New economic corridors: IMEC and Nizhne Leninskoye–Tongjiang

During the summit of G20 leaders in New Delhi, they announced the emergence of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC). IMEC is a transnational rail and shipping route spanning two continents that aims to boost economic development by improving Asia’s connections and economic integration with the Gulf states and Europe. It will consist of two separate corridors – the eastern one, connecting India with the Persian Gulf, and the northern one, connecting Europe with the Persian Gulf. The new venture also intends to compete with China’s Belt and Road initiative.

China and Russia will invest 160 million USD into a “land grain corridor” to transport food produced in the Urals, Siberia and the Russian Far East. The Nizhneleninskoye-Tongjiang Grain Terminal will be between Vladivostok and Heilongjiang Province in northeastern China. Compared to last year, Sino-Russian trade increased by 32% to reach 155 billion USD in the first eight months of 2023. Moreover, China has just signed bilateral cooperation agreements with Venezuela in economy, trade and tourism.

Brazil, Uruguay, Bolivia and Paraguay criticised the “unilateral and arbitrary” tax that Argentina began imposing this year on merchant ships passing through the Parana River. According to Argentina’s neighbours, the transit fee is $1.47 per tonne, violating international law. It hits Paraguay, which operates one of the world’s largest fleets of river barges – the Parana transport accounts for approximately 80% of its foreign trade.

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