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What will China's G20 presidency bring to the world?

中国日报网 2016-08-26 10:50





The G20 summit to be held in the Chinese city of Hangzhou in early September is unlike any previous one: it will be hosted by the largest developing country in the world. But a key question remains: can China succeed in shaking the world's 20 biggest economies out of their torpor?

China has high hopes for chairing a successful G20 summit, the country's biggest diplomatic event of the year. Plenty is already on the table, including a Beijing-led push to upgrade the G20 from a crisis response mechanism to a long-term governance platform.

The economic weight and growing agility of China in managing international affairs, experts say, would prove advantageous in getting things done at the forum, particularly in bringing major industrialized economies as well as emerging markets together to tackle the root causes of faltering global growth.

Long-term governance

The G20 mechanism, as a primary platform for international economic cooperation, has long focused on coordinating monetary and fiscal policies among the world's top developed and developing nations in response to global financial crises.

But after eight years of slow recovery from the 2008 financial crisis, an urgency can be felt across G20 members for collective action on more fundamental aspects of the global economy.

A highlight of the upcoming summit will be developing a G20 blueprint for innovative growth, which includes a concrete action plan for building a new industrial revolution and the digital economy.

"It is the first G20 summit with a focus on the long-term impetus of global growth," said Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a briefing late May.

"Fiscal and monetary policies can only serve as countercyclical tools that help smooth out volatility in the short term," said Professor Zhu Jiejin of Fudan University. "It's just like medicine. It may cure an illness, but does not strengthen the health of an economy."

Zhu said the consensus on innovation had been a hard-won achievement under the Chinese presidency, especially given the severe market volatility in the first quarter of 2016.

"It is not easy for China to stay focused on a long-term agenda when some are calling for short-term stimulus packages," Zhu said.

Swiss Finance Minister Ueli Maurer underlined China's emphasis on fostering innovation and other structural reforms, which, he said, were important to raise productivity and ensure the quality and sustainability of growth.

"In this respect, the G20 Blueprint on Innovative Growth represents an ambitious agenda toward a new paradigm for growth based on knowledge and on new and cleaner technologies," he told Xinhua. "Many countries have, since the global financial crisis of 2008/09, relied too heavily on monetary and fiscal easing,"

Another eye-catching item on the agenda is going to be outlining steps to implement the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the first time development is being given priority in a global macro-policy framework.

Huang Wei, a researcher with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that "developed countries cannot thrive alone in this increasingly interconnected world. Developed and developing countries need to pool their resources to reverse sagging global growth."

Huang noted the systematic nature of implementing the United Nations development goals, which incorporate social and environmental dimensions as well as growth. "Only with a holistic approach can we solve fundamental problems in the global economy," she told Xinhua. "The G20 used to deal with only specific problems."

According to Chen Fengying, a researcher with the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, the G20 has expanded its main policy goal for strong, sustainable and balanced growth that was laid down at the Pittsburgh summit in 2009. "It is not easy for China to host a fruitful summit when there is no apparent crisis," she said. "But China has made an unprecedented contribution to the G20 by charting out a new future."
中国现代国际关系研究院的研究员陈凤英表示,为了实现2009年匹兹堡峰会上提出的 “强劲、可持续和平衡增长”目标 ,G20已进一步增加了其主要政策目标。“目前,经济危机的迹象不明显,中国要保证这次的G20峰会取得丰富成果并非易事”,陈凤英说道,“但中国为G20绘就了发展新蓝图,作出了前所未有的贡献。”

Moreover, amid sluggish trade and weak investment, the G20 under China's presidency this year opened up a new and more substantive avenue for stimulating growth: a trade ministers meeting to promote international trade and investment.

"We cracked some real issues, because China took the initiative of setting up the trade and investment working group and put in lots of work, which has been very productive," said Rita Teaotia, commerce secretary of the Indian Department of Commerce.

"From the Hangzhou summit onward," said Chen, "there will be two wheels driving the G20, with the traditional finance ministers and central bank governors meeting, and the new mechanism of trade ministers' meeting."

This could be one of the biggest breakthroughs at this year's summit. Many of the long-term structural problems in the global economy have to do with trade and investment, she said.


Shaping the agenda

At this year's G20 summit, China will also be playing a more prominent role in international affairs.

"This will be the first time that China hosts a global economic governance summit, unlike chairing regional meetings such as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation," said Chen. "It is a good opportunity for China to exercise its power in global economics."

She explained that because the G20 is an international forum with no secretariat or enforcing agencies, the outcome of the summit is to a large extent determined by the will of the host country.

"As a big country, China has the influence to push for specific goals, especially when they coincide with the interests of other countries," she said, praising China's concrete action plans in the context of vaguer pledges of past years.

Zhu stressed that China, as the biggest developing country, has the responsibility to promote more balanced governance of the global economy.

"The birth of the G20 has broken the myth of the G7 and allows for the exploration into diverse paths of growth," he said.

According to statistics from the International Monetary Fund, emerging and developing economies are home to 85 percent of the world's population, accounting for almost 60 percent of global GDP and contributing to more than 80 percent of global growth since the 2008 financial crisis. China alone has contributed 35 percent to global growth in the past five years.

The view of China's growing role in global economic governance is widely shared.

"There is probably some means for building new institutions given the rise of Asia and rise of China," said Tim Harcourt of the University of New South Wales in Australia. "I think in some ways the G20 can play that role."

China is now in a position to assert its influence in the management of the global economy, according to a report that was released in March by the London-based Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs. Other countries are ready to learn from China's experiences in transforming its economy, it added.



二十国集团(the Group of Twenty, G20)由19个国家(阿根廷Argentina, 澳大利亚Australia, 巴西Brazil, 加拿大Canada, 中国China, 法国France, 德国Germany, 印度India, 印度尼西亚Indonesia, 意大利Italy, 日本Japan, 韩国South Korea, 墨西哥Mexico, 俄罗斯Russia, 沙特阿拉伯Saudi Arabia, 南非South Africa, 土耳其Turkey, 英国United Kingdom, 美国United States)和欧盟(the European Union)构成,聚集了世界主要发达和新兴经济体的领导人,共同应对全球经济面临的挑战。为保证二十国集团的讨论能够代表众多国家的利益,每年二十国集团的主席都邀请嘉宾国(guest countries)参加包括领导人峰会在内的本年度会议。

二十国集团经济体的领导人每年召开一次会议,而二十国集团的财政部长与央行行长每年会召开数次会议,商讨提振全球经济(strengthen the global economy)、改革全球金融机构(reform international financial institutions)、改进金融规章(improve financial regulation)以及在每个成员经济体实施必要的经济改革(implement the key economic reforms that are needed in each member economy)的方式。

二十国集团经济体第一次会议是在1999年亚洲金融危机(Asian financial crisis)之后,以财政部长与央行行长会议的形式召开的。2008年,二十国集团经济体领导人第一次会议召开, 该组织在应对全球金融危机(responding to the global financial crisis)方面发挥了重要作用。

二十国集团得到各国际组织提供的分析和建议支持,这些组织包括金融稳定委员会(the Financial Stability Board)、国际劳工组织(the International Labour Organisation)、国际货币基金(the International Monetary Fund)、经济合作与发展组织(Economic Co-operation and Development)、联合国(the United Nations)、世界银行(the World Bank)和世界贸易组织(the World Trade Organization)。这些组织的代表受邀参加二十国集团的主要会议。

翻译:陈淑敏 朱佩玲(中国日报网爱新闻iNews译者)



















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