“Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) can be an important part of global efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” Antonio Guterres, Secretary General, United Nations.
China’s Belt & Road Initiative (BRI)
First announced in 2013 by President Xi Jinping, Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a 21st century revival of the ancient Silk Road built during China’s Han Dynasty over 2,000 years ago to promote International trade between China and rest of the ancient world. The super ambitious BRI undertaking targets integration of the economies of Asia, Europe and parts of Africa in a colossal market consisting of 65+ countries and an estimated 30 percent of the world’s economic output.
“The funding requirement for the BRI is unprecedented,” says Natalie Blythe of HSBC, which is estimated at $26 trillion by 2030.
UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
In 2015 United Nation’s 193 signatory countries committed to achieving 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. Estimated to cost $5 trillion — $7 trillion annually totaling up to $75 trillion — $105 trillion by 2030, three years into its journey, SDGs are still facing an annual funding gap of $2.5 trillion. No relief in sight, the cumulative SDG funding gap is now $7.5 trillion.
The Common Ground
During his address to the Belt And Road Forum’s Leaders Roundtable in China, United Nation’s Secretary General Antonio Guterres remarked:
As part of his consistent commitment to sustainability and globalization President Xi declared during the same summit:
“The Chinese government  would like to see all these infrastructure developments built upon a sustainable methodology,” says Eddie Ching of HSBC one of the major BRI stakeholders.
There seems to be a growing consensus that SDGs and BRI “can and should be integrated.”
At a time when both SDG and BRI are facing urgent funding needs for achieving their common goals, there’s an immediate need that both initiatives found a common ground for consolidating their efforts. Influence 2030 provides such an opportunity for exploring and sociopolitically exploiting state-of-the-art blockchain and AI technologies for new innovative financing approaches to fund sustainability. And, it all happens in the historical city of Xi’an.
Xi’an was the starting point for the ancient Silk Road, and now Xi’an hosts its 21st century version — BRI. To achieve sustainability of our planet monetizing Collective Influence is all that we need. So let’s build up the momentum.
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