|Statement by Ambassador Wang Min, Deputy Permanent Representative of the People's Republic of China to the UN at the High Level Thematic Debate on the State of the World Economy and Finance in 2012|
(Photo by Xinhua News Agency/Lin Qiong)
The UN High Level Conference on the “World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development” held in 2009 put forward a series of recommendations on ways to respond to the crisis and mitigate its negative impact on the developing countries. We are pleased to see that in the three years since then, the international community has achieved positive results in many aspects by enhancing cooperation to actively implement the Outcome Document of the Conference and taking measures to minimize the impact of the financial crisis on the developing countries.
Nevertheless, we are fully aware of the fact that the deep-going effects of the international financial crisis have not dissipated, the global economic recovery is anemic and the situation facing us is still daunting and complex. Currently, the growth rate of the developed countries has decelerated, the European debt crisis has defied attempts at a solution, and many developing countries are enduring the dual pressures of inflation and a weakening external demand. The international financial market continues to be volatile; the growth of international trade has slumped markedly; prices of bulk commodities fluctuate wildly; and there has been a visible increase of various forms of protectionism. As the major victims of the financial crisis, the developing countries have yet to recover from the shock of this “development crisis” and are thus facing an uphill battle in their endeavor to realize the MDGs on time. As the most universal, representative and authoritative inter-governmental organization in the world, the United Nations is called to play an important role in tackling the economic and financial crisis and promoting international cooperation for development. The international community should continue to make united efforts to build up a global partnership for development and work towards world economic growth and financial stability. In this connection, I’d like to make a few proposals:
First, our efforts should be clearly oriented towards effectively helping the developing countries achieve development. The biggest bottleneck in the world economic development is the inability of the developing countries to realize full development. Between the developed and the developing countries, there has long existed an imbalance in terms of access to resources, inequitable wealth distribution and uneven opportunities for development. This has produced the vicious circle of “the more undeveloped, the more backward; and the more backward, the harder to develop”, which ultimately has become a constraint on sustained stable development of the world economy. Speeding up the economic and social development of the developing countries is therefore a key to world economic recovery and the only path towards prosperity of the whole world. The international community should make greater efforts to promote the development of the developing countries, establish a fair and effective global development system, reinforce development institutions and increase development resources with a view to realizing all the MDGs.
Secondly, our work should be focused on actively improving global economic governance. Global economic governance should reflect the changes in the world economic landscape in order to facilitate the enhanced coordination and cooperation among countries for effective response to challenges. We should continue to push the international monetary and financial system towards greater fairness, equity, inclusiveness and orderliness. The representation and voice of the developing countries should be increased. Financial regulation should be more targeted and effective and regulation of credit rating institutions and trans-boundary capital flow should be enhanced; the liquidity of major reserve currencies should be kept reasonably stable; the international monetary system should be further improved and efforts should be made to build a more equitable and rational international economic order. The United Nations, especially the General Assembly, should use its advantages in representation, legitimacy and authority to play a bigger role in global economic governance and promote effective mutual complementation with institutions outside the UN system and with such multilateral mechanisms as the G20.
Thirdly, vigorous measures are needed to safeguard the multilateral trade system. Economic globalization is conducive to rational international division of labor and optimal distribution of product elements; and trade and investment liberalization are critical to economic recovery. We should continue to press ahead with economic globalization; effectively honor commitments that have been made; firmly oppose and jointly resist protectionism in various forms; open markets to developing countries, the LDCs in particular; reduce or cancel tariffs; and work towards a balanced multilateral trade system that benefits all countries and brings win-win results for all. We should show political will and push for an early achievement by the Doha Round of a comprehensive and balanced outcome so as to obtain the goal of the development round.
Fourthly, each country should start from oneself and work actively to transform the mode of economic development. Economic recovery and sustained development are predicated on sustainable economic growth. The developed countries should implement responsible macro-economic policies and properly address the sovereign debt issue and financial risks; and the developing countries should actively expand domestic demand and promote the transformation of economic growth to one that is driven by a combination of consumption, investment and export. Economic and social development should go hand in hand with environmental protection so as to achieve a development that is sustainable resource-conserving and environment-friendly. It is also important to ensure the sustainability of financial, monetary, trade and industrial policies.
Since the outbreak of the international financial crisis, China has taken an active and responsible approach in its response and has contributed to regional and world economic recovery. In face of the complex and evolving world economic situation, my government has taken targeted measures to strengthen and improve macro-economic control, and worked hard to stabilize prices, restructure our economy, ensure people’s livelihood and promote social harmony. An orderly shift in the driving force of our economic growth is taking place, from policy stimulus to self impetus, and our national economy is going in the direction as planned in our macro-economic control endeavor. With this we have achieved a good beginning in the implementation of our Twelfth Five Year Plan.
At the same time, as a developing country with the world’s largest population, China’s per capita GDP is still very low and there are still over 100 million Chinese people living under the UN poverty line. China faces multiple constraints in terms of resources and environment; there are acute problems of unevenness, lack of coordination and unsustainability in our development; and some structural problems have come to a head. These problems need to be addressed one step at a time. We will continue to work in the following areas:
First, stabilize growth and adjust the structure. We will build a long term mechanism for expanding domestic demand, speed up economic restructuring and develop new strategic industries. We’ll also speed up the development of the service industry; promote the integrated development of urban and rural areas; and facilitate the virtuous interaction among different regions of the country and promote their coordinated development. We have set the goal of our GDP growth for this year at 7.5%.
Secondly, control prices and improve people’s livelihood. With the stabilization of the overall level of prices as the primary task of our macro-economic control, we will continue to accord priority attention to people’s livelihood, promote employment, and step up efforts to improve our social security system and undertake various social development projects, with a view to enabling all the people to share the benefit of development and advancing social equity and justice.
Thirdly, engage in reform and enhance harmony. Reform and opening up are the powerful engine for China’s economic and social development. Right now, our reform has entered an important but difficult stage. We will deepen reform in areas of taxation, finance, prices, income distribution and enterprises with a view to achieving new breakthroughs in priority areas and critical links; and promote across the board innovation in system, technology and management with the emphasis on enhancing the internal impetus and vitality of our development.
China is willing to continue to work together with other members of the international community to make greater contributions to the realization of the comprehensive and sustainable development of the world economy.
Thank you, Mr. Co-chairs.