Issues concerning WTO and APEC

Mr. Wang Shouwen, the Assistant Minister of Commerce of PRC, who attended WTO Mini-Ministerial Meeting in Davos, Switzerland on January 27 took answers from the media on issues relating to WTO Bali Package agreement, Post-Bali plans and APEC 2014.
Reporter: The Bali package agreement reached at the ninth WTO Ministerial Meeting at the end of 2013 has been highly thought of. What’s your comment on it? How does China make arrangements on the negotiations after Bali meeting?
Wang Shouwen: Ministers at the WTO Mini-Ministerial Meeting in Davos thought highly of the Bali package agreement and regarded the same as an important breakthrough in negotiations over the 20 years since WTO was set up. It has rebuilt the confidence of all sides on multilateral trade system, maintained the credit of WTO and its negotiation function and injected great vigor to push the comprehensive completion of Doha Round negotiations.
China has played a key role in promoting the Bali package agreement and won universal applause. China believed that the Bali package agreement has taken the first step toward the Doha Round negotiation and all the parties should make out more efforts on that basis.
To step up the negotiations after the Bali meeting, China proposed three principles in that meeting:
First, all the parties should carry out the Bali package agreement as soon as possible so as to really benefit the whole industry and further strengthen the credit of WTO.
Second, all the parties should regard the multilateral trade system represented by the WTO as the best choice to solve the global trade issues in dealing with the rest issues of Doha Round. All the members should reiterate its commitment on the multilateral trade system and ensure the consolidation and development of the leading role that WTO plays in global trade.
Thirdly, in terms of the negotiation approaches, whether it’s the big Doha Round package or that similar to Bali meeting, China is open to all of them as long as they insist on development, respect the present negotiation achievements and are conducive to the Doha Round Negotiation.
Reporter: This year is China’s APEC year. What focus China has in economic and trade area? Do you have any concrete plan?
Wang Shouwen: In 2014, China will host APEC meetings once again after 13 years. The APEC Trade Ministers’ Meeting is an important regular meeting held every midyear for APEC for preparation for the APEC Leaders’ Meeting that is to be held at the end of the year. This year, APEC Trade Ministers’ Meeting will be held in Qingdao, Shandong Province on May 17-18. The Ministry of Commerce is making all-out efforts for this meeting.
APEC 2014 themes on “Asia-Pacific Partnership for the Future” and it has three topics: advance regional economic integration; promote economic innovative development, reforms and growth; enhance comprehensive establishment of infrastructure and connectivity. In economic and trade area, China intends to preliminarily promote the work from the four aspects: First, support the multilateral trade system and fight against protectionism; second, advance regional economic integration; thirdly, promote the cooperation between global value chains and supply chains and fourthly, strengthen the economic and technological cooperation. China will also host the APEC Core Members Meeting of WTO in Geneva on January 27 to hear the opinion and advice from all the members.
In terms of supporting the multilateral trade system, China hopes that APEC could play a positive role in making out “post-Bali” work plan and finishing Doha Round negotiations; in terms of advancing regional economic integration, China advocates to promote the free trade zone interaction among APEC regions under APEC framework, set up an information exchange mechanism, strengthen the competence and dialogue and at the same time step up the APEC free trade zone negotiations; in terms of promoting the cooperation between global value chains and supply chains, China hopes that APEC could positively carry out policy dialogue, push to create a policy environment that is conducive to the development of global value chain from a strategic height, and simultaneously push on to break the chokepoint that blocks the connectivity of supply chains in local districts so as to create good business environment; in terms of the economic and technological cooperation, China hopes that APEC could combine their agenda with their actual needs to vigorously promote economic and technological cooperation and the pertinence competence so as to improve the developing members’ ability to realize sustainable and innovative development.
2014 marks the 25th anniversary of APEC. Therefore, APEC 2014 shoulders a special mission to bridge the past and the future, and is of great significance to the future economic and trade cooperation in Asia-Pacific region. China would like to make joint efforts with other sides to promote a fruitful and beneficial APEC for the future in economic and trade areas and make new contributions to build an Asia-Pacific Partnership for the future and promote the common prosperity of Asia-Pacific region.
Source: http://english.mofcom.gov.cn/article/newsrelease/significantnews/201402/20140200483307.shtml

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