The Middle East is vital for Chinese President Xi Jinping’s One Belt, One Road project. On April 6, Beirut hosted a conference, whose aim, according to the sponsors, was “confirming Lebanon on the One Belt, One Road map, and strengthening its position as a major hub for China’s exposure to the Middle East and North Africa region in business, trade, finance, infrastructure, culture and tourism.” In this interview,Yang Guang, the director-general of the Institute of West-Asian and African Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, who was in Beirut at the time, discusses the impact of the One Belt, One Road project on the Middle East.