G-7 leaders aim to raise $833b to counter China’s Belt & Road
Group of Seven (G-7) leaders on Sunday pledged to raise $600 billion (S$833 billion) in private and public funds over five years to finance needed infrastructure in developing countries and counter China’s older, multi-trillion-dollar Belt and Road project.
US President Joe Biden and other G-7 leaders relaunched the newly renamed “Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment,” at their annual gathering being held this year at Schloss Elmau in southern Germany.
Biden said the United States would mobilise US$200 billion in grants, federal funds and private investment over five years to support projects in low- and middle-income countries that help tackle climate change as well as improve global health, gender equity and digital infrastructure.
“I want to be clear. This isn’t aid or charity. It’s an investment that will deliver returns for everyone,” Biden said, adding that it would allow countries to “see the concrete benefits of partnering with democracies.”
Putin to make first foreign trips since launching Ukraine war
Vladimir Putin will visit two small former Soviet states in central Asia this week, Russian state television reported on Sunday, in what would be the Russian leader’s first known trip abroad since ordering the invasion of Ukraine.
Russia’s Feb 24 invasion has killed thousands of people, displaced millions more and led to severe financial sanctions from the West, which Putin says are a reason to build stronger trade ties with other powers such as China, India and Iran.
Pavel Zarubin, the Kremlin correspondent of the Rossiya 1 state television station, said Putin would visit Tajikistan and Turkmenistan and then meet Indonesian President Joko Widodo for talks in Moscow.
Four dead, dozens injured as stands collapse in Colombia bullring
At least four people were killed and another 30 seriously injured on Sunday when the grandstand at a bullring in Colombia collapsed during an event, officials said.
“There are four people dead at the moment – two women, a man and a child,” the governor of Tolima department, Jose Ricardo Orozco, told local radio after the incident in the central city of El Espinal.
A full three-storey section of wooden stands filled with spectators collapsed, throwing dozens of people to the ground, according to images broadcast on social media.