PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2019, Vol. 38 ›› Issue (7): 951-962.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2019.07.001

• Special Column: the Belt and Road Initiative •     Next Articles

The Belt and Road production networks and China’s participation

Zhi ZHENG1,2,3(), Weidong LIU1,2,3,*(), Zhouying SONG1,2,3, WUZHATI Yeerken1,2,3, Yi LIANG4   

  1. 1.Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    3. College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    4. Land Consolidation and Rehabilitation Center, Ministry of Natural Resources, Beijing 100035, China
  • Received:2018-12-25 Revised:2019-02-22 Online:2019-07-28 Published:2019-07-28
  • Contact: Weidong LIU;
  • Supported by:
    Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Class A), No. Y88P1100YT.


With the deepening of globalization, the global production networks have become the most important organizational platform for coordinating and organizing global production activities. The Belt and Road initiative marks the beginning of the era of inclusive globalization, and China will be more quickly and deeply integrated into the global production networks. In this context, whether there is a stable production network connection within the Belt and Road region and how deeply China participates in such network are very meaningful research topics. Based on the perspective of global production networks, this study conducted quantitative research with methods such as input-output analysis, value-added decomposition, and network analysis. The results show that: 1) During 1995-2015, the connection of the internal production networks of the Belt and Road region intensified continuously. 2) China is at the core and the first position in the value flow of the Belt and Road production networks, and this advantage was constantly strengthened. 3) The spatial distribution of China's added value sources have the characteristics of decreasing from east to west and high concentration in southeast, and Southeast Asia is the most important source of China's value added. 4) China's acquisition of value added from finished products along the Belt and Road is inefficient. Confronting the dilemma of "low-level lock-in", China needs to upgrade its value capture capability. According to the above results, China should increase spatial integration and maximize production cooperation with the Belt and Road region, at the same time, carry out industrial upgrading, improve the efficiency of value-added acquisition, and find new growth points for China's economic development.

Key words: global production networks, input-output analysis, value flow, network analysis, pattern change, the Belt and Road Initiative