Wei Jianguo: New type of globalization to thrive in post-COVID-19 era
By: Xinhuanet Date: 2020-10-15
A new type of globalization, featuring more inclusiveness and innovation, will finally become an irresistible trend in the post-pandemic era, said an economist with an official think tank.
Although the rising anti-globalization sentiment may continue to be rampant a year or two after COVID-19 wanes, globalization will eventually win out, according to Wei Jianguo, vice chairman of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.
"No country can handle the coronavirus-triggered recession on its own," Wei, also a former vice minister of commerce, wrote in a bylined article.
The new type of globalization will better bridge the development gap among different countries and regions, creating a fairer environment featuring win-win cooperation, said Wei.
Moreover, it will feature new growth drivers such as digital economy, intelligent manufacturing, cloud computing, 5G technology, new materials and smart cities, instead of being confined to trade liberalization and investment facilitation, he said.
Globalization never runs counter to regionalization and can be enriched by it as well, Wei stressed.
Besides deepening globalization, bilateral, multilateral and regional free trade agreements will also be reinforced in the future, he said.
For China, the European Union (EU) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are equally important partners, said Wei.
Despite minor deviations in some issues, China and the EU share similar aspirations in many fields including climate change, WTO reform and green development, he said.
The China-EU agreement on geographical indications (GI) signed in September is one example of China-EU cooperation and will greatly benefit bilateral economic and trade ties, Wei noted.
The economies of ASEAN and China are highly complementary. On one hand, China processes a great number of raw materials from ASEAN countries. On the other hand, China's gigantic market is very attractive to ASEAN, he said.
Customs data showed that ASEAN remained China's largest trading partner in the first three quarters this year, with its trade value surging 7.7 percent year on year, surpassing an increase of 0.7-percent in China's trade with all countries.
Wei suggested efforts to accelerate opening-up, including shortening the negative lists for foreign investment, improving its business environment and strengthening intellectual property rights protection.
"China needs to race against time in all-round opening up in the next five years," he said.
China has great potential in exporting more services to the rest of the world, Wei said, expecting a surplus in the country's service trade in the future.
China's trade of services has seen sound momentum, with cultural services such as Chinese movies, kungfu and traditional Chinese medicine gaining popularity around the world, he said.