|Statement by Ms. WANG Hongbo,Minister Counsellor of the Chinese Mission to the United Nations on Agenda Items 18(a) "International Trade and Development" at the Second Committee of 65th UNGA Session|
The Chinese Delegation wishes to thank the Secretary-General for his report under this agenda item. We align ourselves with the statement made by the distinguished representative of Yemen on behalf of G-77 and China.
The past year saw the world economy slowly recovering and international trade picking up. However, the recovery is uneven; the rally weak; the Doha Round stranded; the exchange rate fluctuations notably widening; trade protectionism unabated; and financing for trade inadequate. In short, there has been no fundamental improvement in the external environment for developing countries' efforts in trade for development. According to the WTO forecast, while world trade in 2010 may register a growth of 9.5% over last year, it is still well below its pre-crisis level. As the profound impact of the financial crisis has not disappeared and the systemic risks of the world economy are not yet eradicated, the external environment for the participation of developing countries in international trade is still fraught with uncertainties. In this context, the international community should be development-oriented, take more resolute measures to strengthen the open and free global trading system and help developing countries, especially the LDCs, in their trade for development efforts.
Trade is an important engine for development and a major source of financing for developing countries. An open and free global trading system is a significant guarantee for the timely attainment of the MDGs, and a steady growth of international trade can effectively help developing countries achieve and sustain economic recovery. In this connection, China suggests that the international community scale up efforts in the following areas:
First, vigorously push forward the Doha Round. The international community needs to give a vigorous push to the Doha Round for substantive progress at an early date so as to inject dynamism into the world economic recovery. The parties concerned should uphold the Doha mandate, maintain the gains already achieved, and work on the basis of the current negotiating text in order to push for a comprehensive and balanced outcome of the Doha Round. The outcome of the negotiations should have a development focus, and effectively reflect the development needs and special concerns of the developing members.
Second, firmly reject trade protectionism. The international community, developed countries in particular, should properly handle trade frictions through dialogue and consultations in line with the principle of "win-win" and common development, reject all forms of trade protectionism through concrete actions, firmly advocate and support free trade, continue to honor and strictly implement their commitment not to introduce new restrictive measures on commodities, investment and services.
Third, continuously improve trade financing. Trade financing remains a bottleneck constraining the African countries and the LDCs in international trade. The international community should further strengthen its support for trade financing, increase financing resources, reduce financing cost, find innovative modes of financing, and especially scale up support for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Fourth, increase support to vulnerable groups. The LDCs, the LLDCs and SIDS are all vulnerable groups in the world economy with their respective share in international trade all below 1%. Moreover, they are all heavily dependent on exports of low value-added commodities. The international community should improve their market access, help them upgrade industrial structure and diversify export products, so as to enhance their ability to benefit from trade preferences.
China is committed to the establishment of an open, fair, just, reasonable and non-discriminatory international trading system. In the last two years of global economic difficulties, China has been true to its words in rejecting all forms of trade protectionism and vigorously expanding imports, thus making significant contributions to the world economic recovery and the growth of international trade. China has now become the world's second largest importer. Over the past 9 years since joining the WTO, China's annual import growth approaches or exceeds $100 billion, and its tariff rate of 9.8% is well below the average rate of developing countries. The Chinese Government pays particular attention to using international trade as a means to help developing countries, including African countries and the LDCs, to achieve trade for development. Between 2000 and 2009, China's imports from African countries increased from $5.6 billion to $43.3 billion with an average annual growth of 25.5%. Despite a notable decline in international trade from 2007 to 2009, China's imports from the LDCs increased from $23.8 billion to $27.4 billion, an average annual growth of 15.5%, making China the largest export market for the LDCs. At the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum last November and the UN MDG Summit in September this year, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao announced zero-tariff treatment for 95% of products imported from relevant LDCs. The Chinese government will continue to strengthen "win-win" economic and trade cooperation with the rest of the world, and work together with the people of all countries to build a harmonious world with common development and universal prosperity.
Thank you, Madam Chair.