One Belt One Road: Impacts on Trade and Investment – HKUST IEMS – EY Hong Kong Emerging Market Insights Series

Published on: 2016-09-29


This talk is a part of the HKUST IEMS – EY Hong Kong Emerging Market Insights Series. It is presented by HKUST IEMS with support by EY. Check out the next event in the series at and past events in the series here.

Alicia Garcia-Herrero: One Belt One Road – Impacts on Trade and Investment


Barry Sautman: Localization of Chinese Investments in Africa



One Belt One Road: Impacts on Trade and Investment – HKUST IEMS – EY Hong Kong Emerging Market Insights Series

The Chinese government’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative supports the building of infrastructure and the establishment of stronger ties with over 60 countries. In this panel discussion, two leading scholars offer insights into the following questions:

  • Who will be the winners and losers in international trade under different scenarios?
  • How will OBOR impact Hong Kong’s trade and financial system?
  • Will OBOR-related investment diminish or build industrial capacity in African and other countries?

About the Event

The Belt and Road Initiative (OBOR) which China has embarked on aims at improving cross-border infrastructure so as to reduce transportation costs in a massive geographical area. One of the key questions is whether there will be trade gains to be made thanks to the reduction in transportation costs. Recent empirical literature will be reviewed estimating the impact on trade at a global scale identifying winners and losers for a number of different scenarios. The first focuses on upgrading infrastructure only while a second and third scenario explore the idea of creating a Free Trade Area within the Belt and Road region.

Meanwhile, the OBOR targets several score countries for increased economic and other interaction. It includes several important African states and coincides with Chinese
leaders’ late 2015 pledge to now focus China’s interaction with Africa on contributions to the continent’s industrialization. The question then becomes whether Chinese investment is diminishing African industrial capacity or instead building it. If it is the latter, in what ways does China contribute and to what effect? Are further steps envisaged? How, moreover, does China’s industrialization-related activity impinge on the commonplace negative discourse that emanates from the West about “China-in-Africa.”

About the Speakers

Alicia Garcia Herrero is Chief Economist for Asia Pacific at NATIXIS based in Hong Kong.In previous years Alicia held the following positions: Chief Economist for Emerging Markets at Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA), Member of the Asian Research Program at the Bank of International Settlements (BIS), Head of the International Economy Division of the Bank of Spain, Member of the Counsel to the Executive Board of the European Central Bank (ECB), Head of Emerging Economies at the Research Department of Banco Santander and Economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Alicia has always combined her career in the private and public sectors with a commitment to applied research and teaching. Alicia serves as a non-resident Senior Fellow in several think tanks, in particular BRUEGEL in Brussels, Emerging Market Institute at Johnson Graduate School of Management (Cornell) and at Real Instituto El Cano in Madrid. She is also adjunct professor at HKUST and visiting faculty at China-Europe International Business School (CEIBS) in Shanghai. Alicia is also a member of the Council of Advisor of the Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research (HKIMR).

Alicia holds a PhD in Economics from George Washington University and has published extensively in refereed journals and books. Alicia is also very active with international media (Bloomberg, CNBC, Reuters, Financial Times, and the Wall Street Journal, among others).

Barry Sautman, a political scientist and lawyer, is Professor of Social Science, Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, where he mainly teaches courses on international law, China’s international relations and ethnicity/nationalism. His research has focused on China/Africa links and ethnic politics in China (including Hong Kong). The author of numerous academic articles, his latest monograph in the China/Africa field, co-authored with Yan Hairong, is The Chinese are the Worst?:
Human Rights and Labor Practices in Zambian Mining (Baltimore: Univ. of Maryland, 2012). He and Yan Hairong’s forthcoming book, in 2017 is 中国在非洲:话语与实踐 (China in Africa: Discourse and Practice) (北京:中国社会科学文獻出版社).



Admission is free of charge with limited seats. Refreshments and non-alcoholic beverage will be served before the panel discussion starts.

HKUST IEMS – EY Hong Kong Emerging Market Insights Series

China as the World’s Technology Leader in the 21st Century: Dream or Reality? featuring Naubahar Sharif

The Greek Crisis and the Future of the Eurozone featuring Nobel Prize Winner Sir Christopher Pissarides

Political and Economic Consequences of Demographic Change in Emerging Markets  featuring Jack Goldstone and Albert Park

As Goes Russia, So Goes Europe? featuring Christopher Hartwell

Related Content

[Bio] Alicia Herrero Garcia

[Bio] Barry Sautman 

Blog post on What does China’s ‘belt and road initiative’ mean for EU trade? by Alicia Garcia Herrero and Jianwei Xu for Bruegel

[IEMS Academic Seminar] The Belt and Road from the Other End: A European Perspective by Alicia Herrero Garcia

[IEMS Thought Leadership Brief] Localizing Chinese Enterprises in Africa: from Myths to Policies authored by Barry Sautman

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *