For China, All Roads (and Belts) Lead to Europe

MIN READMay 17, 2017 | 09:00 GMT

The Eurasia Tunnel, also known as the Istanbul Bosphorus Highway Tube Transition Project, is a tunnel that links Asia to Europe.

(SAMET GULER/Shutterstock)

China's Belt and Road Initiative encompasses six economic corridors. But in geographic and ideological terms, Europe represents the end of the new Silk Road. Increased connectivity with Europe could offer China a chance to expand market and its access to high-tech and strategic assets, thereby facilitating domestic industrial reform. Despite Beijing's stated goal to foster greater integration throughout Eurasia with its Belt and Road scheme, however, its approach on the Continent has so far emphasized bilateral or subregional agreements with states in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as the Mediterranean. The strategy has raised concerns among the European Union's central powers that Beijing's influence in the countries could threaten their own, particularly as the bloc's political and economic rifts widen....

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