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Xi urges G20 members to fight against protectionism

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-09-07 13:58

ST. PETERSBURG -- Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday urged world's leading developed and developing economies to fight against trade protectionism.

Addressing a meeting of the Group of 20 (G20) leaders, Xi said that the global multilateral trade system now faces many challenges amid rising protectionism and stalled Doha talks, which hurts both the world's economic recovery and the interests of all countries.

The Chinese leader urged the G20 major economies, which account for 80 percent of world trade, to have a sense of crisis and assume the responsibility to advance a new round of global trade expansion.

The Chinese president also put forward a three-point proposal on advancing global trade.

First, the G20 economies should reject trade protectionism and safeguard and develop an open world economy.

"Only if you open the window can fresh air flow in freely," he said.

He urged the G20 nations to foster a free, open global trade environment, push for liberalization and facilitation of international trade, and adhere to the principle of resolving trade disputes through dialogue and negotiation.

Some developed countries should ditch unreasonable restrictions on high-tech exports, he added.

Second, the G20 economies should strengthen the global multilateral trade system and push forward the Doha trade talks.

At present, Xi said, the World Trade Organization remains the core and basis of the global multilateral trade system, whose vitality lies in its inclusiveness and non-discrimination.

Regional trade arrangements should adhere to the principle of openness, inclusiveness and transparency to benefit not only the participants themselves, but also show support for the global multilateral trade system and rules, Xi said.

Third, the G20 economies should work to improve the global value chain and establish an integrated world market.

Xi said the G20 countries should have a better understanding of the roles countries play, the value they create and the gains they enjoy in the global value chain.

The Chinese leader urged the G20 economies to strengthen coordination on trade policies and help developing countries on trade capacity building.

China has granted zero-tariff treatment to 95 percent of products from the least developed countries that have diplomatic ties with China, and plans to raise the percentage to 97 percent by 2015, Xi noted.

Xi also expounded China's position on trade.

Noting that Beijing adopts a mutually beneficial, diversified yet balanced trade strategy, Xi said China will both keep exports stable and expand imports, strengthen trade and industrial policy coordination, speed up the opening-up of the services sector, and strive for balanced development of trade to better integrate into the global value chain.

China is ready to work together with other G20 members to promote free trade and safeguard and develop an open world economy, Xi said.

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