Xi Jinping Attends the 14th G20 Summit and Delivers an Important Speech

On June 28, 2019 local time, the 14th G20 Summit was held in Osaka, Japan. President Xi Jinping delivered an important speech titled Working Together to Build a High-Quality World Economy, stressing that the G20 need to persist in reform and innovation to find more impetus for growth; progress with the times and improve global governance; rise up to challenges and break bottlenecks in development and uphold our partnership and resolve differences properly. Xi Jinping announced that China will open up the Chinese market wider to deliver high-quality development and to tirelessly pursue a brighter future of the global economy.

Prior to the Summit, Xi Jinping and other leaders attending the Summit arrived successively and were greeted by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan.

The Summit began at noon local time. Shinzo Abe chaired the Summit and invited Xi Jinping to deliver an introductory speech.

Xi Jinping pointed out that ten years after the 2008 international financial crisis, the global economy has again reached a crossroads. The G20 is duty bound to re-calibrate the direction of the world economy and global governance at this critical juncture, work together to boost market confidence, and bring hope to our people. We must respect the objective laws of the economy, and leverage the role of the market to raise productivity. We must tap into the prevailing trend of development. We must open up further to embrace opportunities of development and seek win-win outcomes through closer cooperation. We must work together to shape and steer economic globalization in the right direction. We must keep in mind our shared future. By expanding common interests and taking a long-term view, we can realize enduring peace and prosperity in the world and deliver a better life to all our people.

Xi Jinping put forward the following suggestions.

First, we need to persist in reform and innovation to find more impetus for growth. We must find the best way to advance structural reform to strive for high-quality development through promoting the digital economy, enhancing connectivity and improving social security. We need to foster an enabling market environment where innovation is respected, protected and encouraged. We must champion international collaboration on innovation.

Second, we need to progress with the times and improve global governance. We must strengthen the multilateral trading system and pursue WTO reform as necessary to make it better able to deliver its mandate of enhancing market openness and boosting development. We must ensure sufficient resources for the financial safety net and see to it that the representativeness of the international financial architecture makes more sense. It is also very important for the G20 to implement the Paris Agreement and improve energy, environmental and digital governance.

Third, we need to rise up to challenges and break bottlenecks in development. The Belt and Road Initiative is designed to mobilize more resources, strengthen connectivity links, leverage potential growth drivers, and connect the markets with a view to integrating more countries and regions into economic globalization and achieving shared prosperity through mutually beneficial cooperation. It is important that the G20 continue to prioritize development in macroeconomic policy coordination, and scale up input in development.

Fourth, we need to uphold our partnership and resolve differences properly. Given the different development stages of G20 members, the important thing is to always promote our partnership and treat each other with respect and trust, and in that spirit, engage in consultation as equals, manage differences while seeking common ground, and build greater consensus.

Xi Jinping stressed that the Chinese economy has continued its stable and sound performance. China will further unveil major measures aimed at breaking new ground in opening-up and delivering high-quality development.

First, more will be done to open up the Chinese market wider. We will release the 2019 edition of the negative list on foreign investment. The focus will be on greater openness in the agriculture, mining, manufacturing and services sectors. We will set up six new pilot free trade zones and open a new section of the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone, and will speed up exploration of building a free trade port in Hainan province.

Second, greater initiative will be demonstrated in expanding imports. We will further bring down China's overall tariff level, strive to remove non-tariff trade barriers, and slash institutional costs of imports. We will ensure the success of the Second China International Import Expo.

Third, more steps will be taken to improve the business environment. In the new legal framework for foreign investment that is to take effect on 1 January next year, we will introduce a punitive compensation mechanism for intellectual property infringement cases and make the relevant civil and criminal laws more stringent to deliver better IP protection.

Fourth, equal treatment will be extended to all foreign investment. We will lift all foreign investment restrictions beyond the negative list, and provide equal treatment to all types of businesses registered in China in the post-establishment phase. A complaint mechanism will be set up for foreign companies to air their grievances.

Fifth, greater efforts will be made to advance trade talks. We will push for an early conclusion of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and for faster progress in the negotiations on a China-EU investment agreement and a China-Japan-ROK free trade agreement.

Xi Jinping stressed that China has full confidence in following its path and running its own affairs well. At the same time, China will work in the spirit of peaceful co-existence and win-win cooperation with all other countries to build a community with a shared future for mankind and to tirelessly pursue a brighter future of the global economy.

Leaders attending the Summit discussed various topics including world economic situation, trade, investment, innovation and digital economy. As the world economy is facing increasing risks and uncertainties, many leaders expressed their worries over serious hazards brought by unilateralism and protectionism, and agreed that all sides should strengthen communication and dialogue, maintain unity and cooperation, boost macro-policy coordination, advance structural reform, deepen cooperation in such fields as innovation, climate change, energy, education and environment, protect the multilateral trade system, and conduct necessary reforms of the WTO. Many leaders also said at the Summit that the G20 should jointly oppose protectionism, safeguard the space for development of emerging market economies and developing countries, push for the reform of global governance system, and realize strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive global growth and high-quality development for all countries, so as to benefit peoples of all countries.

Before the Summit, Xi Jinping also attended a special meeting on digital economy and was the first to address the meeting at the invitation of Shinzo Abe. Xi Jinping pointed out that digital economy develops rapidly and is profoundly reshaping the world economy. We should nurture a fair, just and non-discriminatory market environment, rather than developing behind closed doors and artificially interfering in the market. We should work together to improve data governance rules and make sure of safe and orderly use of data. We need to facilitate the integrated development of digital economy and real economy, strengthen digital infrastructure construction and promote connectivity. The inclusiveness of digital economy should be expanded to bridge the digital gap. As a country strong in digital economy, China is willing to actively participate in international cooperation and maintain an open market to achieve win-win outcomes.

Liu He, Yang Jiechi, Wang Yi and others attended the relevant events.

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