Apr 27, 2019

Xi Jinping claims $64 billion in deals at Belt and Road forum

Xi Jinping speaking after the Belt and Road forum on April 27, 2019. Photo: Wang Zhao - Pool/Getty Images

Chinese President Xi Jinping said Saturday that the country's second Belt and Road forum resulted in $64 billion worth of deals among business leaders, the AFP reports.

What's new: Italy, Yemen, Equatorial Guinea, Liberia, Luxembourg, Jamaica, Peru, Barbados and Cyprus are the latest countries to join China's sprawling infrastructure initiative, which, critics say, benefits China at the expense of its partners and leads to unsustainable debt. Xi reportedly did not disclose more details about his claims of creating $64 billion in deals at the forum.

Buzz: Xi issued a joint press release at the forum's close with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, and Russia's Vladimir Putin, who took the opportunity to criticize President Trump's ongoing trade war with China. Russia has benefitted the most in the aftermath of these tariffs, along with Brazil, as China turns to other countries for imports of "animal, vegetable, paper, and mineral products" it used to get from the U.S.

What we're watching: Xi and other world leaders pledged to keep the Belt and Road initiative green amid concerns of negative environmental impact, largely due to the plan's focus on coal-fired power plants.

Go deeper: World leaders gather in Beijing for second Belt and Road forum

Go deeper

Updated 17 mins ago - World

In photos: People around the world rally against racism

Despite a ban on large gatherings implemented in response to the coronavirus pandemic, protesters rally against racism in front of the American Embassy in Paris on June 6. Photo: Julien Mattia/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Tens of thousands of people have continued to rally in cities across the world against racism and show their support this week for U.S. demonstrators protesting the death in police custody of George Floyd.

Why it matters: The tense situation in the U.S. has brought the discussion of racism and discrimination onto the global stage at a time when most of the world is consumed by the novel coronavirus.

Updates: George Floyd protests enter 12th day

Protesters in Washington, D.C. on June 6. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Thousands of demonstrators are gathering in cities across the U.S. and around the world to protest the killing of George Floyd. Huge crowds have assembled in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and Chicago for full-day events.

Why it matters: Twelve days of nationwide protest in the U.S. has built pressure for states to make new changes on what kind of force law enforcement can use on civilians and prompted officials to review police conduct.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7:30 p.m. ET: 6,852,810 — Total deaths: 398,211 — Total recoveries — 3,071,142Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7:30 p.m. ET: 1,917,080 — Total deaths: 109,702 — Total recoveries: 500,849 — Total tested: 19,778,873Map.
  3. Public health: Why the pandemic is hitting minorities harder — Coronavirus curve rises in FloridaHow racism threatens the response to the pandemic Some people are drinking and inhaling cleaning products in attempt to fight the virus.
  4. Tech: The pandemic is accelerating next-generation disease diagnostics — Robotics looks to copy software-as-a-service model.
  5. Business: Budgets busted by coronavirus make it harder for cities to address inequality Sports, film production in California to resume June 12 after 3-month hiatus.
  6. Education: Students and teachers flunked remote learning.