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AUSTRALIAN
MARXIST
REVIEW

Journal of the Communist Party of Australia

ISSUE 69December 2018

“One Belt One Road”: to initiate new globalisation

Globalisation means that all countries, nationalities and regions are mutually dependent, influenced and restricted; global relationships are gradually tightened; the world is compressed to a single whole and; people live on a global scale and develop and form global ideologies and ideas. Centred on economic globalisation, the concept of globalisation involves the aspects of politics, culture, science and technology, military, security, ideology, ways of life and values.

1. Globalisation is a necessity of human society development

Globalisation is a long cause and speeds up with social development. It began with the great geographic discoveries of the 15th century and will end at the formation of a communist society, where people will eliminate restrictions on productive relations and productivity and become freely and fully developed individuals. At this time, the history of humanity will become world history; the world will become a community of free individuals.

Improvements in productivity and socialisation promote the progress of globalisation. Each technological breakthrough has greatly pushed forward the process of globalisation. Surmounting the narrow range of traditional society, globalisation is about to connect the whole world, organising the division of work and resource distribution as well as production and consumption across the world so as to enhance efficiency. This expanding space will in turn open broader roads and increase the socialisation of production, causing significant influences on culture, society, political and legal systems, production and living, and even people’s behaviour, thinking and habits.

Globalisation is an inevitable result of the development and regulation of systems. Some international organisations, rules and conventions are established to standardise international behaviour, coordinate the contradictions and conflicts of various countries, and facilitate international cooperation and exchange, thus greatly reducing the cost of globalisation and accelerating its pace.

2. Capitalist-dominated globalisation is unfair and unsustainable

Globalisation is not a natural historic process, but the result of the great efforts of capitalist society. In pursuit of profit maximisation, capitalism continuously crosses the borders of regions and countries, expands, divides labour and distributes resources globally, and incorporates the whole world into its commercial system.

On the other hand, the development of globalisation brings huge profits to capitalism, solidifies and fully validates the capitalism’s governance. Meanwhile, globalisation expands capital space, alleviates the contradictions and dilemmas of capitalism, eases crisis and domestic class contradictions and postpones the decline and fall of capitalism. Capitalist-dominated globalisation is unfair globalisation, which maximises profit through a series of particular systems, and enables capitalism to control the world, so as to make developing countries dependant on it. Its results include increasingly imbalanced global economic development, widening gaps between rich and poor countries, weakness of sustainable economic development, turmoil in world politics, the threat of war, the growing influence of terrorism, extremism and separatist forces, the rise of populism and far-right forces; ecological degradation and increasingly clear ecological disasters; great conflicts between cultures and values, the spread of extreme individualism, materialism, consumerism and hedonism around the world, and the squeezing, reduction and disappearance of national traditional cultures; solidification of social stratification, an increase in social conflicts, major threats to public security and order, severe challenges to social insurance systems, and the alienated, empty and dispirited status of people’s lives. Such globalisation does not benefit humanity, but pushes the world to a dangerous situation, so it is actually a violation of the development trend of history. The rise of trade protectionism and nationalism, the surge of a world anti-globalisation tide, and the sustainability of world financial crisis indicate that capitalist-dominated globalisation will come to its end and be replaced by a new type of globalisation.

3. The development of a new globalisation is the inevitable result of historical development

Russia’s October Revolution, the establishment of the socialist system, and continuous independence and liberation of colonies and semi-colonies in Africa and Latin America stopped the process of capitalist-dominated globalisation. These countries took various measures to maintain their national sovereignty and territorial integrity, to develop their national economies and initiated various systems of socialist values or traditional national values and culture, with the aim of breaking away from the control of imperialism and taking a road of independent development. To maintain their legal rights and interests, some countries formed political and economic alliances and started a new cause of globalisation in practice. Unfortunately, at the end of 1980s, as the Soviet Union disintegrated and Eastern European socialism collapsed, developing countries had to depend on developed capitalist countries due to development difficulties. Capitalist globalisation recovered and developed rapidly, regaining its dominant position in the cause of globalisation.

China, Vietnam and other socialist countries drew lessons from the fate of the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, and according to the requirements of productive force socialization, caught the historical opportunity provided by the international division of labour and global industry transfer. They opened up to the outside world and implemented market economy oriented reforms, positively participated in globalisation, utilized the globalisation platform to seek their own development, and gradually improved their influence and discourse power in international competitions. It can be said to some extent that socialist countries have resumed the push for socialist globalisation after a period of retreat.

New globalisation is essentially different from capitalist-oriented globalisation. The purpose of the latter is to maximize the value of capital, maintain oppression and domination over other countries and nationalities and to preserve the governing position of capital; while the former is based on the principle of equality, mutual benefit and cooperation. It is intended to increase the well-being of the whole human race, broaden people’s vision, and move towards the goal of full human freedom and liberation. Capitalist-oriented globalisation results in uneven development, which is reflected through imbalanced development in different fields and the gaps between countries, regions, classes and hierarchies; while new globalisation is an authentic and thorough globalisation as it achieves balanced development in various fields, countries, regions, classes and hierarchies. Finally, the two types of globalisation have different development prospects: capitalist-oriented globalisation will finally be terminated due to its limitations, while new globalisation which eliminates systemic barriers has infinite space for development, so it is more able to pursue the authentic and thorough globalisation. Therefore, new globalisation is also an inevitable result of the development of new social productive forces. It surpasses and abandons capitalist-oriented globalisation. This higher-level globalisation is an irresistible trend of globalisation.

4. “Belt and Road” is an important measure to advance new globalisation

In 2013, President Xi Jinping proposed the “Belt and Road” initiative as a necessary Chinese scheme to adapt to new globalisation and overcome capitalist-oriented globalisation. The proposal has attracted international attention and become an important strategic measure for advancing new globalisation.

According to “‘One Belt One Road’ Vision and Actions”, the “Belt and Road” geographically covers the European, Asian and African continents, connects the active East Asian economic circle on one end and the developed European economic circle at the other end, and involves most of the developing and underdeveloped countries of the region in between. It incorporates over 70 countries and regions, with a combined population of 4.4 billion and 40 percent of the world’s GDP, into the globalisation process, thus achieving all-around cooperation, exchange and interconnection among countries. China has concluded over 110 cooperative agreements with 103 countries and international organisations, and become the biggest trade partner of the 25 countries participating in “Belt and Road”. In addition, “Belt and Road” is highly open and has infinite space for development. It is not limited to countries along the routes, but can be extended to any countries and regions willing to join. It is expected in the near future that more countries will become participants in the initiative. The scale of “Belt and Road” is far beyond any regional organizations or groups, and can be stretched to all countries, regions and fields in the world. So it can be said that “Belt and Road” is really a global development strategy.

Secondly, “Belt and Road” offers inexhaustible impetus to new globalisation. The spirit and principle of “Belt and Road” is highly consistent with new globalisation. It sticks to the principle of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration and upholds the Silk Road spirit of peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit. The initiative, based on voluntary participation, equal consultation and concerted efforts and respect for sovereignty and the core interests of all countries and regions, highlights cooperation and mutual benefit and enables all countries to participate equally in global governance. Therefore, it can attract and mobilize many countries to actively participate and play to their competitive resource advantages so as to fully and reasonably distribute resources around the world, maximise benefits, enable all participants to evenly share the results of globalisation, and greatly accelerate the process of new globalisation.

Thirdly, “Belt and Road” overcomes the abuses of the past globalisation and makes new contributions to deepen globalisation. Capitalist-oriented globalisation results in wealth gaps and imbalanced development in different regions and fields. It can lead developing countries into trouble, and cause insurmountable obstacles to the progress of globalisation led by developed countries. With the focus on road connection, unimpeded trade, currency circulation, policy coordination, and strengthened people-to-people ties (a five-pronged approach), and the goal of building a community of shared interests, responsibility and shared future on the basis of political mutual trust, economic integration and cultural inclusiveness, “Belt and Road” promotes the cooperation and exchange between countries along the routes, enables them to share dividends, experiences and the lessons of China’s reform and development and lays a solid foundation for long and sound development of the world economy by using its own advantages of productivity, technology, money, experience and model. It also looks at building a more equal and balanced global partnership, accelerating construction of a harmonious world of lasting peace, universal security and common prosperity, and creating new regional cooperation modes.

Finally, “Belt and Road” provides an institutional and legal guarantee for the development of new globalisation. A series of bilateral and multi-lateral cooperative agreements have been reached around the “Belt and Road” initiative. Bilateral and multi-lateral joint working mechanisms and organizational systems have been established, facilitating and standardising the strategic, economic and cultural exchanges and cooperation among various countries, such as the Boao Forum for Asia, Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), China-ASEAN Expo and Euro-Asia Economic Forum. “Belt and Road” establishes and strengthens various institutional arrangements, for example, it makes full use of current institutions, such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), China and ASEAN (10 plus 1) Summit, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), and Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) to provide various institutional frameworks and guarantees. Moreover, the Silk Road Fund, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, and BRICS Bank offer financial and technical support to the development of the “Belt and Road” economies and trade.

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