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Sweden’s approach to China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Still a glass half-empty
Swedish Defence University, Department of Military Studies, Tactical Warfare Division, Land Operations Section. The Swedish Institute of International Affairs.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5426-8238
The Swedish Institute of International Affairs.
2017 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In 2013 China’s President Xi Jinping launched the “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) initiative, later renamed the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which involves China undertaking to make infrastructure investments worth billions of US dollars in the countries along the old Silk Road connecting China with Europe. While commonly seen as an infrastructure initiative aimed at strengthening the Chinese economy, it is also a political project with far-reaching strategic aims.

This UI Brief outlines how China has approached the BRI with Sweden, how Sweden has responded and the perceptions of major Swedish stakeholders. It finds that Swedish officials are often highly cautious, maintaining a wait-and see policy. While also cautious, members of the business community are cautiously optimistic and have been more actively following BRI-related developments, seeking out avenues for potential business. The actual impact of BRI in Sweden, however, is so far very limited.

The Brief concludes that Sweden’s approach to BRI has been too reactive and too passive. It argues that both the government and the business community need to engage more actively with the BRI in order to maximize its possible benefits. To this end, a national strategy is needed that includes the government and the business sector. Better coordination is also needed between government agencies and to link existing intra-governmental cooperation with the business community. Their importance cannot be overemphasized as the BRI is a political project, not an idealistic free-market endeavour.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm, 2017. , 13 p.
Series
UI paper, 1/2017
Keyword [en]
Belt and Road, One Belt One Road, OBOR, AIIB, BRI, Silk Road Economic Belt, New Silk Road, China, Sweden
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies) Globalization Studies Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Krigsvetenskap
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-7051OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-7051DiVA: diva2:1144485
Projects
Power Shift in East Asia
Funder
Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation, 203.0162
Available from: 2017-09-26 Created: 2017-09-26 Last updated: 2017-09-27

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf