Shatha Khalil *
The countries of the world are working to change their development strategy and accelerate economic transformation, at the same time the world is still undergoing a period of profound changes in the economy, while geopolitical elements are more present, local tensions are going on, and non-traditional security challenges and global challenges are increasing on a continuous basis, as the gap between the South and the North remains high in terms of development.
The Arab countries are located in the confluence area of Asia and Africa, and are generally characterized by a prominent pluralistic, religious and civilized character. China and the Arab countries are characterized among the developing countries, and as a group have one- sixth of the land area, about a quarter of the world’s population and the one- eighth of the size of world economy.
Although the “Chinese and Arab” sides vary in terms of resources, capabilities and level of development, both are at an important stage in the development process.
In the midst of complex regional and international circumstances, the eighth session of the ministerial meeting of the Forum on China-Arab Cooperation was held in Beijing to enhance investment trade relations between these countries.
The volume of trade exchange between China and the Arab countries increased when this forum was established in 2004, from about 36 billion dollars to more than 190 billion dollars at the end of last year (2017).
China is the second largest economy in the world and the second most important Arab trading partner because of its position at the heart of the trade route. After the initiative launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping about four years ago, the Silk Road includes the financing of harbors and railways around the world, which has aroused interest in many countries and concerns of others.
to implement Beijing’s ambitious vision of its Silk Road project , $900 billion has been allocated , which will bring the golden age of globalization , according to Chinese President Xi Jinying, as the Silk Road Project, the largest in the world, aims to connect the world through several land and sea routes and roads. , it is the most ambitious development project ever, introducing China as a peace-loving country, aiming to turn the world into boats loaded with treasures, not warships or weapons.
The president Xi Jinuing added “The belt and road initiative is rooted in the ancient Silk Road, but it is also open to all other countries,” promising to inject $ 125 billion into the Silk Road Plan.
The project, which extends to include more than 65 countries and runs across four continents, aims to raise the living standards of 70 percent of the world’s population.
But there are concerns in some countries of this project (India), which rejects the idea of the project, and sharply criticized it, and reached the status of the announcement that it will boycott its own actions, justifying its position rejecting this project, which sees “just a colonial institution will leave debts, and break local communities later on “.
As for America, it also questions the goodwill of Beijing, which it believes it is seeking to use its “win-win” project as a ploy to tempt less powerful countries to orbit in its economic space and strengthen its own capabilities.
Western diplomats express concerns about China’s real intentions and willingness to allow non-Chinese companies to participate in the belt and road projects.
“China welcomes the opportunity to participate in the development of ports and the construction of rail networks in Arab countries,” Ping said, as part of a “logistics network linking Central Asia, East Africa and the Indian Ocean to the Mediterranean.”
, According to “Ping” that the participation in the projects will ensure the balance of trade between China and the Arab countries, which confirmed by (Beijing), noting that China will import goods worth more than (8) trillion dollars, and invest more than (750) billion dollars abroad within the next five years.
The foundation of the projects is to support investments of mutual benefit , as China has cooperated with Sudan and Djibouti, which supervises the southern entrance of the Red Sea.
Some Arab countries believe that they need an important partner and ally such as China, a partner with real advantages, economic weight and a promising future in strategic investment.
China is considered :
• Second largest economy in the world.
• Largest importer of oil and energy in the world.
• Largest source in the world.
• Has veto power.
• Has enormous economic and investment potential, and is likely in the next four years to become the world’s first economy.
• Has the status of permanent member of the Security Council.
• It has a clean record with the Arab countries, proved free from any control ambitions, or influence, or hatred.
• Because it does not want the military dimension to extend its influence, such as the United States. It is different because it does not have a military fleet. It has only one used aircraft carrier purchased from Ukraine. It is a one-party state.
• As an emerging economic power, the economic model ” the belt and road” of global interest, and the Chinese economy grows about 7% annually.
in addition China is well known for its remarkable economic career, which began in the 1970s, as it has managed to grow and turn from a poor developing country to the world’s second-largest economy with growth that exceeds the rates of the most successful economic systems of capitalist countries and to contribute effectively , to help dozens of African, Asian and Latin African countries to get out of poverty, without resorting to pressure or domination of political space, or the attempt to blackmail and influence, as do other major economic powers.
Details of the agreement between China and Kuwait:
On July 10, 2018, Kuwait and China signed landmark agreements in various trade and strategic fields as the United States launched a trade war against China. In this regard, economic analysts believe that China will get consumer markets and new energy sources , and the most important of all, China’s strategic view over the corridors and straits stretching from the Mediterranean to Europe.
And China will also play a bigger role in the global system by expanding its trade to areas that have been monopolized only for Western countries.
China and Kuwait are set to launch a massive strategic partnership with a $ 450 billion investment in the Failaka and Boubyan islands. China will invest the islands for a period of 99 years. Kuwait has stipulated that China to deposit a deposit of $ 50 billion as a renewed value for the Government of Kuwait , , and China will pay $ 40 billion to Kuwait’s Silk City to make it the financial center of the Arab world. Thus, Kuwait has changed the rules of the game in the Arab region by its historic agreement with China, which will constitute an Arab slap to all the hegemonic and extortionist efforts of the US administration Adventure and its partners on Arab land.
The United States is at the forefront of the forces and the main feeder of the fears of the Gulf States of the growing Iranian influence after the occupation of Iraq, the dismantling of its political, economic and security institutions, and to bring chaos and destruction in the most safe and secular countries of the East and in preparation for the advancement.
On the other hand, the Russian and European presence in the Arab world is no less bad than the American counterpart. Everyone uses the Arab space as a field for reviewing force, testing weapons and creating chaos without any consideration for the humanitarian factors, morals and responsibilities that the nations have known and being keen to take care of it in times of war and peace.
Today, with the emergence of adventurous Western political leaders with ambitions which are difficult to understand or predict their behavior in conjunction with the growing talk of new solutions, deals and alliances in unknown environments and contexts, fear and anxiety of the future which has become one of the top priorities of the leaders and peoples of the region which remains a sphere of western influence , and it has been growing with every Iranian step toward acquiring nuclear weapons, or negotiating to subject it to international control, will not remain hostage to real and artificial fears and threats.
On the global map, China has been and remains one of the most important global powers to be trusted. Throughout its modern history, it has been one of the world’s most committed non-aligned countries, despite its socialist character. Since the Bandung Conference in 1955, China remained belonging to a third world, committed to supporting the causes and rights of peoples, far from all colonial ambitions and desires of hegemony that spoiled the trust of poor people in all dominant powers.
What is Silk Road?
It is a title given to the group of interconnected roads used by convoys and ships between China and Europe with a length of ten thousand kilometers, which dates back to the rule of the Han dynasty in China about 200 years BC, which was named in 1877 by geographically German, because Chinese silk represented the largest proportion of trade through it.
The Silk Road has a great influence on the prosperity of many ancient civilizations, such as Chinese, Egyptian, Indian and Romanian. It extends from commercial centers in northern China, divided into two branches; the northern branch passes through Eastern Europe and the Crimea to the Black Sea to reach Venice, while the southern section crosses Iraq and Turkey to the Mediterranean Sea or through Syria to Egypt and North Africa.
The Silk Road was stopped as a navigational silk line with the Ottomans in Constantinople. In the early 1990s, it returned with attempts to establish the new Silk Road. These include the so-called “European-Asian Road Bridge” which connects China, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Russia and reaches Germany by rail.
In September 2013, the Chinese president announced in a visit to Kazakhstan to look for a plan to establish a new Silk Road linking China to Europe, known as “One Belt, One Road “, which will connect among 65 countries with expected investments ranging between $ 4-8 trillion, to promote trade between Asia, Europe and Africa.
Economic Studies Unit
Rawabet Center for Research and Strategic Studies