Chinese devotion to shared sustainable future

December 3, 2023
Updated 2023/12/03 at 2:54 PM
8 Min Read

BEIJING, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) — After some setbacks on the post-COVID 19 recovery path, the Chinese economy has once again shown its resilience and great potential as it regained momentum in the third quarter, expanding by a higher-than-expected 5.2 percent.

Against the backdrop of multiple uncertainties in the global economy, many international institutions have recently upgraded China’s economic growth forecasts, with the figures for 2023 all above 5 percent. Some analysts have predicted an even higher growth for 2024.

These positive signs, which came as a result of a series of forceful and pragmatic policies and measures implemented by the Chinese government to stabilize growth and promote an opening-up, have not only given the world a great boost of confidence, but also once again proved the vicious “China collapse” rhetoric wrong.

Since the beginning of this year, the global economy has been struggling under the impact of geopolitical crises, the spillover effect of the U.S. fiscal and monetary policies, and the so-called “de-risking” of supply chains by some Western countries.

The Chinese economy has also met with many challenges: persistent global inflationary pressure, a deteriorating trade environment, and sluggish international market demand, among others. To overcome the difficulties, China has given priority to stability while pursuing progress, rolling out a comprehensive package of macro-control policies.

Since the second quarter, the United Nations has taken the lead in raising China’s economic growth forecast for this year. Recently after the release of the faster-than-expected figures for the third quarter, more institutions have followed suit.

In its mid-year update of the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2023, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs raised its forecast for China’s economic growth this year to 5.3 percent from 4.8 at the beginning of the year. The International Monetary Fund recently announced that it expects China’s economy to grow by 5.4 percent in 2023, higher than previously expected. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development raised the figure to 5.2 percent from 5 percent. Morgan Stanley raised its forecast to 5.1 percent from 4.8-4.9 percent. Citigroup raised its forecast to 5.3 percent from 5 percent.

These bullish predictions have a solid basis. Figures from the National Statistics Office show that China’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 5.2 percent year-on-year in the first three quarters of this year, one of the fastest among major economies in the world. From January to October, 41,947 new foreign-invested enterprises were established in China, up 32.1 percent year on year. The actual investment in China by Canada, Britain, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands increased by 110.3 percent, 94.6 percent, 90.0 percent, 66.1 percent and 33.0 percent, respectively.

Marcos Pires, director of the Institute of Economics and International Studies at Sao Paulo State University in Brazil, said that China’s economy is not only growing steadily, but also improving in quality. China’s clean energy sector, driven by the rapid development of new energy power generation equipment, battery and electric vehicle industries, “has become the undisputed leader in the world in just a few years.”

The accelerating recovery of the Chinese economy pronounced the failure of the so-called “de-coupling” or “de-risking” tricks by some Western politicians. They might create a temporary headwind down the road, but China’s vigorous economic development and its mutually-beneficial cooperation with the outside world won’t be stopped.

“Since the beginning of this year, the media and politicians of some Western countries, including the United States, have said that China’s economy is about to collapse, that China’s economy is a time bomb, and that Chinese cities have become ghost cities,” said renowned Australian economist Guo Shengxiang. “These statements are pompous and out of touch with common sense.”

China’s economy has its own cycle, and the main direction is “upward,” Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University in the United States, said. In the next 30 years, China will be a leader in digital technology, electric vehicles, renewable energy and many other fields of science and technology, he told Xinhua.

This year marks the 45th anniversary of China’s opening-up policy. In recent years, China has been intensifying moves to promote a high-quality opening-up, setting up more and greater platforms for win-win cooperation for all parties, and earning more trust from the international community.

China applies the highest standards in implementing the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement, and has taken proactive steps to align its economic and trade rules with the high standards of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Digital Economic Partnership Agreement, improved the mechanism for protecting the rights and interests of foreign investment, further reduced the negative list for foreign investment access, and worked hard to break down barriers that restrict the flow of innovation factors.

More and more business people around the world are now assured of China’s steadfast determination and capability to continuously push forward its opening-up and sincerity in contributing to global development from a win-win approach. The “next China” is still China, they say. “Investing in China is investing in the future,” they also say.

“China’s commitment to high-level openness will benefit the entire world,” said Jim Rogers, a world-renowned investor and financial commentator.

Indeed, the institutional advantages of the socialist market economy, the strengths of its enormous market, the supply advantages of a full-fledged industrial system, and the talent advantages of a large number of high-quality workers and entrepreneurs are the basis for China’s economy to forge ahead, and have been increasingly recognized by the outside world.

“China is now the economically indispensable nation in the world,” said Khairy Tourk, professor of Economics at Illinois Institute of Technology.

Although there will be various setbacks and difficulties on the way forward, China has chosen the right development path and direction, and promoting a high-level opening-up will make China one of the most important and successful countries in the world in the 21st century, said Rogers.

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