Image by : WU HONG/ Reuters
But President Xi’s vision isn't only about putting a physical infrastructure in place. Beneath the blueprint to create a contiguous land and maritime zone is China’s response to the more exclusive mega-economic blocks such as the ones led by US, in the current climate of protectionist backlash. It is a long-term project to secure China’s geo-strategic realm with obvious political and security implications. In his speech to the BRI forum in Beijing on 15 May, President Xi linked the initiative to China’s foreign policy goals of win–win and common development, believing that it would ‘generate strong momentum for building a human community of shared future’.