Economic globalization is suffering setbacks, protectionism and the multilateral trading regime is under pressure, says the Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Under the impact of all these factors, he warned that the global economy while still on route to recovery faces multiple risks and challenges such as weak growth momentum, sluggish demand volatility in financial market and slow growth in international trade and investment.
President Xi made these remarks on Sunday at the opening of the G20 Summit held in Hangzhou, Zhejiang, in China on the theme; ‘towards an innovative, invigorated, interconnected and inclusive world economy’.
The key topics discussed at the two-day summit include global economic slowdown, raising protectionism, structural reforms to expand global trade and creation of jobs, innovation, inclusive growth and climate finance.
The Hangzhou summit brought together leaders from G20 members, guest countries and international organizations at the invitation of President Xi Jinping.
President Mauricio Macri of Argentina, President Francois Hollande of France, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia, President Vladimir Putin of Russia, President Jacob Zuma of South Africa, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, President Barack Obama of the US, Second Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Muhammad bin Salman Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, among other world leaders attended the event.
According to Xi, the international community has great expectation for the G20 and places high hopes on this Hangzhou summit.
He thus expressed hope that the Hangzhou summit would provide a solution that addresses both the symptoms and repercussions of the global economic problems and achieved strong sustainable balance and inclusive global growth.
Discussions at the forum, he went on, would be centered on strengthening policy coordination, breaking a new path for growth, more effective and efficient global economic and financial governance, robust international trade and investment, inclusive and interconnected development, as well as other issues effecting the world economy.
He disclosed that eight years ago, at the height of the international financial crisis, the G20 acted in a spirit of unity and partnership, pull the world economy back from the precipice and pushed it onto the track of stability and recovery.
“Today, eight years on, the global economy has again reached a critical juncture,” he noted.
China’s Xi thus called on G20 leaders to strengthen microeconomic policy coordination and jointly promote global growth and uphold international financial stability.
He urged G20 members to pursue more comprehensive microeconomic policies in keeping with their own national realities and coordinate their fiscal monetary and structure reform policies in order to expand global demand.
“We should continue to strengthen policy coordination and reduce negative spillovers,” he emphasized.
He affirmed that G20 members should build an open world economy and continue to promote the liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment.
Xi further added that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development should be realized to promote inclusive growth.
African countries have high expectations for the G20 Summit, which is addressing series of burning issues affecting the world, particularly developing countries.
African countries expect the G20 Summit to be open and frank in addressing global challenges.
About G20 Summit
G20 was initiated in 1999 and consists of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Republic of Korea, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union (EU).
Before the outbreak of global financial crisis in 2008, G20 meetings of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors were held to discuss international financial and monetary policies, reform of international financial institutions and world economic development. The first G20 Leaders’ Summit was held in 2008.
In September 2009, the Pittsburgh Summit announced G20 as the premier forum for international economic cooperation, marking an important progress in global economic governance reform. The tenth Summit was held in Antalya, Turkey in November, 2015.
by Mariatou Ngum in Hangzhou, China