By Hu Biliang
As part of the Second Hongqiao International Economic Forum, the parallel session on China’s 70-Year Development and the Building of a Community with a Shared Future for Mankind was held from November 5 to 6. More than 400 participants from think tanks and media of over 100 countries and regions gathered at the occasion and discussed China’s development philosophies and experience over the past seven decades, and exchanged views on the responsibilities and achievements of think tanks and media in promoting a community with a shared future for mankind.
During the session, Professor Hu Biliang, director of the Belt and Road Research Institute at Beijing Normal University, delivered a speech titled “China Promotes Economic Globalization.” Hu noted that China is both a beneficiary and a major contributor to economic globalization.
From his perspective, there have been three major development periods of economic globalization while China missed the prior two. However, the country seized the opportunity of the third one when it started the reform and opening-up in 1978. By proactively following the trend, China not only benefited from economic globalization but also made a special contribution to the process.
The Chinese government has taken four measures based on the actual situation of the country, boosting the growth of Chinese economy as well as economic globalization.
First, it decided to attract investment by establishing special economic zones, a move that directly increased the inflow of global capital, stimulated great movement of global businesses to China and enhanced the production and allocation of products worldwide.
Second, China officially became a WTO member in 2001. After 15 years of negotiations, China had finally begun to integrate with the world economy in trade and investment rules and became a crucial link of global production chains and value chains. As more and more foreign companies chose China as an investment destination, over 400 of Global Fortune 500 companies have launched production in China, making the country the most important production base for the world.
Third, China has launched and promoted the establishment of pilot free trade zones. Since 2013, 18 pilot free trade zones have been set up, alongside efforts to significantly lower tariffs and further open Chinese market so as to create a favorable business environment for global investors.
And fourth, while implementing the Belt and Road Initiative, Chinese companies are encouraged to both “go global” and “bring in,” so that the Chinese economy could integrate into the global value chain more thoroughly and comprehensively.
Hu concluded that while benefiting greatly from economic globalization, China has also made a significant contribution to the process, explaining with four reasons:
First, foreign capital entered China’s market in large numbers, helping China secure the steady capital supply needed during its economic take-off period. Such a momentum has remained robust until now. Second, economic globalization has promoted the rapid growth of China’s foreign trade. Third, on the balance of payments, China’s global income balance has been improving as a result of large inflows of foreign capital and continued surplus in commodity trade. Fourth, the inflow of foreign capital as well as the development of capital directly contributed to the rapid growth of China’s economy.
Copyedited by Wang Yufan, Wang Hai