U.N. chief Antonio Guterres praises Belt and Road Initiative

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Guterres

The United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres on Sunday called on the international community to seize the opportunities presented by the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, to strive for common global development.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Guterres praised the initiative, saying it had massive potential.

“The Belt and Road Initiative has immense potential. Running through Asia, Europe and Africa, and extending to the whole world, it is far reaching in geography and in ambition,” the U.N. chief said in his address.

He also praised the Initiative as an effective way of integrating and providing access to global markets.

“For countries yearning to become more integrated to the global economy, it can promote effective access to markets and new opportunities,” he added.

Guterres also highlighted China’s growing role in promoting global initiatives such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, and in increasing support for UN peacekeeping and new funds designed to foster growth, stability and prosperity.

The UN chief called China a “central pillar of multilateralism,” and said he believes that with the UN and the world’s support for the Belt and Road Initiative, developing countries will achieve faster growth and better meet the UN 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.

About 29 heads of state are gathered in Beijing for the Forum that was opened on Sunday morning by Chinese President Xi Jinping.