Work Together for an Open Global Economy That Is Innovative and Inclusive
– Keynote Speech at the Opening Ceremony of the First China International Import Expo
H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China
Shanghai, 5 November 2018
Your Excellencies Heads of State and Government,
Your Royal Highness,
Your Excellencies Heads of International Organizations,
Your Excellencies Heads of Delegations,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
In May 2017, I announced China’s decision to hold the China International Import Expo (CIIE) starting from 2018. Today, after more than one year of preparations and with the strong support from various parties, the first CIIE is officially opened.
At the outset, I wish to express, on behalf of the Chinese government and people and also in my own name, warm welcome, sincere greetings and best wishes to you all.
The CIIE is the world’s first import expo held at the national level, an innovation in the history of global trade. It is an important decision made by China to pursue a new round of high-level opening-up, and is China’s major initiative to still widen market access to the rest of the world. It demonstrates China’s consistent position of supporting the multilateral trading system and promoting free trade. It is a concrete action by China to advance an open world economy and support economic globalization.
Under the theme of “New Era, Shared Future”, the CIIE will help friends from around the world to seize opportunities presented by China’s development in the new era and offer a platform for us to deepen international business cooperation for shared prosperity and progress. Attending the event are 172 countries, regions and international organizations, more than 3,600 companies with a total exhibition area of 300,000 square meters, and more than 400,000 Chinese and foreign buyers who are here to explore business deals.
I wish all friends participating in this Expo a most pleasant and rewarding experience.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The world is going through a new round of major development, transformation and adjustment. The economic and social well-being of countries in the world is increasingly interconnected. The reform of the global governance system and the international order is picking up speed. On the other hand, the world economy is going through profound adjustment, and protectionism and unilateralism are resurging. Economic globalization faces headwinds, and multilateralism and the system of free trade are under threat. Uncertainties and instabilities still abound, and risks and challenges are growing. Living in such a complex world, we need to see the underlining trend, bolster confidence in our future through opening-up and cooperation and work together to cope with risks and challenges.
People with vision in the world would agree that economic globalization, as an irreversible trend of history, has greatly boosted global growth. This is an overarching trend, something that is independent of people’s will. What we mankind can do is to understand, adapt to, and apply the law of history instead of trying to prevent it from happening. The wheel of history, indeed, will keep rolling forward no matter what.
History tells us that openness and cooperation are a major driving force behind dynamic international economic and trade activities. The current situation calls for openness and cooperation to foster steady global recovery. Looking ahead, openness and cooperation will remain essential for continued human progress.
A great vision, simple and pure, requires credible actions. Given the profound shifts in the international economic landscape, the vision for a better world for all calls on countries to act with greater courage and actively champion openness and cooperation in order to secure shared development.
– It is important for all countries to open wider and expand the space for mutually beneficial cooperation. Openness brings progress while seclusion leads to backwardness. Global trade and investment are driven by the need of countries for mutual exchange and complementarity. The history of economic cooperation and international trade testifies to the law that “economies make progress through exchange and inter-connectivity and fall behind because of seclusion and closedness”. Efforts to reduce tariff barriers and open wider will lead to inter-connectivity in economic cooperation and global trade, while the practices of beggaring thy neighbor, isolation and seclusion will only result in trade stagnation and an unhealthy world economy. 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. We need to improve macroeconomic coordination and reduce the negative spillovers of national policies to jointly promote global economic growth. We need to establish a set of global economic and trade rules that is fair, reasonable and transparent, and promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation to make the global economy more open through greater exchanges and integration.
– It is important for all countries to pursue innovative growth and speed up the transformation of growth drivers. Innovation is the premier engine for development. Only with bold innovation and reform can we break the bottlenecks in global growth. The world economy has just emerged from the shadow of the international financial crisis and recovery is still unstable. There is an urgent need for concerted efforts of countries in the world to promote scientific innovation and foster new growth drivers. The well-being of humanity is the biggest driving force for scientific innovation. In our inter-connected global village, to share the fruit of innovation is the common aspiration and natural choice of the world community. We need to seize the opportunities presented by the new round of technological and industrial revolution, strengthen cooperation in frontier sectors such as digital economy, artificial intelligence and nanotechnology, and work together to foster new technologies, new industries, and new forms and models of business.
– It is important for all countries to pursue inclusive development for the benefit of all. As a Chinese saying goes, “All flowers in full blossom make a beautiful spring.” To lead a happy life is the common aspiration of people all over the world. Progress of the human society requires continued efforts of all countries to advance opening-up, cooperation and win-win development, instead of seclusion, confrontation and monopoly. In a world of deepening economic globalization, 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. Countries need to rise above differences and leverage their respective strengths to pursue inclusive growth in the face of common risks and challenges. We need to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, reduce the imbalances in global development, and make economic globalization more open, inclusive, balanced and beneficial for all. This way, people of all countries will be able to share in the benefits of economic globalization and global growth.