[Beijing Forum 2015] PanelⅠ--International Cooperation:The One Belt One Road Initiative (Session 1)
The session began with the opening speech given by Professor Sun Qixiang, Dean of the School of Economics at Peking University. Then Professor Stefan Dercon of the University of Oxford, Chief Economist at the UK Department for International Development gave a presentation on “Importing China into Africa”. He introduced the Western and Chinese model of engagement for development, and said that, the states we meet in Africa are neither European model nor Chinese model and that those states are neo-patrimonial, predatory and failing states. He argued that whether the direct and the indirect development returns of aid and investment from foreign countries will be conducive to the state largely depends on nature of the state. When talking about of the future of Africa, professor Dercon said that, economic growth,creating jobs and incomes are the key for development, however, it is hard to achieve in states and politics not committed to growth and development, and there are still many challenges to all our models of engagement, including Western and Chinese models.
Professor Dercon giving his speech
Professor Naoyuki Yoshino of Asian Development Bank Institute talked about the Population Aging of Japan and its lessons to China. He said that, Japan has made a lot of efforts to cope with aging population, including building seniority wage system of Japan, postponing retirement age, creating job market for elderly people, inventing robots, increasing female participation and providing sufficient child care system. He then made a case study of how Southern Tagalog Arterial Road (STAR) project in Philippines improved road linkage between Metro Manila and Batangas City and provided easy access to Batangas international airport and thereby accelerated industrial development in Batangas and nearby provinces.
After the coffe break, Professor Adrian Wood of the University of Oxford gave the speech of “Lessons from the Past for Effectiveness in the future”. Professor Wood argued that, some general lessons can be drawn from both eastern and western countries’ experiences of international cooperation that could lead to improvement in the future. These experiences include using the country-led model; doing more than donor projects; spending more multilaterally; making conditions clear; being aware of isomorphism; aiming at policy coherence; and thinking beyond poverty reduction. However, even with the benefit of these lessons, international cooperation for development still remains difficult.
Mr. Wang Xiaolin Gave the presentation on “Contribution Chinese wisdom to international cooperation on poverty alleviation of One Belt One Road .” He introduced China’s achievement and experience in poverty alleviation, stressed that “One Belt Onee Road” would play an important role in international poverty reduction.