Global Gateway Plan

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    • Recently, the European Commission has announced €300 billion for global infrastructure to rival China.

    Global Gateway Plan

    • About:
      • The European Commission has announced the Global Gateway plan to mobilise €300 billion ($340 billion) between 2021 and 2027 in public and private infrastructure investment around the world.
    • Global involvement: 
      • The plan is global in scope, adapting to the needs and strategic interests of different regions and is seen as a European effort to challenge China’s Belt and Road Initiative, launched in 2013, and funds infrastructure projects in the developing world. 
    • Aim: 
      • To strengthen Europe’s supply chains, boost EU trade and help fight climate change, focusing on digitalisation, health, climate and energy and transport sectors, as well as education and research.
    • Target:  
      • To mobilize the fund between 2021 and 2027 by joining the resources of the E.U., member states, European financial institutions and national development finance institutions.
    • International Support: 
      • The G7 commission, earlier this year, acknowledged the trans-Atlantic roots of the plan on its website, noting, “Initiatives such as the Build Back Better World and Global Gateway will mutually reinforce each other”.
    • Quality: 
      • Projects had to be of high quality, with a high level of transparency and good governance and had to deliver tangible results for the countries involved.
    • Funding: 
      • The money to be made available will not come from EU and member state coffers, and the plan will need funding from international institutions and from the private sector if it is to get anywhere near its target.
    • Offshoot: 
      • The EU strategy is an offshoot of a plan by G7 countries (Build Back Better Programme) to offer developing countries an alternative to the Belt and Road Initiative.

    Image Courtesy: Tip 

    Need for the Project

    • Debt burden: China has funded rail, roads and ports but has been accused of leaving some countries saddled with debt.
    • Sustainable growth: Countries need “trusted partners” to design projects that are sustainable.
    • Environment cum development:  A different, democratic approach could deliver on projects that focused on tackling climate change as well as global health security and sustainable development for developing countries.

    Significance

    • Common ground: It’s a good sign that finally Europe is asserting its influence in this area. That’s a common interest India shares with her transatlantic friends in the US and UK.
    • No dependencies: The EU has pointedly emphasised its “values-based” and “transparent” approach, arguing it wants to create links, not dependencies.

    Conclusion

    • The bloc will mobilise financial aid in the public and private infrastructure investment around the world.

    China’s Belt and Road Initiative

    • China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which was launched in 2013 by President Xi Jinping, involves development and investment initiatives stretching worldwide. 
    • More than 100 countries have signed agreements with China to cooperate in BRI projects like railways, ports and highways.
    • It is a transcontinental long-term policy and investment program which aims at infrastructure development and acceleration of the economic integration of countries along the route of the historic Silk Road.
    • BRI aims to “promote the connectivity of Asian, European and African continents and their adjacent seas, establish and strengthen partnerships among the countries along the Belt and Road, set up all-dimensional, multi-tiered and composite connectivity networks, and realize diversified, independent, balanced and sustainable development in these countries.”
    • Belt and Road Initiative combines two initiatives:
      • The (land-based) Silk Road Economic Belt (SREB), comprising six development corridors
      • (Ocean-going ) The 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (MSR)

    (Image Courtesy: Forbes )

    Source: TH