Dear Editor,

  The Second China International Import Expo will be held in Shanghai from November 5 to 10. The CIIE is the world’s first import expo held at the national level, and an innovation in the history of global trade. By holding the import fair, China is building a platform that connects China’s demand with the world supply. It not only satisfies China’s domestic consumption and its upgrade, but also provides huge business opportunities for global enterprises. Given the intensified trade protectionism and increased downside risk for the world economy, the Chinese government is actively promoting high-level opening-up, which demonstrates China’s consistent position of supporting free trade and economic globalization.

  The number of participants as well as the exhibition area of the second CIIE will be larger than that of the first expo. Covering an area of 30,000 square metres, the country exhibitions will host 64 nations and three international organizations. Among them are 15 guest countries of honor, including some EU member states, France, Italy, Greece and Czech Republic. The uniquely designed pavilions will showcase each country's development achievements, business environment and special industries. While the business exhibitions cover more than 300,000m2 and are divided into 7 areas, and have attracted more than 3,000 companies from over 150 countries and regions.

  China has achieved tremendous development since the reform and opening-up. It has greatly improved people’s living standards and has formed the world’s largest middle-income group. Consequently, the demand for high-quality imported goods has been increasing. Consumption has contributed more than 70 per cent of China’s economic growth and is now the primary engine of domestic economic development. The “global market” of China has drawn the attention of the whole world.

  While stimulating the high-quality development of its own economy, China has taken a series of measures to promote a higher level of opening-up, including expanding market access, enhancing international cooperation in intellectual property protection, increasing the import of goods and services, and strengthening macro policy coordination with other major economies, etc. According to the Doing Business 2020 study by the World Bank, China ranks 31st globally on business environment and joined the ranks of the world’s top 10 most improved economies for ease of doing business for the second year. The rankings of a number of indicators, such as contract enforcement are among the highest in the world.

  Foreign investment is thriving with the promotion of quality and expansion of capacity of the Chinese market, as well as the continuous improvement of business environment in China. The World Investment Report 2019 by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development reveals that the foreign direct investment (FDI) in China increased by 4 per cent in 2018 to an all-time high of $139 billion, accounting 10 per cent of world total. China is now the second largest FDI inflow host economy and has become an appealing destination for foreign investment.

  China is also the world's second largest source of outward FDI. In 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed to jointly build the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, namely the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). In the past 6 years, more than 160 countries and international organizations have signed agreements on Belt and Road cooperation with China. A large number of cooperation projects have been launched, benefiting economic development of participating countries.

  The BRI highlights the Silk Road spirit of peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit, and is guided by the principle of consultation, contribution and shared benefits. It follows market rules and suits to national conditions of relevant countries. That’s why the BRI has received greater recognition from more and more country leaders and local people, and it has become the most welcomed global public product.

  China and the Netherlands are important trading partners, with bilateral trade volume over 85 billion US dollars in 2018. The Netherlands is where the land and maritime Silk Roads meet, and we two countries have achieved fruitful results in pragmatic cooperation under the Belt and Road framework. Besides, 19 countries from Latin America and Caribbean region have signed documents on Belt and Road cooperation with China. The Dutch Caribbean region has its unique advantages, China would like to strengthen the people-to-people exchange, promote pragmatic cooperation between two sides, and achieve common development.

  China will open its door wider to the world, and will lend new impetus to the open world economy.

 

Xue Shan

Acting Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Willemstad