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An article of Zhong Shan, Minister of Commerce Published in People’s Daily “ An Open China and a Win-Win——On the Release of the White Paper “China and the World Trade Organization”


On July 2, 2018, Chinese Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan published a signed article on the People’s Daily under the title An Open China and a Win-Win World – On the Release of the White Paper “China and the World Trade Organization”. Following is the full text of the article.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening-up and the 17th anniversary of its World Trade Organization (WTO) accession. President Xi Jinping stressed that “Reform and opening-up is a great process that has seen China and the rest of the world achieve development and progress together.” Since it joined the WTO, China’s relations with the rest of the world are increasingly close and deepened, a vivid example of China’s reform and opening-up. On the new starting point, China, guided by Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, will steadfastly deepen reform and opening-up, support the improvement of the multilateral trading system, push forward liberalization and facilitation of global trade and investment, build a new type of international relations centered on win-win cooperation, and build a community with a shared future for mankind.

China’s accession to the WTO has delivered a strong boost to its reform and opening-up process.

In 2001, China acceded to the WTO. This was a milestone in China’s integration into economic globalization, marking a new historic stage of reform and opening-up. President Xi once said: “There was a time when China also had doubts about economic globalization, and was not sure whether it should join the World Trade Organization. But we came to the conclusion that integration into the global economy is a historic trend. To grow its economy, China must have the courage to swim in the vast ocean of the global market. If one is always afraid of bracing the storm and exploring the new world, he will sooner or later get drowned in the ocean. Therefore, China took a brave step to embrace the global market. We have had our fair share of choking in the water and encountered whirlpools and choppy waves, but we have learned how to swim in this process. It has proved to be a right strategic choice.” Since its accession to the WTO, China has pressed ahead with reform and development by opening up while taking part in international economic cooperation and competition on a larger scale and at a deeper level, unleashing market dynamics and effectively advancing the reform and opening-up process. We have actively improved the socialist market economy system, extensively reviewed and revised laws and regulations and strengthened the market system to straighten out the relationship between the government and the market so that the market plays a decisive role in resources allocation and the government plays its role better. China has comprehensively honored its WTO commitments, with commitments for goods and services delivered in full in 2010 and 2007 respectively, a continuously lowering threshold for foreign investment, and strengthening protection for intellectual property in a landscape of all-dimensional, multi-tiered and wide-ranging open-up. Efforts are made to boost international competitiveness as all sectors turn pressure into driving force and make opportunities out of challenges to advance industrial restructuring and integrate into global value chains with enhanced competitiveness and innovation to weather the storms of the world economy.

Since its accession to the WTO, China has made important contributions to the world.

Accession to the WTO has boosted China’s development and benefited the rest of the world. President Xi Jinping once noted, “When assessing China’s development, one should not only see what benefits the Chinese people have gained, but also how much hard effort they have put in; not just what achievements China has made, but also what contribution China has made to the world.” Over the past 17 years since it became a member to the WTO, China has opened its door wider and wider, promoted reform and growth through opening-up and contributed greatly and continuously to the world. China has added impetus to the world economy. Acceding to the WTO has markedly widened the room of opening-up in the country. China has comprehensively deepened opening-up and international cooperation, and pressed ahead with the Belt and Road Initiative. Trade and investment in China have soared, fueling growth in the world economy. Between 2001 and 2007, the value of goods and services imports totaled 20 trillion U.S. dollars and 3.7 trillion dollars respectively. China’s foreign direct investment and outward direct investment exceeded 1.1 trillion dollars and 1.6 trillion dollars respectively, creating plenty of trade and investment opportunities as well as jobs.

China’ contribution to the world economy has exceeded 30% since the 18th CPC National Congress, becoming the main stabilizer and power source of the world economy. The Chinese factors have made the global development more tolerant. In the principle of the open, transparent, tolerant and non-discriminatory multilateral trading system, we endeavor to make all people from different countries, ranks and groups benefit from economic globalization. We announced that we will hold the first China International Import Expo, opened Chinese market to the world proactively and built a new platform for other countries to enjoy the development of China. At present, China has become the main trading partners of more than 120 countries and regions and imposed zero tariffs on 97% of the products from 36 least developed countries that established diplomatic relations and exchanged notes with China. We have increased aids for the least developed countries and helped the developing countries to better integrate into the global value chain. The Chinese factors have made the global economic governance system more complete. China sticks to equal consultation and joint cooperation and appeals to an open world economy, supports WTO, G20, APEC, BRICS and regional mechanism for their greater role. We support the expansion of the representation and voice of the developing countries in the international economic and trade affairs. We will put forward more initiatives, plans and propositions and contribute China’s wisdom and power to the global economic governance system towards a more fair and rational direction.

China will lead a road of openness and win-win development in the new era.

The road of opening up is the only way to a country’s prosperity and development. General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out, “the practice has proven that China’s economic development in the past 40 years was achieved under the condition of opening up, and the high-quality development of China’s economy in the future must be achieved under more open conditions.” At present, the world has been experiencing the period of huge development, revolution and adjustment. The recovery of world economy is tough and rugged, economic globalization shows twists, and unilateralism and protectionism emerge. Countries are facing many common challenges. China will adhere to the basic state policy of opening up, actively promote the Belt and Road international cooperation, and unswervingly seek the open, innovative, and inclusive development that benefits everyone. We will constantly promote opening up with higher level, broaden market access and create a more attractive investment environment. We will carry out trade and investment liberalization and facilitation policies with high standard and build free trade ports with Chinese characteristics to pursue opening up on all fronts. We will firmly promote the establishment of an open world economy, stick to the WTO rules and the multilateral trading system, and promote regional economic integration. We will promote the building of the free trade zones, object all kinds of trade protectionism and proactively open our market to the outside world to advance the global economy towards a more open, tolerant, balanced and win-win direction that benefits all people. We will unswervingly promote the construction of a community of shared future. Holding the global governance concept, we will build a framework for major country relations featuring overall stability and balanced development. We will deepen cooperation with our neighbors in accordance with the principle of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit, and inclusiveness. We will uphold justice and the principle of sincerity, real results, affinity, and good faith to strengthen cooperation with other developing countries. We will actively undertake international responsibilities and duties to promote international cooperation and exchanges and seek common development.

Considering the world development trend, the economic globalization is an irreversible trend of the times. The multilateral trading system with the WTO as its core is the backbone of the sound development of global trade. China will be the active participant, firm vindicator and important contributor of the multilateral trading system. We will promote the high-quality development with high standard opening up and share the opportunities and interests in expanding opening up. This is China’s strategic choice based on the development demand, which has also promoted the economic globalization and benefited the people worldwide through actual deeds.

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