On November 9, 2010, President Hu Jintao, prior to attending the fifth G20 summit in Seoul, received a joint written interview of ROK media. He answered questions on the G20’s role in coping with the international financial crisis and future development, China’s contributions to tackling the international financial crisis and boosting the world economic recovery, China’s relations with Asian neighboring countries and the current and future development of China-ROK relations.
Concerning the role of the previous four G20 summits in tackling the international financial crisis and the G20 summit’s future development, Hu said that the G20 is an effective mechanism of the international community to handle the international financial crisis and a major platform of promoting world economic cooperation. The international community needs the G20 summit to accelerate world economic development and address economic and financial challenges. It serves the interest of all to make best use of the G20 mechanism.
He pointed out that the G20 has held 4 summits since November 2008. Those summits, by formulating countermeasures to the crisis, played an important role of spurring world economic recovery, stabilizing the international financial market and boosting the confidence of people and enterprises.
He stressed that the world economy is recovering slowly. But the foundation remains weak, the process is unbalanced and there exist relatively big uncertainties. We still face serious challenges before we can get rid of the impact of the crisis and complete economic recovery. The G20, as a key platform of promoting international economic cooperation, is responsible for pushing all parties to strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination and boosting strong, sustained and balanced growth of world economy.
First, G20 members should continue to carry forward the spirit of helping each other. It is critical that they should maintain mutually beneficial and win-win partnerships. All members should strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination, work hard to eradicate the negative factors of world economic growth and consolidate the momentum of recovery.
Second, members should implement the commitments they made during the previous G20 summits. The first four summits made a series of commitments and many measures have shown results. For the next step, all members must accelerate the fulfillment of commitments and reinforce and enlarge the G20’s role and influence.
Third, members should create a sound environment for world economic growth. They should oppose various forms of protectionism, further eradicate the policy measures hindering free trade and investment and cultivate new growth points in the process of economic globalization.
He noted that China is willing to cooperate with all parties to make positive results out of the G20 summit.
Talking about the role of China and other G20 members in promoting strong, sustained and balanced growth of world economy and the macroeconomic policy coordination between developed and developing countries, Hu said that the G20 leaders decided at the Pittsburgh summit in September 2009 to build the framework for strong, sustained and balanced growth and coordinate macroeconomic policies between developed and emerging markets. Since then, with the concerted efforts of all the members and the international community, the basic trend of world economic recovery has been set and the most difficult time has passed. It fully proves the effectiveness of macroeconomic policy coordination among the G20 members.
He pointed out that developed and emerging markets, under the G20 framework, are reviewing their experience, discussing and formulating clear strategic goals in order to stimulate strong, sustained and balanced growth of world economy.
He emphasized that we must recognize the different development stages and economic levels of the G20 members. Only by fully respecting each other’s national realities and taking care of each other’s concerns can the G20 members make their measures and actions of macroeconomic policy coordination effective. He believes that the goal of boosting strong, sustained and balanced growth of world economy is achievable so long as developed and developing countries pursue an equal, mutually beneficial and win-win development partnership.
As to China’s contributions to handling the international financial crisis and stimulating world economic recovery, he said that the international financial crisis which broke out two years ago also heavily impacted China. Faced with sudden serious challenges, China launched and comprehensively implemented the package stimulus in a timely manner and effectively curbed slide of its economic growth. Since the beginning of this year, while the world economic situation still remains complicated, China has strengthened macro control in a targeted manner, accelerated change of economic growth mode and economic restructuring and achieved clear results. China, as the largest developing country and a major economy, maintains its own economic stability and development, which itself is a major contribution to boosting world economic recovery.
He indicated that China also takes an active part in the international cooperation to fight the crisis. In November 2008 when the G20 leaders held their first summit in Washington, China proposed countries should boost confidence, cooperate closely and go through difficulties together and reform the international financial system in a comprehensive, balanced, progressive and practical principle. Those proposals were highly recognized by the international community. At each of the G20 summits, China joined other members in making the G20 a major platform of handling the international financial crisis and promoting the economic cooperation worldwide and achieving substantial progress of reforming the international financial system. Under huge pressure, China maintained the basic stability of RMB exchange rate and pushed forward the reform of RMB exchange rate formation mechanism in the principle of initiative, controllability and gradual progress. China contributed another US$50 billion to the IMF, participated in the IFC’s Trade Finance Program, supported the financing business of regional development banks and provided relevant countries and regions with currency swap, credit, debt relief, tariff exemption and other assistances. Facts show that China has made great contributions to world economic recovery.
He stressed that the world economy is slowly recovering. However, being fragile and unbalanced, the recovery is not optimistic. Against such a situation, all countries must perform their responsibilities, face up to their own problems, insist on international cooperation and properly handle differences. China will try its best to handle its own affairs well and never blame its own problems upon others. China will continue to carry forward the spirit of helping each other, work with other G20 members to make the Seoul summit a success and actively promote strong, sustained and balanced growth of world economy.
With regard to how the Seoul summit should reflect the features of emerging markets and Asia, Hu said that the G20 Seoul summit, as the first of its kind to be held in an emerging market and in Asia, is of great significance to the development of the G20 mechanism. China expects all the G20 members to push the Seoul summit to implement the consensuses reached at previous summits and reflect the features of emerging markets and Asia.
He pointed out that the Seoul summit should focus on the following discussions: first, G20 members should continue to strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination in the spirit of helping each other and mutual benefit and send the positive signal of jointly tackling the major challenges faced by world economy in order to boost market confidence and cement the momentum of recovery; second, move forward the reform of international financial system, reinforce the supervision on international financial market and increase the voice and representativeness of emerging markets and developing countries in international financial institutions; third, solve the unbalanced North-South development and provide political support for achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals; fourth, oppose protectionism, push the Doha Round to achieve comprehensive and balanced results and realize the goal of development round.
As to China’s relations with Asian neighboring countries, he noted that China and its Asian neighbors in general enjoy sound relations featured by close high-level exchanges, various forms of partnership and expanding mutually beneficial cooperation. With the joint efforts of all sides, China’s cooperation with Asian neighbors in the fields of trade, investment, infrastructure, finance, science and technology, culture and education has reached unprecedented depth and height. We respect and support each other on issues related with our core interest; we help each other to handle the international financial crisis; we collaborate with each other to tackle the regional hot-spot issues; we understand each other and forge ahead together to promote regional cooperation; we assist each other in fighting against serious natural disasters.
China cherishes its traditional friendship with neighboring countries, pursues the principle of taking neighbors as good friends and partners and is committed to building a region with peace and stability, equality and mutual trust, mutual benefit and reciprocity together with neighbors. We adhere to solving the differences and problems with neighboring countries appropriately through consultations and dialogues. China has actively promoted peace talks and advocated the spirit of solidarity to handle certain disputes in Asia. He believes that Asia, with peace, stability, development and prosperity, will rise in the world and enjoy a better tomorrow with the joint efforts of all countries.
About the current and future development of China-South Korea relations, he said that China and South Korea enjoy geographical proximity, cultural similarities and a long history of friendly exchanges. The establishment of China-South Korea diplomatic ties in 1992 opened a new page of bilateral relations. Over the past 18 years, the two countries have maintained rapid development of cooperation in all fields, frequent high-level exchanges, deep strategic mutual trust, close trade and economic cooperation and dynamic cultural and educational exchanges. People of both countries also enjoy deep friendship and mutual understanding. China and South Korea maintain sound communications and coordination and hold wide common interests in the international and regional affairs. He is satisfied with the development of China-South Korea relations.
He emphasized that both China and South Korea are important countries in Northeast Asia. To consolidate and develop China-South Korea relations serves the fundamental interest of both countries and their people and is also beneficial to regional peace, stability and prosperity. China expects to work with South Korea to deepen the bilateral exchanges and cooperation and raise the bilateral strategic partnership to a new level.