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China’s actions reflect its long-term promise to international society

ENRIQUE DUSSEL PETERS | 2022-11-10 | Hits:
Chinese Social Sciences Today

I watched the opening session of the 20th CPC National Congress with interest and have been following the full report. It is logically an evaluation of continuity and the relevance is significant compared with the reports delivered in the 18th and 19th CPC National Congress. 

Substantial growth 

In the past decade, the Chinese government highlights issues against corruption, speculation, and issues with increasing importance of the domestic market (dual circulation), in addition to highlighting China’s increasing global relevance through the concept of a human community with a shared future and against any kind of unilateralism, protectionism and bullying. This shows China’s pursuit of a harmonious international order and its political wisdom in participating in the building of global governance system.

China’s insistence on high-quality development internally and promoting sustained recovery of the global economy is a substantial recognition of a new stage of the domestic and international development. China’s economy will be affected by the world trend of weak growth and even recession, but still it grows substantially higher than other economies (i.e., the US economy will grow in 2022 by around 0.2%, while China’s is higher than 3%). In the first semester China’s economy has integrated very successfully through more exports, in the second it will depend more on its domestic market as a source of growth.

In the last decade China has been able to continue to upgrade technologically. This is extremely important from a domestic perspective but will likely generate competition and frictions with firms from the US, the European Union and Japan, among others. Thus, China has not only been able to continue being the “global manufacturing center,” but also a powerhouse on increasingly sophisticated technologies and innovations.

Inspiration from China’s experience

There are many topics of common interest for China and Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) countries, and in these fields China has very important experience and successes that could be useful for LAC. Our team has been following China’s world-famous anti-poverty efforts in recent years. We consider that the abolition of extreme poverty is a success not only for China but also for humankind. Many LAC countries are also trying to narrow the wealth gap and income gap between different groups, and China’s experience has inspired these countries to fight poverty with confidence. In addition to eradicating poverty, common interest involves issues from improving social justice, the environment and technological upgrading, to the support of the UN-System and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) established for 2030, among others.

LAC’s population witnessed that China has done a great effort to support LAC in terms of many health supplies, like no other country since 2020. 2023 will be a difficult year for LAC, also because of high inflation and low growth. Nevertheless, the bilateral institutions basically work fine and I believe they could overcome the limitations during cooperation.

China and globalization 

Issues like profound impacts of changes in international situations, the rarely seen COVID-19 pandemic, the slowly recovering global economy, and the increasingly frequent environmental crisis are now influencing human society in a greater way. Moreover, complex military situations in Eastern Europe since this year, and the soaring international energy prices affect developing countries and widen their gap with the richest countries. From this perspective, unilateral measures by major economies cannot meet the current and future global challenges. 

Since the creation of the Bretton Woods System in 1944, a series of international political, economic and security institutions led by the US have been established. Today, with the decline of US dollar’s hegemony and the weakening influence of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Trade Organization, emerging powers represented by China are rising. China has been dedicating to a new globalization system based on South-South cooperation, through dozens of important initiatives such as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative.

For five years, our center, academic network and I myself have been working on the topic of “China and globalization process.” According to our research, China has made substantial contributions to the process of globalization since 2013. China can greatly enrich the current process of globalization and improve the living of most people in the “global south.” In particular, the concept of connectivity and infrastructure projects practiced by China differs from what is provided by the US, Japan and the European Union, which can greatly affect the life quality of the people in the South, benefiting 99% of the population, rather than 1% of the population as it happened through the globalization process led by the US since the end of WWII.

By March this year, China had provided more than 2.2 billion vaccines to more than 120 countries and international organizations. China also joined the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) in the early 2021 and applied for accession into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) in September, 2021. All these actions strongly reflect its long-term promise to the international society.

Enrique Dussel Peters is director and professor of economics from the Center for Chinese and Mexican Studies at National Autonomous University of Mexico. This article was edited based on an exclusive interview on Enrique Dussel Peters by CSST.



Edited by BAI LE