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Xi reviewed 18 vessels from 13 countries invited to participate in a naval parade on Tuesday afternoon.
The foreign vessels in the waters off eastern China’s coastal city of Qingdao saluted
Xi, who was on board the destroyer Xining, in their traditional manners as they passed by.
The vessels whistled and officers and soldiers stood in a ceremonial formation, saluting Xi as they passed by.
“Salute to you, comrades,” Xi called out to the officers and soldiers.
“Hail to you, chairman,” they replied.
Xi alternated the greeting with “Comrades, thanks f
or your hard work,” to which the officers and soldiers replied “Serve the peop
urn the salute, and Xi waved to the naval officers and soldiers aboard the vessels
i?onboard the destroyer Xining gave an order to commence the naval parade on the sea off Qingdao at about 2:30 pm Tuesday.
A total of 32 vessels of the People’s Liberation Army Navy sailed in six groups, and 39 warplanes of the navy flew in ten echelons.
tween China and economies related to the Belt and Road Initiative ex
ceeded $130 billion between 2013 and 2018, injecting new growth momentum into BRI-rela
ted countries and contributing to recovery of the global economy, senior Chinese officials said on Monday.
China’s direct investment in BRI-related countries grew by 5.2 percent a
nnually on average to surpass $90 billion between 2013 and 2018, Song Lihong, an officia
l in the Ministry of Commerce’s Comprehensive Department, said at a news conference.
Song said that in the same period, China had received a total of
$40 billion in inbound investment from BRI countries as two-way investment deepened.
Within the five years, the value of the projects completed
by Chinese companies in BRI economies amounted to $400 billion, Song said.
The value of trade in goods between China and BRI-related economies exceeded $6 trillion in the same period, an av
rage annual growth of 4 percent, higher than the overall growth of China’s foreign trade, he added.
ational Cooperation, to be held in Beijing on Thursday through Saturday, S
ong said the ministry will help deepen economic and trade cooperation with other coun
tries. “China will build more free trade zones with countries that are willing to do so,” Song added.
“As for the existing free trade zones, we will reduce administrative barriers in trade
and investment and push the formation of a big Belt and Road marketplace.”
While some critics have argued that the initiative will lead countries i
nto debt traps, Song said debt can be solved through joint efforts to promote the devel
opment of BRI economies. “Even though some countries may have high debt levels, as their pace of indus
trialization, urbanization and modernization accelerates, their debts will gradually decrease.”
Joe Kaeser, president and CEO of Siemens AG, said, “If an initiative like the BRI unifies more than two-thirds of the global
population, it will create massive infrastructure and economic movement that will build its own rules.”