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How Old is the Belt and Road Initiative Long Term Patterns of Chinese Exports to BRI Economies (Inglês)

In this note, we look at trade data to answer a simple question: When did the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) really start? The BRI was officially announced in 2013 during President Xi Jinping's visits to Kazakhstan and Indonesia, which took place in September and October of that year, respectively. By then, however, the pattern of Chinese exports had already seen significant changes. Trade data indicate that the group of BRI countries had already seen more than a decade of steady rise in importance as a destination for Chinese exports. This growth is evident when we focus on infrastructure-related goods and on the set of countries where BRI infrastructure projects are being built or planned.




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