Globalization has improved the openness and mobility of innovation elements, accelerated the speed and spread of science and technology around the world, greatly improved the closeness and linkage of the world economy, and promoted economic society with technological innovation. Development has become a global consensus, and upgrading regional innovation capabilities has become an important goal and responsibility of many countries and enterprises. The Belt and Road initiative has brought opportunities for countries along the route to carry out regional innovation cooperation on a larger scale, at a higher level and at a deeper level. Financial cooperation plays a key supporting role in the construction of the Belt and Road and has an important impact on regional innovation in countries along the route.
Based on the concept of regional innovation capability, this paper sorts out the important factors that affect regional innovation. The formation of regional innovation capability depends on a complex network system, which is not only related to the abundance of social resources and innovation process in the region, but also affected by the exchange and flow of internal and external resources. Innovative environment, innovative resources, knowledge flow and industrial clusters are important factors affecting regional innovation capability. With the further development of regional innovation cooperation along the Belt and Road, how to improve the regional innovation capability of the countries along the route and how to analyze the factors that affect the innovation urgently need theoretical support.
On this basis, the paper analyzes the impact of financial cooperation on regional innovation, and analyzes its impact on regional innovation activities from three aspects: financial system, FDI and OFDI. Although the existing literature takes different perspectives in examining the relationship between financial cooperation and regional innovation capability, they basically draw the conclusion that financial cooperation helps to improve regional innovation capability. The Belt and Road initiative extends the level of cooperation between financial cooperation and technological innovation to the national level, and the current research mainly focuses on the impact of coordinated development of domestic financial system, FDI and OFDI on regional innovation capability. To explore the role of international financial cooperation in promoting regional innovation capability, we should start from various aspects such as monetary cooperation, investment and financing cooperation, financial services cooperation, credit cooperation, financial supervision cooperation, and explore effective ways to enhance the regional innovation capability of the Belt and Road countries.
Compared with the traditional financial cooperation, the Belt and Road national financial cooperation is very different in connotation and scope, and in operation mode. According to the theory of cross regional sub regional cooperation, the Belt and Road national financial cooperation is essentially a sub-regional financial cooperation across the border. By promoting the construction of monetary cooperation system, investment and financing system, financial service system, credit cooperation system, and financial supervision cooperation system, it aims to promote the free circulation of funds in the Belt and Road area, and enhance the regulatory coordination among the countries along the route, so as to improve the efficiency of capital allocation and achieve effective identification, response and early warning of all kinds of financial risks. According to the evaluation report on the cooperation degree of the Belt and Road released by the National Information Center, the score of financial connectivity reached 9.86 (full score 20) in 2018. China has carried out various forms of cooperation with the countries along the border in terms of money, investment and financing, financial services, credit, financial supervision and so on. Meanwhile, since the launch of the Belt and Road science and technology innovation action plan in 2017, the Belt and Road countries based on the demand for scientific and technological innovation cooperation, focus on scientific and technological humanities exchanges, jointly build joint laboratories, technology park cooperation, technology transfer, patent applications and other fields, and gradually form the Belt and Road regional innovation cooperation pattern.
To achieve regional innovation and development in the Belt and Road region, we need not only innovative cooperation in science and technology, but also deepening financial cooperation among governments, financial institutions and technology intermediary service institutions along the belt, and establishing and improving regional innovation cooperation mechanism. First, adhering to the principle of equal participation, interest sharing and risk sharing, the Belt and Road countries should deepen the cooperation in investment and financing, and provide financial support for the regional innovation and development of the countries along the route. Second, the Belt and Road countries should also promote the Belt and Road financial service system to achieve network layout, promote the docking of science and technology development strategy along the border, and provide effective financial support for the Belt and Road regional innovation and development. Third, the Belt and Road countries should strengthen cross-border credit cooperation and promote bilateral and multilateral governments or enterprises to carry out scientific and technological innovation cooperation. Finally, the Belt and Road countries should promote financial supervision and coordination, maintain confidence in the regional financial market and stabilize the financial system, so as to ensure the smooth and efficient implementation of the Belt and Road national science and technology innovation projects.
The proposal of the Digital Silk Road has added new contents to the Belt and Road construction, and has highlighted the important role of financial cooperation in the Belt and Road national regional innovation and development. This paper explores the path of and proposes a research framework for financial cooperation to enhance the regional innovation capability of the Belt and Road, as well as possible research and innovation points in this field, providing guidance for national financial cooperation and regional innovation and development along the route. Future research could focus on at least in the following two aspects: On the one hand, based on the Belt and Road national perspective, examining the policy effect and influence of the financial cooperation initiative between China and the Belt and Road countries on regional innovation capability and exploring effective ways to enhance regional innovation capability from the perspectives of monetary cooperation, investment and financing cooperation, financial services cooperation, credit cooperation and financial supervision and coordination. On the other hand, the characteristics of regional innovation activities should be investigated in light of the realistic characteristics of the countries along the Belt and Road.