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Building an International Think Tank Network in Line with “One Belt and One Road” Initiative


By Cheng Guoqiang, Research fellow, Director-General of the International Cooperation Department, Secretary-General of the Academic Committee, DRC

The initiative of jointly building the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road ( “One Belt and One Road”) is not only China’s Initiative, but also the common aspirations of China and all the countries along the routes. Countries should work in concert and move toward the objectives of mutual benefit and common security. By now, the “One Belt and One Road” Initiative has entered a critical period of overall implementation and in-depth advancement, which requires that countries along the Belt and Road routes should continuously expand and enhance their acknowledgment of and participation in jointly building “One Belt and One Road” in terms of the connotations, targets and tasks of the Initiative.

Enhancing policy coordination is an important guarantee for implementing the Initiative. The unique functions of think tanks should be given full play when enhancing policy coordination. Think tanks not only boast professional study capacity and good social influence, but also serve as an important bridge between the government and the public, and between policy coordination and academic research. Thus, during the joint building of “One Belt and One Road” project, cooperation among think tanks should be improved, and a network linking think tanks of countries along the Belt and Road routes should be established to jointly provide policy advice to practical cooperation and large-scale projects. The functions of think tanks of countries along the Belt and Road routes should be specially given full play in terms of enhancing mutual understanding, building consensus and deepening cooperation. Based on the platforms of think tanks along the routes and focusing on targets coordination and policy communication, efforts should be made to promote extensive cultural and academic exchanges, personnel exchanges and cooperation, media cooperation, youth and women exchanges and volunteer services, so as to win public support for deepening bilateral and multilateral cooperation.

The think tank network for countries along the “One Belt and One Road” routes should be jointly built through consultation and mutual benefit, and be steadily pushed forward with highlighted priorities. And this can be achieved by formulating an open think tank network, integrating and utilizing think tank resources both at home and abroad, transforming and innovating ways of international cooperation and exchanges for think tanks, and establishing a normalized mechanism for communications, personnel exchanges and cooperation, and holding international development forums relating to “One Belt and One Road” Initiative.


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