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Joint statement illustrates China's willingness to expand trade in services

By Liu Zhihua | | Updated: 2021-12-04 11:04
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A visitor tries her hand on a driving simulator using digital technologies at the recent 2021 CIFTIS in Beijing. [Photo/Xinhua]

The Joint Statement Initiative on Services Domestic Regulation announced at the World Trade Organization on Thursday its first negotiated agreement on services. China's Ministry of Commerce said in an online statement on Friday night that the organization should continue to uphold principles of openness, tolerance, and non-discrimination to attract more members and make the negotiation results become "multilateralized" early.

The statement came after 67 WTO members, including both developed and developing countries such as the United States and China, agreed on the landmark deal for services trade to cut red tape around licensing and qualifications.

Ratification procedures by the signatory members are expected to be finished within 12 months after the announcement and members will submit specific commitments for confirmation.

The negotiated rules can help reduce barriers to trade in services while also reducing business costs and uncertainties.

The successful completion of the negotiations is an important milestone for the WTO's restoration of negotiation function, as well as an important achievement in the development and innovations of international regulatory rules for services trade, which will help further liberalize and facilitate global services trade, according to the statement.

Continuing to promote high-level opening-up, while also improving domestic regulatory transparency and simplifying administrative procedures to improve business environment and unleash market vitality, China hopes to work with all parties so that the WTO will make more achievements, according to the statement.

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