EU alternative to Belt and Road Initiative gains momentum

The EU has lined up 70 projects in its first concrete steps to counter Chinese projects through the Global Gateway initiative, Politico’s Barbara Moens reports. The initiative aims to offer developing countries an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which seeks to project the country’s power along strategic trade routes through various infrastructure projects. 

The first projects of EU’s Global Gateway include a cable under the Black Sea, an optical fiber cable to connect Mediterranean and Northern African countries, and a hydroelectric project in Cameroon.

The Global Gateway aims to mobilize up to €300 billion ($326 billion) in public and private funds by 2027 to finance infrastructure projects abroad—still far short of the nearly $2.3 trillion China has invested in nearly 4,000 overseas projects since 2005. The EU initiative’s list includes several projects in China’s and Russia’s backyards, such as an energy transition partnership with Indonesia, a digital connectivity project in the Philippines, a hydrogen project in Kazakhstan, a transport link in Central Asiaand a hydro-power plant in Tajikistan.

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