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19 Apr 2017
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One Belt One Road (OBOR) is arguably one of the biggest stories in today’s Asia business sector, covering 60 countries and accounting for about 65 per cent of the world’s population, one-third of the world’s GDP, and about a quarter of all the goods and services the world moves. It consists of the 'Belt', the land-based 'Silk Road Economic Belt', connecting China through to the Middle East and Europe; and the oceangoing '21st Century Maritime Silk Road' that extends through Southeast Asia, the Oceania and North Africa through several contiguous water bodies.
OBOR has the potential to be the world’s largest platform for regional collaboration. The infrastructure projects will stimulate economic growth and build legacy for countries along the way.
How much would such a transformational programme cost?
It is estimated that the total cost lies somewhere between $4 and $8 trillion US dollars, meaning that realising the full potential of the OBOR initiative is beyond even the investment ability of the Chinese government and institutions, and is therefore going to need significant private sector involvement.
This, however, means that each element of the initiative needs to have a positive investment case in order to attract financing. Whilst we are already seeing a shift amongst Chinese agencies and institutions towards broader funding avenues such as pension funds, overseas sovereign wealth funds and private equity funds, further private sector involvement is required due to the ambitious scale of the projects.
This brings a range of wider considerations in attracting private sector investment. Whilst it is well known that investment is available in the market, matching this to viable projects is the critical gap that OBOR, like many other major projects, needs to address.
Based on my experiences with Atkins and Atkins Acuity, the advisory business of the Atkins Group, there are seven areas that a private sector investor would consider when an opportunity is presented.
Evidence shows that there is no deficiency in available funds, but there are gaps in bringing bankable projects to the table. In focusing on these seven key areas, we believe we are going to see more infrastructure projects being realised that are crucial to the development of many countries.
Local contacts in our regional offices can be found in the Locations section.
Local language websites exist for Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Asia Pacific. To see a full list of our websites, go to the Our websites page.
In the Sector and Service part of the website, relevant regional contacts have been identified.
Faithful+Gould is a member of the Atkins group of companies.
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