Opinion / Op-Ed Contributors

G20 has bigger role in global growth

By Zhu Junqing (China Daily) Updated: 2016-08-08 07:50

G20 has bigger role in global growth

File photo taken on May 24, 2016 shows an aerial view of expressways linking Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport at night in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang province. Hangzhou is the host city for the 2016 G20 summit on Sept 4 and Sept 5. With one month to go, Hangzhou looks forward to G20. [Photo/Xinhua]

Against the backdrop of the weak global economic recovery and political uncertainties worldwide, people are hoping the Group of 20, accounting for up to 85 percent of the world economy, will show leadership in global governance and seek to promote economic growth.

In July, the International Monetary Fund revised down its forecast for global growth in 2016 and 2017, due to the uncertainty surrounding Britain's proposed exit from the European Union. The IMF stated that it expects the global economy to grow 3.1 percent in 2016 and 3.4 percent in 2017, both 0.1 percentage points lower than its forecasts in April.

Meanwhile, a retreat from globalization is emerging as a danger to the world economy, and a tide of populism is rising.

It is common sense that economic development is a precondition for security, and that economic stagnation would bring unexpected risks and dangers. Therefore, high hopes are being pinned on some agreement at the G20 summit on united efforts to promote economic development.

The G20 summit to be held in Hangzhou, East China, in September offers a platform for the heads of state and government as well as central bankers of the 20 largest economies, to exchange views on macroeconomic policy. The members have long recognized the need to shift their strength to economic growth to enhance the base of world security instead of falling into "geopolitical trap."

The potential and driving force of the global economic development are innovation, reform and structural adjustment.

The theme of this year's summit-"Toward an Innovative, Invigorated, Interconnected and Inclusive World Economy"-reflects the importance of encouraging innovation for sustainable economic growth and overcoming structural and institutional obstacles.

Advancing with the times, the G20's agenda has been gradually shifting from dealing with the aftermath of the global financial crisis to long-term governance in recent years, with trade and investment emerging as another critical aspect along with financial and fiscal coordination.

As economies have still not fully recovered from the financial crisis, many of them have turned against free trade. It is high time for the G20 economies to say no to protectionism.

From China's perspective, the G20 should advocate an open global economy, maintain the multilateral trading system, and further vitalize international trade and investment to revive the two engines so they serve both industrialized and developing countries.

Meanwhile, the G20 needs to give developing countries more say in the global economy so as to narrow the gap between them and advanced nations for the benefit of all.

The author is a writer with Xinhua News Agency.

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