May 15, 2017 / 2:44 AM / in 5 months

China's Xi says Belt and Road needs to reject protectionism

BEIJING, May 15 (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Monday that the Belt and Road Initiative needs to reject protectionism and avoid fragmentation.

Addressing other world leaders at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, Xi added that rail, road and other infrastructure cooperation needs to be sped up and financing costs reduced.

Xi pledged $124 billion on Sunday for his new Silk Road which aims to bolster China’s global leadership ambitions by expanding links between Asia, Africa, Europe and beyond, as U.S. President Donald Trump promotes “America First”.

Reporting by Brenda Goh and Sue-Lin Wong; Writing by Philip Wen; Editing by Michael Perry

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