Chairman Lu's Speech at 2017 Tbilisi Belt and Road Forum
29 Nov 2017


Speech at 2017 Tbilisi Belt and Road Forum


Lu Jianzhong

SRCIC Chairman


29 November 2017



Your Excellency Giorgi Kvirikashvili,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear friends,


First, as a partner of this Forum, Silk Road Chamber of International Commerce, or SRCIC, wishes to welcome all of you to this Forum.


Georgia is a beautiful country full of vitality and vigor, and it has great advantages in the construction of the Belt and Road.


From the view of historical dimension, Georgia is a great country with splendid culture and a rich history of more than 3000 years. Be it the ancient Silk Road or today’s Silk Road Economic Belt, Georgia takes the inheritance of the Silk Road trade and culture.


From the view of geographic dimension, Georgia is located at the intersection of Europe and Asia, and has long been referred to as the Crossroad of Europe and Asia. It is also one of the shortest transit routes between the two continents.


From the view of social dimension, Georgia has a stable society, efficient government, favorable tax policies, and good investment environment. It is a preferable place for investment and business.


From the view of development dimension, the Georgian 2020 Economic and Social Development Plan proposed by Georgian government aims to construct the transit hub for logistics and transportation, connecting Europe and Asia. This strategy of Georgia shares much of the wisdom of China’s Belt and Road Initiative. With the joint efforts of both countries, achievements in the construction of the Belt and Road have been achieved.


Georgia is the first Eurasian country to sign the free trade agreement with China. It has set a good example of international economic and trade exchange and cooperation in the Belt and Road framework.


China and Georgia are jointly building the Poti Free Industrial Zone, which will become the center of Eurasian free trade, financial services and logistics.


Besides, the other infrastructure construction programs, such as the Anaklia Deep Sea Port that is under construction, and the Baku- Tbilisi- Kars Railway that has just been launched, will all greatly benefit the Belt and Road connectivity and promote the development of the regional economy.


Practice has proven that Georgia’s development strategy corresponds well with the Belt and Road Initiative, providing the new space and impetus for the common development among regional countries, which not only benefits Georgia but also other Belt and Road countries. This is consistent with the Silk Road spirit, the concept of policy coordination, facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration, and people-to-people bond, the principle of achieving shared growth through consultation and collaboration, and the idea of building a community of shared responsibilities, interests, and a future for mankind. It also proves that pragmatic cooperation within the Belt and Road framework will lead to new actions, new development, new achievements and contribution. Just as Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili put it that Belt and Road Initiative is a wise strategy as to bridge the East and West through rejuvenating the ancient Silk Road.


The 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party was successfully held last month. The congress has formulated the action plan and development blueprint for the socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, focusing on people’s hope for a good life. By 2020, China will build up a moderately prosperous society in all respects. By 2035, China will basically realize the socialist modernization. And by the middle of the century, China will grow into a strong socialism modernized country featured with prosperity, democracy, civilization, harmony and beauty. With faster progress of innovation, better development quality, higher degree of openness and deeper reform, China will play a continuous leading role in the world economic growth, create wider and larger influence effect on increasing cooperation opportunities to enable more countries to get on China’s speed train of development.   


As Belt and Road construction has entered a new era, SRCIC will take active steps to utilize its advantages in resource integration and mechanism innovation. Adhering to the principle of achieving shared growth through consultation and collaboration, SRCIC will work together with its 91 state-level chamber members and millions of enterprise members from 75 countries to boost business cooperation and cultural exchange between different countries, and advance the world economic revival and prosperity with its 8 platforms for pragmatic and win-win cooperation, including, Silk Road International Development Fund, Silk Road Transnational Financial Leasing Alliance, International Artwork Trading Center and more.


Since its establishment in 2015, SRCIC has received strong support from Chairman of JSC Partnership Fund Mr. David Saganelidze, Honorary Chairman of Georgian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Mr. Jemal Inaishvili, and Chairman of GCCI Ms. Nino Chikovani. In particular, Georgian Prime Minister H. E. Giorgi Kvirikashvili sent congratulatory videos to SRCIC Silk Road Business Summit in 2016 and 2017. His support has inspired and invigorated us and has made the summit participants from over 70 countries better understand the good investment environment and promising future in Georgia. Now, please allow me to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks for His Excellency.


Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear friends,


This Forum is an unprecedented international event held in a critical time that displays what Georgia has achieved and yet to achieve in promoting cooperation and development. In yesterday’s sessions, delegates shared their views and wisdom for further information exchange, policy connectivity, economic and trade cooperation between Georgia and other countries. SRCIC will also spare no efforts to promote the implementation of a series of cooperation projects. I’d like to share a few thoughts in this regards:


First, we should build platforms for industry collaboration and the combination between industry and financing. SRCIC is committed to the rational movement of economic factors, efficient allocation of resources, and deep integration of markets. To achieve this, SRCIC has established the Silk Road International Development Fund with a target size of 10 billion US dollars. At present, five sovereignty funds including the Georgian Partnership Fund has joined us for future investment in key construction projects under the Belt and Road Initiative. At the same time, we provide our members with efficient and easier access to financing through the Silk Road Transnational Financial Leasing Alliance.


Second, we should contribute to a sound international economic governing system by coordinating our standards and rules. Unified market standards eliminate trade barriers and ensure fair competition, which forms the premise for global economic and trade cooperation. SRCIC is willing to work closely with government bodies, international organizations, and enterprises in coordinating trade policies, rules and standards among different countries and regions. With these efforts, we hope to contribute to an open, non-discriminative, and fair international trade and investment system.


Third, we should deepen tourism cooperation and cultural exchange, and promote people-to-people bond. It is the connectivity between peoples that lays a solid foundation for the sound relationship between countries. Development in tourism is a good way to promote people-to-people bond. SRCIC will advocate the tourism resources of Georgia and other member countries, and boost a fast development of middle and high-end business tourism. SRCIC will also hold Silk Road International Culture Week on a regular basis to explore new mechanisms for cultural exchange and trade cooperation. In addition, SRCIC has established the Silk Road Sunshine Fund to provide financial support for 60 international students from Ukraine and Lebanon to study in Xi’an, China, who will be the future envoys for cultural exchange along the Silk Road. The Silk Road Sunshine Fund will continue its scholarship programs for cultural exchange in other countries.


Fourth, we should promote Alliances building-up and enhance integrated development among cities. Cities are important platforms for commercial and cultural exchange. In response to our members’ requests, SRCIC has established the Silk Road Urban Alliance. We welcome Georgian cities and the big cities of different countries to join the Urban Alliance, which will serve its member cities for construction and development.


Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear friends,


Now, we are faced with the profound transformation of development mode for global economy, governance, and globalization process. Under such challenging circumstances, the Belt and Road Initiative has been proposed with Chinese wisdom and recognized by the international communities. It facilitates the emergence of a new world pattern, improvement of the new order, and generation of the new momentum. It builds up a big “friend circle” that connects the whole world, bringing closer interaction, more opportunities and substantial benefits to Silk Road countries and regions.


The Belt and Road construction is a great undertaking that calls for contemporary efforts and will benefit future generations. Let us join hands in synergy to establish a global community of a shared future, and to pursue the common dream of ours.


I wish the Forum a great success.


Thank you.