Friday, January 15, 2021

Will Georgia Be Part Of China’s Belt and Road Initiative?

China’s Belt and Road Initiative has attracted many and Georgia could be one of them. Georgia has the ability to develop its Black Sea ports, internal railway, and highway networks that can actively engage China in the South Caucasian route for commercial purposes.

The ancient Silk Road served as an ancient trade route from eastern China to various major markets like the Roman empire, Byzantine empire, Sasanian Iran, etc. The most crucial aspect of all these trade routes was their adaptability to absorb changes taking place in ancient to modern era.

Georgia appears on those ancient trade routes only as a result of political disturbances like an invasion, economic problems, etc in the region. The Silk road passes through Georgia, Armenia, and Iran. In the 19th century, Russians gave access to European products to reach Iran through Georgian transit route. It is well known that in the Soviet era, there were no trade routes that ran through Georgia as the place did not have borders.

After a long time, Georgia has got the chance to become a transit corridor for trade and energy from the Caspian area in Central Asia and also in Western China. The renewal of Georgian trade routes is linked to China’s economic and military rise. Similar to other rising powers, China has strategic goals that clash with those of the U.S. China want to preserve its oil and gas resources, mostly concentrated around the Malacca Strait.

The trillion dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is directed towards reconnecting the Asia-Pacific with Europe through Russia, the Middle East, and Central Asia. There are some major corridors proposed by China. These are China to Europe through the New Eurasian Land Bridge; China-Mongolia-Russian Corridor; Central and West Asian countries;  China-Indochina Peninsula Corridor linking China with the South Pacific Ocean through the South China Sea; China-Pakistan trade corridor and Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar trade route. The listed routes, do not mention Georgia and the South Caucasus but the BRI project is not static, it has undergone several changes. Beijing will always keep adding new routes to face new opportunities and adjust through difficult geographical terrain.

Thus, Chinese BRI approach is inclined towards transcontinental trade routes that were present in ancient and medieval periods. Georgia has all those capabilities that can help Chinese expansionist policy. Georgia has the ability to develop its Black Sea ports, internal railway, and highway networks that can actively engage China in the South Caucasian route for commercial purposes. For sure, China will also keep track of Russia before making any move in the region. The opening up of the Georgian market to Eurasia can help in promoting development activities in the region.

More News at EurAsian Times

Featured

Why Should Pakistan Be ‘Very Worried’ By India’s New Role At The UN Security Council?

India, which has begun its stint as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2021-22, will be chairing three key UN sanctions...

Indian Air Force Chief Compares LCA Tejas With Pakistani / Chinese JF-17 Thunder

Drawing a comparison between India's LCA Mk1A ‘Tejas’ and Pakistan's JF-17 fighters, Indian Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria said that the Indian jets are...

After Russian S-400, India Inks Pact With The UK To Acquire STARStreak Air Defense System

The Indian Army has moved a step closer to acquiring the STARStreak air defense system as the British company Thales and India's Bharat Dynamics...

Turkey Inaugurates New Consulate Building In Pakistan’s Karachi

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Thursday inaugurated the country’s new consulate building in Pakistan's commercial capital Karachi. Addressing the inauguration ceremony, Cavusoglu said the...

Vietnam Beats China, India to Become Next Manufacturing Hub: Reports

Vietnam has emerged as an attractive foreign direct investment (FDI) destination in Asia by beating China and India, a report by the Economist Intelligence...