Understanding China Conference opens with focus on globalization, multilateralism

2019-10-27 02:05:47 GMT2019-10-27 10:05:47(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

GUANGZHOU, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) -- The fourth Understanding China Conference opened Saturday in Guangzhou, bringing in-depth discussions around the theme of "New Globalization and China's New Round of Reform and Opening-Up."

About 600 politicians, strategists, scholars, entrepreneurs from 17 countries and regions, as well as representatives of international organizations, participated in the two-day event, according to the organizing committee.

Participants are expected to attend in-depth discussions, seminars and forums with topics including the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, global governance and China's economic development.

The international trading system that has made possible the extension and expansion of the opportunities of globalization is nowadays "under severe stress," said Ernesto Zedillo, former president of Mexico, at the opening ceremony.

"We are moving rapidly, from a rules-based system into a system based on the force of power. And that, in other words, means the law of the jungle, which is detrimental for globalization," he said.

He also called for joint efforts to protect global multilateralism, saying that "we hope all countries can take the initiative to protect and reinforce the multilateral trading system."

"China's success, especially economically, would not have been possible without the accompanying process of globalization, which accelerated in the last half-century," said Li Yong, director-general of the UN Industrial Development Organization.

"Globalization and China's own policies have been highly complementary and mutually beneficial. We need to recognize this to fully understand China's commitment to globalization and the new round of the reform and opening up today," he said.

Li also cautioned against protectionist sentiments, adding that "economies that close their borders risk cutting themselves off from job opportunities and investment from innovation."

Launched in 2013, the Understanding China Conference has served as a platform for the world to understand China's development strategies.

Guangzhou, capital of south China's economic powerhouse Guangdong Province, has been at the frontier of China's reform and opening-up.

The GDP of Guangzhou gained 6.9 percent in the first nine months of this year to reach more than 1.78 trillion yuan (252 billion U.S. dollars), according to the city's government.

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