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Last Updated : Nov 05, 2018 09:48 PM IST | Source: PTI

Xi Jinping urges international community to oppose protectionism

"In a world of deepening economic globalisation, practices of the law of the jungle and winner-takes-all only represent a dead end. Inclusive growth for all is surely the right way forward," Xi said.

Amid a trade war with the US, President Xi Jinping on November 5 urged the international community to oppose protectionism as he vowed to step-up China's imports of goods and services to over $40 trillion in the next 15 years.

Inaugurating the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai in which India along with 172 other countries, regions and international organisations took part, Xi, in a thinly veiled attack on President Donald Trump, called for staunch opposition to protectionism and unilateralism.

Leaders of 18 countries, including Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, are taking part in the mega event which is aimed at showcasing China's import potential.

"In a world of deepening economic globalisation, practices of the law of the jungle and winner-takes-all only represent a dead end. Inclusive growth for all is surely the right way forward," Xi said.

"Countries need to pursue an open policy, explicitly oppose protectionism and unilateralism, and strive to enhance the level of opening-up at both multilateral and bilateral levels, so that we could make our economies interconnected and build an open world economy," he said.

Trump has launched a trade war with China in June slapping additional tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports. Trump has been insisting that China should cut down $375 billion trade deficit by providing more access to the American goods by ensuring IPR (Intellectual property rights) protection.

India too has been pressuring China to take measures to bring down over $51 billion annual trade deficit, which was one of the main focus areas in the first informal meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi at Wuhan Summit in April.

Xi also said China which is the largest exporter of goods piling up huge trade deficits with most of the countries will import more.

China's imported goods and services are estimated to exceed $30 trillion and $10 trillion, respectively, in the next 15 years, Xi said.

All major countries in the world including US and India, have massive trade deficits with China which is the leading exporter of the world.

Indian pavilion at the expo showcased country's strong areas like Food and Agro Products, Pharmaceuticals, IT and IT Enabled Services (ITES), Tourism and Services Sectors to gain market access to China, an Indian Embassy press release said.

Xi said measures announced in April to relax market access to Chinese market have so far been implemented. China has further simplified negative list of foreign investments, reduced investment limits and lifted the level of free investment.

China is taking solid steps to expand financial opening-up, continue to advance opening-up in the service sector, deepen opening-up in agriculture, mining, manufacturing, and accelerate the opening-up process of sectors including telecommunications, education, medical treatment and culture, he said.

He also sought to allay concerns about the continued slowdown of Chinese economy, saying that there is every reason to be fully confident about it.

At present, China's economy remains generally stable and is making good progress, Xi said, citing data including the GDP growth of 6.7 percent in the first three quarters of 2018.

"China's economy is truly performing well within the reasonable range, giving us a solid foundation for delivering the development goals for the whole year," Xi said.

Compared with other major economies, China still ranks among the world's top in terms of GDP growth, he asserted.

"All in all, the favourable conditions are in place for the long-term, healthy and steady growth of the Chinese economy," he said.

More than 3,000 companies participated in the enterprise and business exhibitions at the expo, with a total a total exhibition area of 300,000 square metres.

Twelve countries - Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Germany, Hungary, Indonesia, Mexico, Pakistan, Russia, South Africa, Vietnam and the UK - will be the "Guest of Honour" at the mega business event.
First Published on Nov 5, 2018 09:34 pm
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