Chinese President Xi Jinping attends the Roundtable Summit Phase One Sessions of the Belt and Road Forum. Photo: Reuters, Lintao Zhang

A new survey showed Japanese companies have little interest in the China-led One Belt, One Road initiative, with only 5% saying they would participate.

Out of 220 Japanese companies that responded to a Reuters survey, about a third believed a potential bilateral trade agreement between the US and Japan would boost business opportunities, while only 6% saw opportunities in China-led infrastructure investment.

“Japanese businesses basically have no clear idea about the ‘Belt and Road’ projects,” Toru Nishihama of Dai-ichi Life Research Institute was quoted by Reuters as saying.

“Will any projects pay? Can Japanese firms expect a level playing field when they compete with Chinese state-owned enterprises?” he asked. “A lot of questions remain unanswered. Under such circumstances, companies have no choice but to wait and see.”