Strengthened People-to-people Ties
People-to-people ties provide an anchor for the Belt and Road Initiative. Without such an anchor, the strategic goal of connecting diverse cultures and different countries would be out of reach. Increased interaction and mutual understanding, greater awareness of potential benefits from expanded cooperation, and more participation are therefore indispensable to the initiative’s success.
To this end, the countries along the Belt and Road are encouraged to step up friendly cooperation in the Silk Road tradition by promoting extensive cultural, academic, scientific, media, and other people-to-people exchanges, including those between youths, women, and volunteer groups, so as to consolidate public support for bilateral and multilateral cooperation. Specific measures include: Exchanges could be pursued between non-governmental organizations; the role of political parties and parliaments in promoting bilateral and multilateral interaction should be strengthened; collaboration between think tanks is also encouraged in conducting research and sponsoring forums on issues of common concern; and dialogues between civilizations and religions could be fostered through increased exchanges between cultural and media organizations.