Developed countries have been benefiting a lot through plundering the wealth of developing nations using globalization as a pretext . In contrast, least developed countries have been suffering from absolute poverty for age mainly for lack of skilled manpower and poor infrastructure.
It is obvious that developed nations ‘ systematic market obstruction, particularly the West ,have made undeveloped countries cripple in terms of making use the available opportunities of globalization. Besides, the West has been taking advantages over the poor economic performance of undeveloped countries to impose western political ideology.
In fact, some least developed countries have utilized globalization for their own advantages . However, there is still a wide gap in trade balance between developed nations and least developed ones.
Thanks to the new initiative of China- One Belt and One Road ( OBOR), it seems to have shifted such trend. The new initiative of China will enable most least developed countries to benefit from the global market. This is also a great news to African countries.
As one of the African countries , Ethiopia is looking forward to utilizing the Initiative. Using their age -old relations, Ethiopia and China has already developed a strong win- win situations. The OBOR will also have a key role to play in this regard.
This great initiative of China has been crafted based on the Sustainable Development Goals – Agenda 2030. What is more, this initiative has also given top priorities to African Union Agenda 2063.
Indeed ,the One Belt and One Road initiative has various impacts on the economy of Africa. The first and the most important thing, Africa will benefit from Silk road via acquiring Silk Road Fund to its infrastructure development . Technological transformation from China to Africa and job creation are other advantages to least developed countries like Ethiopia.
Moreover, the initiative has industrial parks development activities and African students’ scholarship awards in great numbers.
Furthermore, regional integration is the other important aspect of the Initiative. Looking at the existing poor transport infrastructure impediments in East Africa ,the initiative will for sure bring about a radical shift for African Economy as a whole. This regional integration will be materialized putting in place high speed railway , highway , regional aviation, telecommunication and maritime networks.
Unlike the West economic policy ,the Chinese economic cooperation is free from imposing one’s economic and political ideology. This has already been witnessed in Ethiopia over the past two decades. Despite ideological difference, Ethiopia and China have a strong economic ties that can be taken as best example to other parts of the world.
The initiative will have mutual gains for China and Africa,as Chinese soft power will be increased through the high economic return from its big projects in Africa. Plus, it will create ample jobs for trained professionals of Chinese in Africa.
Fore instance, Following Ethiopia’s rapid economic growth for over one decade, thousands of Chinese have been actively engaged in several infrastructure development projects.
China will have many trading partners in Africa vie the initiative . BY 2020, the total Africa-China trade volume will be 400 billion USD.
In 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping set out the strategy of building the Silk Road Economic Belt and a 21st Century Maritime Silk Road known shortly as the One Belt, One Road initiatives. The proposal caught the interest of the global community, and quickly gained the support of nations on the route.
Over the past year, China and partner countries, together with regional organizations, have begun to build the One Belt and One Road. Innovative methods have strengthened bilateral ties and enhanced regional cooperation, making impressive progress.
The development of the initiative also promotes peace, cooperation and offers a win-win strategy for all. The concept links the Chinese dream to the global dream and has far-reaching strategic significance.
Once the One Belt, One Road vision is realized, it will create the most promising economic corridor, directly benefiting a population of 4.4 billion people: 63 percent of the global population. Between them they have a collective GDP of 2.1 trillion USD, which accounts for 29 percent of the world’s wealth.
The region One Belt, One Road encompasses the most dynamic and vibrant economically, with many developing countries and emerging market economies offering huge growth potential. China already has close economic and trade cooperation with many nations along the proposed route, accounting for quarter of its total foreign trade. The annual trade between China and these countries have grown by 19 percent, on average, in the past decade alone.
Silk Road Vs Ethiopia: During the Aksumite period Ethiopia was part and parcel of the Silk road. There is historical justification that Ethiopia was part of the Silk Road.
The relations between Ethiopia and China have reached to the optimum level and this has a special place in the history of Ethiopian diplomacy.
China has been working to enhance its bilateral ties with Ethiopia for many years. Ethiopia, located in the Horn of Africa, is its gateway to Africa. This has qualified Ethiopia to be a pilot country for Chinese projects in Africa, including the Belt and Road Initiative.
The Belt and Road Forum held in Beijing from May14-15,2017 aimed at discussing the initiative which envisions creating connectivity in infrastructure, economy and people-to-people exchanges as well as policy cooperation.
As it was mentioned by Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn, the consensus reached at the forum will further enhance the Sino-African relations and the development of countries along the Silk and Belt Road.
The West previous cooperation frameworks forced least developed countries to open doors for rent seekers in a bid to get assistance and loan. In the case of China, however, a fundamental agreement has been reached in terms of respecting any countries’ economic and political policy .
As this initiative encourages the relocation of Chinese manufacturing industries to the Belt and Road countries, the Ethiopian delegation has seized the opportunity to promote Ethiopia’s potentials so as to lure anchor Chinese companies.