one belt one road

The BRI International Youth Forum (BRIYF) engages youth to bridge the perception gap about the Belt and Road Initiative, writes Seksan Anantasirikiat. 

Luo Shugang, China’s minister of culture has stressed that the key to sound relations between states lies in their respective people’s closeness to each other based on mutual understanding. Minister Shugang was emphasizing the essence of culture as a means of promoting the One Belt One Road Initiative, which holistically underscores “openness, inclusiveness, mutual learning and shared economic prosperity” amongst developing nations.

Both diplomacy and international relations are European constructs, products of the specific contingencies of European history. They dominate global governance not because they are universal concepts, but because of the domination firstly of European powers and then the U.S. As U.S. hegemony declines and a more genuinely multipolar world system emerges, will alternative approaches to diplomacy and global governance also emerge?

Shaun Riordan asks, "As U.S. hegemony declines and a more genuinely multipolar world system emerges, will alternative approaches to diplomacy and global governance also emerge?"

Online clips —both geared for external and domestic consumption — has become a popular means for China to promote its policies and its perspective on issues, as part of its still fledgling, and often ham-fisted, soft power. Previous attempts have included aggressively nationalistic rap and cute, catchy tunes about its five-year plan.

Beijing predicts that the new Silk Road will allow China to extend and showcase its soft power both culturally and economically. We are in a "period of strategic opportunity" up to 2020, according to the Beijing leadership, notwithstanding the remarks from American president-elect Donald Trump or territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

Over the past few decades of China’s rise, Beijing’s soft power pitch to the developing east has been an indictment of Ugly Americanism. China had fallen victim to Western and Japanese imperialism, and as a result pledged to act not as a patron but a partner in decolonialism and development. 

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