Social Sciences in China, 2021
Vol. 42, No. 4, 2021
The Belt and Road Initiative and International Law: Viewed from the Perspective of the Supply of International Public Goods
The international community is facing the dilemma of an insufficient supply of public goods due to the conjunction of various forces and factors including the profound impact of the economic crisis, increased trade protectionism, changes in the global governance system and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a non-rivalrous and non-excludable public good provided to the international community by China as a responsible major country in the new era of historical development. International law has an important role in promoting and guaranteeing the supply of international public goods (IPGs). Since the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, the international governance environment has changed dramatically, with the rule of law being the basic premise and important guarantee of the long-term and smooth implementation of the BRI. In pursuing the BRI, buttressed as it is by the rule of law, China should pay attention to diversified governance based on a combination of international soft and hard law and make judicious use of existing bilateral, regional and multilateral international legal mechanisms. In addition, China must also pay close attention to the latest developments in international economic and trade rules and must innovate and improve its ability to supply rules for investment, trade liberalization, etc. Buttressed by international law, the BRI should focus not only on recent concrete initiatives in trade and investment liberalization, but also on the long-term planning and sustainable development of institutional supply, so as to realize the vision and goals of the BRI.
Keywords: BRI, international public goods, BRI buttressed by the rule of law, international governance, international law