PHNOM PENH, April 24 (Xinhua) -- China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has become a key contributor to global economic growth and poverty reduction in the post-COVID-19 pandemic era, a Cambodian scholar said.
Neak Chandarith, director of the Cambodia 21st Century Maritime Silk Road Research Center, said the initiative has helped developing countries like Cambodia build connectivity infrastructure.
He said some of the major BRI projects here are roads, bridges and power plants, listing the Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway, the Sihanoukville Special Economic Zone, and the Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport project.
"These projects are essential for the integration of the Cambodian economy with other economies of the region and the world," he said.
There are also a number of livelihood improvement projects in poverty alleviation, clean drinking water, rural roads and health, all of which are vital to a better life for people of all participating countries, he added.
Chandarith said the BRI has provided mutual benefits and win-win results for all.
The scholar added that the BRI has also created jobs, trade and investment cooperation and opportunities for economic development for all participating countries.
"The BRI projects will help Cambodia achieve its ambitious goal of becoming an upper-middle income country by 2030 and a high-income country in 2050," he said.
BRI, a reference to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, was initiated by China in 2013 to build trade and infrastructure networks connecting Asia with Europe and Africa on and beyond the ancient Silk Road trade routes.
Chandarith said the initiative is still a key mechanism to solidify cooperation among countries in the region and the world for the sake of peace, stability, security, sustainable development, and common prosperity.
"Over the past 10 years, the BRI has provided a lot of tangible benefits to the people of all participating countries, and became the world's largest platform for international cooperation," he said.
"BRI is a road towards building a community with a shared future for mankind, and a road towards common prosperity for all," he added. ■