IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde noted the achievements of the BRI at a conference in Beijing on April 12, and praised this project, as IMF fights against protectionism, a threat to global trade.
Lagarde warned, however, about possible debt risks linked to the financing of megaprojects in fragile states. For these states, it is a matter of selecting infrastructure projects that are possible to finance without endangering their entire economy. China is already working to select even more carefully projects developed under the BRI framework.
It can be noted that China is taking an increasingly multilateral stance and is ready to cooperate with the IMF on several projects. There is no competition between China and international institutions as opponents the BRI seek to demonstrate. The IMF and China will cooperate to refine China’s expertise in the field of international cooperation with the opening of several China-IMF Capacity Development Centers.
Cooperation between the IMF and China on the BRI program will reassure the international community over the BRI ability to carry out major development projects.
Beijing knows that a financial crisis caused by a BRI-related project would threaten the whole Belt and Road Initiative, so it is clear that Beijing takes this issue very seriously to ensure the financial capacity of the states involved in the new Silk Roads, and approves all cooperative actions with international institutions.