Religions in the New Silk Road (Belt and Road Initiative BRI, former OBOR)

“Religions in OBOR” (RIO) is a new international research programme 2018-2022 initiated by the Academy of Religions at Minzu University of China, supported by and collaborated with GAF.

Religions play an important role in the countries of the “One Belt One Road” (OBOR), the Initiative of China. OBOR unites over 63 countries from Indonesia East, South and Central Asia to Middle East, Europe and East Africa. All world religions (Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism, Shintoism etc.) and many minority religions are present and influence in different ways business, economy, social and public life. 

The five-year programme has three goals:

1. Researching on the contribution of religions for sustainable, harmonious and peaceful (business) relations between OBOR countries;

2. Increasing knowledge, mutual respect and cooperation through research and dialogue;

3. Informing governments, business and media (in China and OBOR countries) on the impact of religion on OBOR’s success.

In 2023, as part of the OBOR/Belt and Road Initiative BRI, the contact between the Minzu University in China and ethics institutions in Ethiopia have been established.