Tue, 09 Aug 2022

ATHENS, June 29 (Xinhua) -- The Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII) proposed by the U.S. and presented during the latest Group of Seven (G7) summit is unlikely to materialize, a Greek expert told Xinhua in Athens on Wednesday.

The Partnership is aimed at countering the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and China, but is really a communication tool to show the global audience that the U.S. retains hegemony, said Greek international relations scholar Pelagia Karpathiotaki.

G7 leaders this week laid out plans to mobilize some 600 billion U.S. dollars in funding over the next five years for infrastructure investment to support the developing world.

However, Karpathiotaki pointed to an initiative announced by the U.S. at last year's G7 Summit, called Build Back Better World (B3W), which has so far yielded just 6 million U.S. dollars in global infrastructure construction.

B3W was supposed to narrow a 40 trillion U.S. dollar gap in infrastructure investment for developing countries.

If the G7 countries were really concerned about the poor infrastructure situation in low-income countries, they could have launched similar programs much earlier, said Karpathiotaki.

"It is obvious that the PGII ... is another geopolitical tool that aims to intensify decoupling tendencies and is a means to counter the Belt and Road Initiative and China," she added.

However, according to Karpathiotaki, the PGII is unlikely to come to fruition for various reasons. Today, G7 countries and their societies face huge economic challenges, therefore it will be almost impossible to mobilize state resources for PGII purposes, she explained.

Meanwhile, it is extremely difficult to mobilize private resources, since private organizations are motivated by profit, not politics.

For Karpathiotaki, who is also a researcher at the Beijing-based University of International Business and Economics, the PGII just serve to show that the U.S. still has the power and resources to design global initiatives after the West's failure to confront Russia.

PGII is also a means for U.S. President Joe Biden to prove to American citizens his resolve to counter China's increasing political influence, in a bid to woo voters in the approaching midterm elections, Karpathiotaki said.

"The announcement of the PGII may in addition serve as a psychological comfort to the leaders of the G7 countries, giving them the feeling that they are contributing to global affairs," said the expert.

"But it is obvious that developing countries are no longer satisfied with promises, especially when there is an alternative proposal such as BRI," she said.

Sign up for Greece News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!