President Biden on Sunday restarted a global infrastructure initiative aimed at countering China’s growing influence and said the US would allocate $200 billion to efforts to raise public and private funding to boost projects in developing and middle-income countries .
Describing the globe as at a tipping point, Biden said the Group of Seven (G-7) nations’ initiative would help put the world on a strong path for the future by investing in sustainable projects that “are on based on our shared values. ”
“It is based on global best practices – transparency, partnership, protecting labor and the environment,” Biden said in a speech at the G-7 summit in Germany on Sunday.
“We provide better ways for countries and/or people around the world to invest in critical infrastructure that… improves their lives, improves our lives and brings real benefits to all of our people,” he continued.
In addition to US pledges, Biden said the G-7 would collectively aim to mobilize $600 billion for the partnership by 2027. The $200 billion in funding the US has pledged over the next five years is a combination of federal funding, grants and private sector investment, according to a White House briefing distributed ahead of Biden’s comments.
The plan, dubbed the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment, is a rebranding of the Build Back Better World initiative that Biden unveiled at last year’s G-7 summit. The partnership was originally named after Biden’s sweeping domestic political agenda, which has since stalled in Congress.
The White House fact sheet said officials in the Biden administration traveled to countries over the past year to hear from countries on how the initiative is meeting their needs, improving coordination with other G-7 nations and “breakthrough deals.” complete”.
Biden on Sunday highlighted a handful of projects the initiative is already funding, including a new facility in Senegal that will make vaccines for COVID-19 and other diseases.
The initiative focuses on four pillars: combating climate change and investing in clean energy; building a secure and open internet and information systems; promoting equality and gender equality; and modernization of health infrastructure.
While Biden didn’t specifically mention China in his remarks Sunday, the initiative is widely seen as an attempt to counter China’s 2013 Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to invest in infrastructure development in dozens of countries.
Biden argued Sunday that the investments would have tangible benefits for Americans and other G-7 nations, saying the initiative offers democracies a chance to prove they can deliver over autocracies.
“I want to be clear: this is not an aid or charity. It’s an investment that will pay off for everyone, including the American people and the people of all our nations. It will boost all of our economies and it’s a chance for us to share our positive vision for the future and allow communities around the world to see themselves and see the tangible benefits of partnering with democracies,” Biden said .
“When democracies show what we can do – everything we have to offer – I have no doubt that we will win the competition every time,” he said.