nal proportions. But nothing can obliterate the tangible benefits the development initiative has brought. In less than six
years, the nascent Belt and Road are already changing development landscapes in multiple places and dime
nsions. Thanks to the initiative, East Africa has seen its first expressway, the Maldives its first cross-sea bridge, Belar
us its own car-manufacturing enterprise, and landlocked Kazakhstan finally has access to the sea.
And while China-Cambodia trade may not look to be in perfect balan
ce at this point, Belt and Road cooperation between the two neighbors is laying a solid fo
undation for the latter’s future progress. Take the Sihanoukville Special Economic Zone for instance. An exem
plary project under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, it is expected to host 300 enterprises, create 100,0
00 industrial jobs, and serve as a resident-friendly new community housing 200,000 people.
A slew of new policies aimed at encouraging consumption
in key sectors will be unveiled soon, China Securities Journal reported.
rcent year-on-year to 9.78 trillion yuan ($1.46 trillion) in the January-M
arch period, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). In March alone, retail sales went up 8.7 pe
rcent to 3.17 trillion yuan, quickening from the 8.2-percent rise seen in the first two months.
In recent years, the government has, on the one hand, frequently intro
duced policies to promote opening-up, increase import and improve consumer welfare. On
the other hand, it has reduced and scrapped import tariffs on some consumer goo
ds. This has played an active role in consumption, Lian Ping, chief economist at Bank of Comm
unication said, adding that consumption still is the key driver for economic growth.