What is China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) project?

All you need to know about China's ambitious OBOR project.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: May 14, 2017 6:10 pm
obor, what is obor, one belt one road, what is one belt one road, xi jinping, china pakistan, cpec, obor china, china news, india news, indian express news Chinese President Xi Jinping ahead of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing (Source: Reuters)

Nepal officially inked the One Belt One Belt (OBOR) deal with China on Friday leaving India as the only South-Asian country not to be involved in the Asian superpower’s ambitious project. The deal, which was  signed in Kathmandu, would allow development of cross-border connectivity and more. With the exception of Bhutan, which has no diplomatic ties with China, every other South Asian country has signed into OBOR. Heads of state of Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Myanmar and high-level delegations from Bangladesh and Nepal will be attending the two-day Belt and Road Forum in China.

So what exactly is OBOR?

Touted as Chinese President Xi Jinping’s ambitious project, the One Belt One Road initiative focuses on improving connectivity and cooperation among Asian countries, Africa, China and Europe. The emphasis is on enhancing land as well as maritime routes. The policy is significant for China since it aims to boost domestic growth in the country. Experts have noted that OBOR is also a part of China’s strategy for economic diplomacy. Considering China’s exclusion from G7, OBOR policy might just provide China an opportunity to continue its economic development.

obor, what is obor, one belt one road, what is one belt one road, xi jinping, china pakistan, cpec, obor china, china news, india news, indian express news Leaders of 28 countries including Russian President Vladimir Putin are set to attend the Chinese summit showcasing Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature foreign policy plan, and will be held in the capital city from May 14-15. (Source: AP Photo)

Why is India opposed to OBOR?

The main reason behind India’s opposition towards the policy is the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which is a part of OBOR. Recent Chinese reports claim that following the launch of CPEC in Pakistan, the country has received investments worth more than $46 billion. “We are all for promoting connectivity… but on the OBOR, our position is that since the so-called CPEC forms a part of OBOR, and it passes through Indian territory, that is where our difficulty lies,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesman Gopal Baglay had said earlier this week. Citing sovereignty issues, India has raised objections over CPEC projects in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). China, however, has not tried to attenuate India’s concerns. “The CPEC is a flagship project, but all countries in South Asia have now confirmed participation in the Belt and Road Forum and are making use of the initiative,” Wang Dehua, Director, Institute for South and Central Asia Studies in Shanghai told Indian Express.

Belt and Road Forum?

Beijing will host the two-day Belt and Road Forum (BRF) starting May 14 facilitating high-level delegations talks among leaders, including 29 Heads of State, on OBOR.  India will not be attending the forum. China Foreign Ministry spokesperson said some Indian scholars would be participating in relevant activities during the Belt and Road Forum.

orob, what is orob, one road one belt, what is one road one belt, orob china, china news, india news, indian express news The Grand National Theatre is illuminated ahead of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing. (Source: Reuters)

Nepal in, India absent: What does this mean for India?

Nepal and India have sustained good bilateral ties. However, with China entering the equation, India might just have a hard time in keeping its status intact. Chinese foreign policy experts have noted that Nepal’s inclusion in OBOR may force India to join the initiative or face exclusion. Hu Shisheng, Director of the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, told The Indian Express: “If India does not participate in the Belt and Road Initiative, something all her neighbours are positive about, then the neighbours will have cause to complain. This is not constructive for India and will reduce its appeal in the region. The neighbours may ask questions like why is India not involved?”

For a more detailed explanation on the policy, click here.

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  1. S
    Shashi Bilga
    May 20, 2017 at 10:18 am
    India's concerns should be taken care of before any final decision on B R F in Beijing.
    Reply
    1. J
      Jai hind..
      May 16, 2017 at 6:12 pm
      We should respect decision taken by our country.. How can we accept cpse? And time will tell angoor khatte they ya zherile the. Don't search political reasons behind.. It's a matter of security..
      Reply
      1. K
        KB
        May 15, 2017 at 1:27 pm
        I would say this in Hindi to all Indians, "angoor khatty hain"
        Reply
        1. K
          Kanwar
          May 14, 2017 at 10:48 pm
          Why INDIAN EXPRESS is so much fearful from PAK IS TAN as it is editing even the name as stan. LOLZ
          Reply
          1. K
            Kanwar
            May 14, 2017 at 10:45 pm
            When stan does not interrupt in Indian internal affairs than why India is taking this opportunity as Ego. What India wants from this protest? that China should skip CPEC? Than Indians are living in a fools paradise.
            Reply
            1. S
              Sabith KP
              May 14, 2017 at 10:08 pm
              Please note OBOR Means One Belt One Road, This article wrongly written as One Belt One Belt
              Reply
              1. H
                Hind
                May 14, 2017 at 8:41 pm
                Plain and simple......F ck neighbours
                Reply
                1. H
                  Hind
                  May 14, 2017 at 8:40 pm
                  plain and simple.... neighbors..........jai hind....
                  Reply
                  1. M
                    Mehara Rakesh
                    May 14, 2017 at 6:07 pm
                    China with OBOR or CPEC or any other investment project, it is giving its additional idle money to poor countries, to develop infrastructure, at very high interest rate and dominating terms. This money he gets back as work is executed by Chinese contractors. The left is infrastructure, and more debt on already poor country. Now when poor country can not repay debt, they have to become slave of China, sell his infrastructure, and become "Yes man" to china for every thing. China can definitely deploy military in that country and poor country can not say NO. China's economy will go up, poor country will get more debt, will become slave. Simple.. Want to see example, see Sri lanka port project, see Myanmar project, see CPEC. About isolation, India being fastest growing economy, is not isolated in any manner. India has also better re tion in the world. Further, India is already well connected with its neighbor with roads and with rest of world by Sea. Do not worry.
                    Reply
                    1. V
                      vickey
                      May 15, 2017 at 10:56 am
                      Lol - what are you - the world's brightest economist ?
                      Reply
                    2. T
                      Tariq Hussain Soomro
                      May 14, 2017 at 4:01 pm
                      POVERTY is the common enemy of stan & India, with CPEC & OBOR we can alleviate poverty and live prosperous life, India should avoid extremism
                      Reply
                      1. T
                        Tariq Hussain Soomro
                        May 14, 2017 at 4:02 pm
                        stan
                        Reply
                        1. T
                          Tariq Hussain Soomro
                          May 14, 2017 at 4:03 pm
                          پاکستان
                      2. T
                        Tauqir Syed
                        May 14, 2017 at 9:08 am
                        Great idea of connecting world and the compel force behind this connectivity is economics. So be compe ive if someone wants to survive. Unfortunately India is not parti ting rather opposing it, resulting in putting themselves in isolation. Best of luck to Modi and his thought process.
                        Reply
                        1. S
                          Support Modi
                          May 14, 2017 at 8:59 am
                          The terrorist neighbor is the only one missing from SAARC satellite. The columnists and many commenters are oblivious to that. Looks like that's why P and JNU junta love commenting here. And some one please fix the comment filters. Checking if Pukestan goes through
                          Reply
                          1. B
                            B
                            May 14, 2017 at 8:29 am
                            If it is not obvious, this is a g name for "Our Roads Our Products", in which China will invest in other countries for one singular reason - movement of her products, and eventually, by extension, her military, if needed. There is absolutely no incentive for India to get into this, because most of India's outbound and inbound goods transportation are taking place through maritime routes, for which India is situated beautifully. China may be trying to wing its influence on India, and India may be giving a lame excuse, but the moment China asks any of the other countries to invest, there won't be any takers!
                            Reply
                            1. G
                              g
                              May 14, 2017 at 6:49 am
                              China does not use local labour of the other countries but only Chinese labour and that benefits only Chinese companies.
                              Reply
                              1. G
                                g
                                May 14, 2017 at 6:48 am
                                Chinese corporations are now doing the same work that the British East India Company did in the eighteenth and nineteenth century - taking resources from the OBOR countries for their benefits and the benefit of Chinese Prince s. Do not do it.
                                Reply
                                1. G
                                  g
                                  May 14, 2017 at 6:48 am
                                  Signing up with China will be signing away your hard fought freedom. Do not do it.
                                  Reply
                                  1. G
                                    g
                                    May 14, 2017 at 6:48 am
                                    It is just a matter of time some crazy terrorist will blow up the roads in Xinxiang and Central Asia. Do not parti te in Chinese neo-imperialism.
                                    Reply
                                    1. G
                                      g
                                      May 14, 2017 at 6:47 am
                                      It is good for India, Australia and an to stay out of this neo-imperial project. China's economy is slowing down and they want to saddle the world with their expensive and expansive mission at the cost of other countries natural resources.
                                      Reply
                                      1. K
                                        kaladadkalimata
                                        May 13, 2017 at 9:16 pm
                                        113 countries are there HINDU SATAN OUT. hindu satan isolated.
                                        Reply
                                        1. R
                                          Rizwan
                                          May 13, 2017 at 7:36 pm
                                          Indian parti tion is necessary for its people. The one belt may connect this w region . When roads will be linked, there is better chance to link people. If Europe can unite despite all wars why this region not. One road will connect this region to w world in a better way. There is some win for every one.
                                          Reply
                                          1. C
                                            Curious onlooker
                                            May 14, 2017 at 7:43 am
                                            China wants to impose its economic hegemony over South Asia. India must resist and actively oppose China's economic and imperialist ambition. It is not just South Asia at risk, also the Near East, South East, the Far East Asia and regional groupings such as Asean and the Pacific groupings automatically to come under its domain. With the help of stan India would be surrounded with military bases and reduced to a vassal state. India's cavalier at ude towards defence has now begun to tell faced with Chinese and stani cooperation against India as their common enemy.
                                            Reply
                                            1. C
                                              Curious onlooker
                                              May 14, 2017 at 7:48 am
                                              Is the new spel for at ude (inclination) at ude?
                                              1. R
                                                Rizwan
                                                May 14, 2017 at 10:30 am
                                                Yes China is trying for his market at the cost of other countries resources , but you can also create ur market. Roads are still better than nothing. The strategic depth idea has robbed billions dollars as millatory expenses, depriving people of progress and people are at a risk of nuclear war.
                                            2. P
                                              Piss Upon
                                              May 13, 2017 at 4:38 pm
                                              Many deliberately mentioned here that this is Modi's mistake. This could happen even it is an UPA govt. The guts (like coordinating with Phillipines, an) Modi's govt. have does not even thought by UPA govts.
                                              Reply
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