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China holds special session to promote Belt and Road initiative at IRF

Any representation of this initiative (BRI) does not change or alter the position of India: China

Press Trust of India  |  Greater Noida 

China, flag,
Photo: Shutterstock

today held a special session to promote its ambitious 'Belt and Road Initiative', which India is strongly opposing, at the World Road Meeting (WRM) organised by an body and supported by and the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, among

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, however, sought to disassociate itself from the session with an official later saying that "neither the ministry approved any such session nor the organisers apprised it about any such matter".

The Road Federation (IRF), a Geneva-based body which is organising the four-day event from November 14 on the outskirts of the national capital, said in a statement that the Highway and Transportation Society (CHTS) held a special session at WRM to promote its as well as introduce China's development of transport and newer technologies.

This comes against the backdrop of India consistently objecting to the controversial (CPEC), which is part of and passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. India has boycotted China's Belt and Road forum on sovereignty concerns and has been mounting diplomatic pressure in this regard.

"Any representation of this initiative (BRI) does not change or alter the position of India," official sources said when asked about today's session at WRM.

The statement quoted, President CHTS Mengyong Weng as saying, "To promote and implement the 'Belt and Road Initiative' worldwide the CHTS has proposed to establish the Belt and Road Transport Alliance'(BRITA) to promote the idea and achievements among the member countries and regions of the initiative."

The will not only focus on Asian, European and African countries but will also be open to all other countries, Weng was quoted as saying in the statement.

"will contribute 14.5 billion US dollars to the silk road fund and two Chinese banks will be lending 55 billion US dollars to member countries," he said.

The statement also quoted Weng as saying that the proposed initiative will help bring peace and cooperation apart from economic prosperity in various regions.

To bring in more openness among countries and regions the CHTS has proposed to set up a Non-political and a non-government body named Belt and Road Transport Alliance (BRITA) ,this will help ward off the fears of as detrimental to stability and create a big one family of countries en route the silk road, Weng said.

A Road Transport and Highways Ministry official said they "completely disassociate with any such special session. Neither the organisers reported about any such session nor we approved it."

On being asked about the Ministry supporting the event, the official said the Ministry supported the Global Road Meet like it does to other such events.

Besides, the Road Ministry and NITI Aayog, listed as 'supporting organisations' include NHAI, EXIM Bank, CII, Assocham and World Bank.

First Published: Thu, November 16 2017. 21:23 IST