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Geneva-based intl organizations upbeat about China's economic prospect

Xinhua | Updated: 2023-12-05 16:40
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This aerial photo taken on Sept 12, 2023 shows a view of the container terminal of Haikou Port in Haikou, South China's Hainan province. [Photo/Xinhua]

GENEVA - Heads of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the International Trade Center (ITC) and other international organizations headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, have expressed their optimism about China's economic fundamentals and China's economic development trajectory in recent interviews with Xinhua.

A recovering economy

UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan said that China's contribution to global economic growth is higher than those of other major economies.

China's economic growth has been built on advantages in industrial production, infrastructure, logistics and technology, which means that China plays an important role in global trade and value chains, and with the successful completion of structural adjustments in the economy, industries and trade, the Chinese economy will continue to grow in the future, Grynspan said.

Optimistic about China's economic prospects, Pamela Coke-Hamilton, executive director of the ITC, said that China has a huge consumer market of 1.4 billion people, and from the economic data released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China in the first three quarters of 2023, China's consumer demand has begun to pick up, which will stimulate the sustained growth of economy and trade.

China's research and development and investment in new technologies and industries continue, and economic transformation will bring sustained growth, and meanwhile, China continues to open up and embrace economic globalization, she said.

WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said that China's opening-up, new development pattern and domestic consumption will help promote sustained economic recovery.

Transformation and upgrade

China's leading position in many cutting-edge areas such as battery technology, artificial intelligence and electric vehicles, as well as the ongoing transformation and upgrade of the Chinese economy all point to continued growth in the future, Grynspan said, viewing the Chinese government's efforts to boost domestic demand as crucial to promoting accelerated economic growth.

The global trade structure is currently being shaped, with trade in goods declining and trade in services, especially those related to the digital economy, growing, she said.

China's economy is in the process of transforming itself into one driven by consumer demand, led by the service sector and enabled by technology, Grynspan said, adding that at the same time, China will remain the world's leading exporter of goods and services.

China's industrial structure has changed significantly, with explosive growth registered in the industry of electric vehicles, said Coke-Hamilton.

China ranks among the top exporters of electric vehicles in the world, generating new opportunities for China and global economic development, Coke-Hamilton said, voicing hope that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries can participate in this process and share the benefits.

Boosting global trade growth

Earlier in November, Grynspan visited China and attended the sixth China International Import Expo (CIIE). She believed that the expo has created valuable opportunities for foreign enterprises, particularly SMEs from developing countries, to enter the Chinese market.

SMEs account for 90 percent of the global business landscape, provide 60-70 percent of jobs and produce 50 percent of the world's GDP, she said, referring to it as vital for SMEs to be able to benefit from China's growth, trade and market dynamics.

Coke-Hamilton also attended the sixth CIIE. She believed that the CIIE has played a great role in helping enterprises from the least developed countries enter the Chinese market, deeming the expo as an "important opportunity" for the world, especially developing countries.

Since 2008, China has become the main export destination for the least developed countries, receiving more than a quarter of their exports, which is "quite a large proportion," she said.

In Coke-Hamilton's view, one of the most important ways to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals is to promote sustained export growth in the least developed countries, which is conducive to their economic and social development. "The CIIE is actually part of the solution," she said.

Okonjo-Iweala said that as the world's second-largest economy, China plays a pivotal role in international trade.

China's good trade performance, she said, will help promote the economic and trade development of other countries and regions, especially developing economies.

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