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The Belt and Road Initiative – Separating Myth from Fact

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Credit Suisse Forum St. Peter

Sankt Peterstrasse 19

8001 Zürich

Switzerland

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Much has been written about China's «Belt and Road Initiative» – the ambitious but also shape-shifting initiative aimed at upgrading the world’s connectivity infrastructure. After a little over five years, the project has expanded to include a «Polar Silk Road» and a «Digital Silk Road», among many other things. Yet much remains unclear about the BRI: How much money is actually being invested? Is the motivation behind the initiative political, economic – or both? Will it bring opportunities for Switzerland and Swiss companies – or does it pose challenges?

Join us as we explore these questions through the format of a «long conversation»: A half-day event combining keynotes and a series of one-on-one conversations on stage between academics, thinkers, politicians and business representatives.

The following speakers will join us on 2 April:

Bruno Maçães, former Portuguese Europe Minister and author of the book «Belt and Road: A Chinese World Order»,
Theresa Fallon, founder and director of the Centre for Russia Europe Asia Studies in Brussels,
Zengxin Li, editor of international business news and editorial board member at Caixin Media,
Tobias Dennehy, head of the global Belt and Road Task Force of Siemens,
Agatha Kratz, Associate Director at Rhodium Group and an Adjunct Fellow in the Reconnecting Asia Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies,
Markus Herrmann, China consultant as well as Co-Head of the Asia program of the Swiss Forum of Foreign Policy, and
Michael O'Sullivan, CIO for the International Wealth Management Division at Credit Suisse.

This event is co-hosted by Credit Suisse.



Bruno Maçães is a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the RDCY and a Senior Advisor at Flint Global in London. He was the Portuguese European Affairs Minister from 2013-2015, and was decorated by Spain and Romania for his services to government. He received his doctorate in political science from Harvard University, and was a research fellow at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington and Carnegie in Brussels. He has written for the Financial Times, Politico, The Guardian and Foreign Affairs, and appears regularly on CNN, the BBC, Bloomberg, Al-Jazeera and CCTV. His book on the new geopolitics, The Dawn of Eurasia, was published in January 2018 in the United Kingdom, in August 2018 in the United States and will be published in China in early 2019.

Theresa Fallon is the founder and director of the Centre for Russia Europe Asia Studies in Brussels. She is concurrently a member of the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific and a nonresident senior fellow of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Her current research is focused on EU-Asia relations, Sino-Russian relations, maritime security, global governance, and China’s Belt & Road Initiative. She has testified to the European Parliament Committee on Foreign Affairs and Subcommittee on Security and Defense. Previously she was a member of the Strategic Advisors Group for the NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) and lived and worked in both Russia and China. She was educated at the University of Chicago, Loyola University and The London School of Economics. Her articles have appeared in American Foreign Policy Interests, The Asan Forum, Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative of CSIS, China Brief, The Diplomat, ISN Security Watch, PlanEcon Energy Report, Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) Newsbrief, War on the Rocks, and other academic publications. She has been featured in international media including the BBC, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and The New York Times.

Zengxin Li, editor of international business news and editorial board member at Caixin Media. Zengxin joined Caixin, one of China’s most respected media outlets in 2010. He specialized in China’s domestic economy and international relations, China’s role in the multilateral institutions and the world economy. Through the years, he has been deputy editor for international news, editor for macroeconomics and U.S. bureau chief. Before joining Caixin, he was a macroeconomics reporter and U.S. correspondent with Caijing Magazine from 2008 to 2009. Prior to that, he was an economic editor with the China Daily website. Zengxin graduated with a master’s degree in economics from University College London.

Tobias Dennehy is responsible for government relations in the Asia Australia region at Siemens Headquarters in Munich. As part of this responsibility, he is heading the global Belt and Road Task Force of Siemens. It is the goal of this Task Force to develop and execute strategies for a Triple Win outcome of BRI for all parties involved. Before his role in government affairs, Tobias Dennehy spent many years in communications and marketing with a focus on corporate storytelling, both within Siemens, as a freelance consultant for major German companies, and a keynote speaker at international conferences. He studied German literature, journalism, communication science and politics in Bamberg, Germany.

Agatha Kratz is an Associate Director at Rhodium Group and leads the development of European opportunities and contributes to research on European Union-China relations, China’s economic diplomacy and outward investment, and the Belt and Road Initiative. She is also a non-resident Adjunct Fellow in the Reconnecting Asia Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and Simon Chair in Political Economy. A Ph.D. candidate at King’s College London studying China’s railway diplomacy, Agatha was previously Associate Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR), Asia & China Program. She was Assistant Editor for the China Economic Quarterly from 2016 to 2017, and served as Editor-in-Chief of China Analysis, ECFR’s quarterly journal, until December 2015. Prior to ECFR she was a Junior Fellow at Asia Centre in Paris. Agatha has a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Masters in Finance from SciencesPo Paris, as well as a Masters in Public Administration from the London School of Economics and Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs.

Markus Herrmann, a Swiss-Chinese, moved from working in corporate governmental affairs in the Chinese market to taking a broader policy research interest in China. Currently, he is the Co-Head of the Asia program of the Swiss Forum of Foreign Policy (SFFP), focusing on China’s foreign policy with the BRI as a research priority. Moreover, he is a Director at Sinolytics LLC providing political analysis-based China management consulting. He is also the Europe Advisor to Caixin Media and a former Visiting Fellow at the Mercator Institute for China Studies (Merics).

Michael O’Sullivan is the Chief Investment Officer for the International Wealth Management division at Credit Suisse. He joined Credit Suisse in July 2007 from State Street Global Markets. Prior to joining Credit Suisse Michael spent over ten years as a global strategist at a number of sell-side institutions and has also taught finance at Princeton and Oxford Universities. He was educated at University College Cork in Ireland and Balliol College in Oxford, where he obtained M.Phil and D.Phil degrees as a Rhodes Scholar. He was an independent member of Ireland’s National Economic Social Council from 2011 to 2016.

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Credit Suisse Forum St. Peter

Sankt Peterstrasse 19

8001 Zürich

Switzerland

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