#67 – European Responses to China’s Belt & Road Initiative

event #67, Thursday, May 3rd, 2018



Romano PRODI
President of the European Commission (1999-2005); Prime Minister of Italy (1996-1998; 2006-2008)

WANG Jianye 王建业

Professor and Dean, Guangzhou Institute of International Finance; Former Managing Director, Silk Road Fund (2015-2018)




One year ago, ThinkIN China invited Romano Prodi, former President of the European Commission and former Italian Prime Minister, to speak on the future of Europe after Brexit – the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union. Being widely viewed as a huge step back in Europe’s integration process, this unexpected event gave rise to numerous questions on the challenges for the EU, that went along with it. Brexit constitutes a symptom of a general EU malaise. Euroscepticism and populist movements are on the rise because EU citizens don’t perceive the European Union to address their concerns. The absence of unity and political coordination is moreover undermining the EU’s role on the international stage as well as its efficiency in responding to new challenges and opportunities, such as China’s Belt and Road Initiative, to whom the EU has not defined a unified policy yet. Southern and Eastern European countries are more open to Chinese investments compared to the leading European economies, which are concerned about an influential role of China in their internal affairs. Indeed,  most of Chinese investments have landed in Germany, France, and Italy which are also the countries that are willing to create an EU-wide investment screening mechanism to control foreign investments in Europe as wells as to protect crucial industrial sectors and infrastructures. However, Portugal, Greece, and Cyprus, as well as some Eastern European countries, are not in favor of this initiative. While preparations for the China-EU summit in July 2018 are already well underway, the internal debate on how to adequately respond to the BRI is still going on within the EU.

In the upcoming ThinkIN China event, Romano Prodi and Wang Jianye, dean of Guangzhou Institute of International Finance and former executive director of the Silk Road Fund, will discuss the challenges and opportunities that the Belt and Road Initiative has brought to Europe and shed light on the various responses that European countries are giving to the most intriguing and ambitious geopolitical initiative of the XXI century.



In order to RSVP send your name & affiliation to events@thinkinchina.asia. Please note that there’s a limited number of seats, therefore successful confirmation of registration will be sent according on a first-come-first-served basis.


Time: 18.00 – Registration commences; 18.50 – Registration closes
Venue: The Bridge Cafe
Location: Rm 8, Bldg 12, Chengfu lu, Beijing 北京市海淀区成府路五道口华清嘉园12号楼8号
Price: FREE



  1.  An ID must be shown upon arrival
  2. Registration will start at 18.00
  3. Guests will not be allowed to enter after the registration closes at 18.45
  4. In order to speed up security procedures at the entrance, large items are not recommended to be carried



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