China issues call to developing world

China has called on developing countries to put their differences aside and work together so that they can benefit from new WTO discussions.

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By  Massoud Derhally Published  February 25, 2003

China has called on developing countries at the Non Aligned Summit in Kula Lumpur to put their differences aside and work together in the hope of turning the new round of multilateral trade talks of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) into a “development round” to benefit them in the process.

Speaking at a special ministerial session at the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Business Forum yesterday, Wang Guangya, China’s vice Foreign Minister, said that developing countries “must close ranks in a concerted effort to address external problems.”

The Foreign Minister said developed countries should honour their commitments towards market access as this would help developing countries increase their revenues to better position themselves to resolve their financial and technological woes and achieve economic development.

If successful, developing countries would be in a better position to protect their interests against what they see as Western dominated trade talks.

“In the new round of multilateral trade talks of the WTO, developing countries should co-operate with each other more closely so that the new round can truly become a development round,” the minister said.

China, said Guangya, would liaise more with developing countries and endeavor for a new and fair international political and economic order to safeguard their common interests.

“We will continue, to the best of our ability, to support fraternal countries in their development and bring forth new ideas and explore new ways of South-South co-operation and common development,” he said.

China, which is now among the world’s largest economies and has a population of nearly 1.3 billion people, had a total of US$2 billion invested abroad in 2001 with a large portion of the money channeled into developing countries.

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