Tunisia signs agreement with China for new 'silk road'

Foreign ministry says it will boost 'positive relations'

12 July, 13:20

    (ANSAmed) - TUNIS, JULY 12 - Tunisia and China have become closer. The two countries' foreign ministers have signed in Beijing a memorandum of agreement for Tunisia's adhesion to the ''Belt and Road'' whose objective is to connect China to the Middle East, Africa and Europe by land, air and sea. The project vies to promote the circulation of products made in the Asian country and stimulate China's investments abroad, said the Tunisian foreign ministry in a statement. It added that the two ministers, Tunisia's Khemaies Jhinaoui and his Chinese counterpart Yang Yi praised ''a new conquest in Chinese-Tunisian relations, which aims to open wide perspectives of economic cooperation in trade, tourism and investments between the two countries and boost the positive dynamic in bilateral relations''.

    Tunisia's adhesion to the project will increase China's role in the realization of development projects in Tunisia, in particular in major infrastructural projects of the 2016-2020 development plan and will contribute to the creation of a regional balance and the inclusion of central areas in development dynamics, said the Tunisian diplomacy chief.

    For his part, Yang Yi said China is determined to continue to boost cooperation and partnership with Tunisia in investments, technical cooperation, the development of infrastructures, tourism and technology.

    The new 'silk road' is an ambitious project through which Beijing vies to create solid industrial relations with the various countries involved.

    Launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013, the Belt and Road (Obor), then renamed Belt and road Initiative, aims to create a transport, communication and exchange infrastructure network involving 64 countries and China (some 4.5 billion people) over an area embracing Asia, Europe and Africa.

    Beijing's objective is to complete the main trajectory by 2049.

    Three financial institutions are supporting the initiative, coordinated by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (Aiib), a multilateral bank with the participation of 100 countries. The projects to be granted funding will open major opportunities to businesses in transport, telecommunications, energy and connected sectors. (ANSAmed)
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