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Xi unveils plans for greater opening-up

By An Baijie and Wang Xu | China Daily | Updated: 2019-06-29 00:45
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President Xi Jinping attends the G20 Summit on Friday. [Photo/Xinhua]

Pledge made to G20 to improve business climate

President Xi Jinping pledged further efforts on Friday to open up China's market, expand imports, improve the country's business environment for foreign enterprises and press ahead with various trade agreement negotiations.

Xi made the remark while addressing the summit of the Group of 20 major economies held in Osaka, Japan, through Saturday.

China will soon release the 2019 version of its negative list on access for foreign investment and will further expand openness in agriculture, mining, manufacturing and service industries, he said.

The country will set up six new pilot zones for free trade, add a new area to the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone and speed up the building of Hainan province's free trade port, Xi added.

The president vowed to further cut tariffs independently, make efforts to remove tariff barriers to trade and cut costs for imports. Noting that China will put its new Foreign Investment Law into effect on Jan 1, Xi said that the country will increase protection of intellectual property rights.

G20 countries should uphold a spirit of partnership and handle disputes properly, he said, adding that G20 members are at different stages of development, and they should respect and trust each other, coordinate on the basis of equality and expand their consensus.

Dignitaries pose for a group photo on the first day of the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan, on Friday. [Photo/Xinhua]

Xi said 10 years after the global financial crisis, the world economy reached a crossroads again, and G20 members are obliged to set the direction for the world economy and global governance, boost market confidence and bring people hope during this critical period.

He called on G20 members to embrace development opportunities with greater openness, pursue win-win outcomes through better cooperation and guide economic globalization to develop in the right direction.

Xi called on the group's economies to focus on shared interests and long-term development and commit to lasting peace and prosperity for the world and a satisfying life for people around the world. He also warned the G20 against making an irreversible "historic mistake" due to temporary shortsightedness.

Xi proposed that G20 members uphold reform and innovation and tap the driving force of their economic growth.

The G20 should strive for high-quality growth through such measures as developing the digital economy, boosting interconnectivity and improving social welfare measures, Xi said. The G20 should build a favorable market environment, respect, protect and encourage innovation and advocate international cooperation on innovation, he added.

Xi said that the G20 should promote the multilateral trading system and make necessary reforms to the World Trade Organization to make it better meet the principle of opening markets and promoting development.

Xi called on the G20 to implement the Paris agreement on climate change and improve governance in the areas of energy, the environment and digital development.

The Belt and Road Initiative put forward by China aims to mobilize more resources, boost interconnectivity, release the driving force for the economy and encourage the integration of more countries and regions into economic globalization, he said.

Before the summit, Xi attended a special event on the digital economy. He said the shape of the digital economy is shifting, and "to seize the opportunity and be up to the challenge, we cannot develop behind closed doors".

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