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Europe

Bulgarian President: Japan, South Korea, Qatar Will Join Three Seas Initiative | SOURCE: NOVINITE

Japan, South Korea and Qatar will join the Three Seas initiative, the european big project that contemplate energy infrastructure and digital connectivity along the north-south axis in Central and Eastern Europe.

SOURCE: NOVINITE


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Europe

Georgia and EU jointly celebrate political agreement | SOURCE: EURO NEWS

European Council President Charles Michel, left, speaks with Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili, on screen, during a video conference at the European Council on April 19

Georgia and the EU celebrate a political agreement putting an end to a crisis that could have disrupted the democratic advancement achieved over the past decades and weakened Georgia’s progress along its European path. “The EU can count now on a stable, fiercely pro-European partner in a region essential to Europe’s values, security and connectivity “

SOURCE: EURO NEWS


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connectivity

China’s Belt and Road projects at risk | SOURCE: NIKKEI ASIA

Prime Minister Imran Khan, left, and Afghan Taliban fighters, shown celebrating the peace deal between the U.S. and Taliban in March 2020. (Source photos by Getty Images)

Pakistan fears that the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan — in line with the American-Taliban peace deal signed last year — will cause more security threats putting China’s Belt and Road projects at risk.

Analysts feel the uncertainty in Afghanistan has provided Tehreek e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) with a window to attack interests in Pakistan, including the projects of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, or CPEC — the $50 billion Pakistan component of the Belt and Road initiative.

CPEC has not traditionally been a top target of TTP in Pakistan. But in recent months, anti-China rhetoric has [surfaced] in TTP propaganda, especially because of China’s oppression of Uyghur Muslims.

Pakistan already joined the U.S., Russia and China to call on the Afghan government and Taliban to ensure that Afghan soil is not used for cross-border attacks.

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China´s interest in Sri Lanka | SOURCE: JAMESTOWN ORG

Image: An aerial photo taken on September 23, 2020 shows the construction of a park in Colombo Port City by China Harbor. (Source: CHEC via Xinhua)

Located at the crossroads of global shipping lanes, Sri Lanka has become a significant recipient of Chinese economic and military influence in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).

Chinese investments in port capacity have enabled Sri Lanka to enhance its strategic position in the Indian Ocean and become a regional trading hub, with future plans to develop its ability to become a financial center as well.

Access to the Indian Ocean’s sea routes is critical to Beijing, as today China is the world’s top oil importer, principally coming from the Middle East, passing through the Indian Ocean on its way to China.

Sri Lanka has been a critical partner in China’s expansive foreign policy and infrastructure-focused Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The situation further highlights Sri Lanka’s delicate balancing act between China and India. Colombo Port in Sri Lanka is particularly significant for India, as it handles roughly 40 percent  of transshipped container cargo bound for the Indian market.

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India, EU announce Connectivity Partnership to checkmate China | SOURCE: THE ECONOMIC TIMES

India-EU summit: FTA negotiations to resume after 8 yrs; European leaders extend solidarity on COVID-19

India and EU announced a comprehensive Connectivity Partnership on supporting resilient and sustainable connectivity both in India and in third countries and regions, including Africa, Central Asia and the Indo-Pacific that will provide an alternative to China’s mega Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The EU-India Connectivity Partnership covers cooperation in the digital, energy, transport, and people-to-people sector. Is the second such partnership for Europe, after the one between EU and Japan in September 2019.

The India-EU initiative is comprehensive compared to the Blue Dot network formed by USA-Japan-Australia to provide assessment and certification of infrastructure development projects worldwide.

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Geoeconomics

SOUTH ASIA:

PAKISTAN:

  • Pakistan is exploring the possibility of increasing Sri Lanka’s trade connectivity to the Central Asian region through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CEPC), called as a flagship project of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

SOURCE: DAILY MIRROR


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Geoeconomics

WHAT IS HAPPENING IN GEOECONOMICS? SOUTH ASIA:

PAKISTAN:

  • Pakistan is looking for connectivity with Afghanistan, Central Asia and ultimately to Russia, with Balochistan playing a pivotal role through its geographical location and abundance of natural resources. Balochistan is a geo-strategic location as well as a hub of natural resources which if fully utilised could be a catalyst for the entire region. Since Pakistan’s inception, Balochistan had been made a target for the country’s adversaries due to its attributes, and consequently had been destabilized by internal and external elements.

SOURCE: DAILY TIMES


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WHAT IS HAPPENING IN GEOECONOMICS? EURASIA:

CHINA´S CONNECTIVITY PLAN:

  • China’s plan to build a global rapid logistics circle for goods by 2035, which would allow goods to be delivered to neighboring countries and major international cities within two- three days, will likely boost China’s trade with major economies in the EU and Asia, observers said. Analysts said the broad plan is also significant in terms of coordinating a global industry chain where China plays a centralized and pivotal role. Riding on such momentum, the world’s economic center of gravity could gradually shift to China, they predicted.

SOURCE: GLOBAL TIMES


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Geopolitics

EURASIA:

TURKEY-IRAN-PAKISTAN:

  • Istanbul, Tehran and Islamabad in 2021. The ITI transnational railroad is expected to enhance connectivity with China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) by providing a rail connection between China and Turkey. The ITI railroad will connect to China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region through Pakistan’s ML-1 railway line.

SOURCE: NIKKEI


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Geopolitics

EURASIA

INDIA-IRAN- UZBEKISTAN:

  • India, Iran, and Uzbekistan have held their first trilateral meeting for possible joint use of Chabahar port, for transit purposes as well as strengthened regional connectivity into Eurasia. The region is witnessing a fair share of great power competition, including Russia and China.  For India, the use of Chabahar port is a geopolitical move aimed at countering growing Chinese influence in the region. India is planning on cashing in on existing projects to expand its reach and linkages so that the Central Asian republics have an alternative to China’s BRI. 

SOURCE: THE DIPLOMAT


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