China deal opens Belt and Road plan to Scots firms

The Scottish Chambers of Commerce (SCC) said it signed an historic Memorandum of Understanding with the China Chamber of International Commerce (CCOIC) that opens China’s multi-trillion-dollar, globe-spanning “Belt and Road” infrastructure programme to Scottish businesses.

The agreement, which was signed as part of the Belt and Road Trade & Investment Forum in Beijing, was reached on the eve of a 10-day SCC-led Trade Mission to Shenzhen, Beijing and Shandong Province.

The mission is expected to deliver substantial trade agreements for participating Scottish businesses.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative, a central policy of China’s President Xi Jinping, is aimed at linking China to the West via a land and maritime infrastructure network across Eurasia.

It is estimated to require between $4 trillion and $8 trillion of investment.

The 11-point Belt and Road MoU was signed by David Valentine, SCC’s International Trade Ambassador for China and Sun Xiao, Director General for Multilateral Cooperation with the China Chamber of International Commerce (CCOIC).

Valentine said: “This is an historic agreement that will give Scottish businesses enhanced access to one of the most ambitious and visionary infrastructure plans of the modern era.

“It marks a step change in the development of B2B links between Scotland and China. Forging relationships such as these is the key to improving Scotland’s share of UK trade with the world’s most populous nation.“

Liz Cameron, chief executive of Scottish Chambers of Commerce will on Saturday address a major international conference in Shenzhen, hosted by China’s key internationalisation body, the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs (SAFEA).