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Commentary: It's wise to keep European integration going

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-11-07 19:45

BEIJING -- European integration seems to have run into trouble after the Brexit vote, with some analysts even arguing that the ambitious project has been put on hold.

In 1999, American author Thomas L. Friedman predicted that globalization would be inevitable and that rejection of the trend is doomed. He predicted that only the short-sighted, the stupid and the unprepared would turn against it and that those people would eventually be left behind.

Today, it seems that the force against globalization is more powerful than previously thought.

Resistance has evolved from grassroots shouting slogans outside international conferences to vast middle class frustrated over their squeezed social welfare and faltering fortune.

Then came the rise of demagogue Donald Trump in the United States and the success of Brexit on the other side of the Atlantic, plus the turn to the right in the politics of major European countries.

The situation serves as a wake-up call for self-serving vested interests in the West.

In order to keep globalization and regional integration on track, Western political and financial elites should adjust policies so that the fruits of globalization can be shared by those who were previous overlooked in the process.

Particularly in Europe, which is facing tepid financial recovery, surging security concerns and a refugee crisis, the governments have to prove that they are ready and willing to offer resources to make sure benefits generated by globalization become available to everyone.

China, which has always valued and been committed to a peaceful and stable international environment, will make unremitting efforts to encourage and help facilitate European integration.

Addressing a meeting of the heads of government of China and 16 Central and Eastern European countries, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has said China has all along been a staunch supporter of European integration.

As an old saying goes, he that will have eggs must endure the cackle of the hen. Since European integration and the free flow of commodities are the right direction, it's wise to improve the process for the best, rather than give it up.

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