Global development strategies generate lucrative business opportunities for stakeholders in the commercial fields. In particular, they closely unite the professionals in the design and creative industries with players in a wide range of sectors. A notable example is "The Belt and Road Initiative" which was advocated by the Chinese government. It is an extensive development strategy that aims to connect the Asian, African and European continents through the promotion of barrier-free trade, financial integration, infrastructural connectivity, inter-governmental cooperation and people-to-people bonds. In light of this, the GDN Symposium 2019 offers a platform for members to interpret the implications of this initiative, explore and exchange views on how to identify, seize and realize the valuable opportunities that are in store for the design and creative industries along the road ahead.