An Iraqi geopolitics analyst called on the Iraqi government to actively participate in the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which Iraq will reap from its strategic importance and the significant benefits.
"The Iraqi government must seek to build solid relations with China and to actively participate in the BRI," Muthana Mishaan al-Mazrouei, professor of geopolitics in Baghdad's Mustansiriyah University, told Xinhua in an exclusive interview.
Mazrouei asserted that participating in the BRI is important for reviving Iraq's pivotal role in trade and economic exchanges, just like the days of the old Silk Road.
"The initiative presents an opportunity for Iraq to achieve its economic interests, and enhance economic cooperation and relations with countries across the route," Mazrouei said.
Many countries of the Arab world, such as Kuwait and Syria, can also benefit from the initiative, according to Mazrouei.
Mazrouei said that the new Silk Road plays a major role in the development of both China's and the world's economy. The BRI is the core of China's internal and external policies, as it aims to connect the world to China through routes for trade and political exchange.
Mazrouei said that this initiative is "based on consultation, sharing, cooperation and win-win establishment of partnership of all countries. China expects the benefits to be shared so as to bring prosperity to all states participating in the project."
Proposed by China in 2013, the BRI refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, which aim at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe, Africa and beyond through the revival of ancient trade routes.
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