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APEC meeting showcases China's responsibilities and contributions

Zhang Ce; Liang Bailin

Editor's note: Zhang Ce is an assistant research fellow at the Institute of Finance & Banking, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; and Liang Bailin is a research assistant and student at the School of Finance, Renmin University of China. The article reflects the authors' opinions and not necessarily the views of CGTN.

President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Joe Biden, leaders of the world's two largest economies, held their first face-to-face meeting since the G20 Summit in Indonesia in November 2022, marking a crucial opportunity to foster stability of the most important bilateral relations in the world. The meeting is of profound significance both for bilateral purposes and particularly for the wider Asia-Pacific region, where members hope China and the U.S. can forge a modus vivendi. Through the joint efforts of the host country and member economies in the Asia-Pacific region, the meeting has achieved practical and noteworthy results, which will inject stability and positive impetus into the development of the region and the world.

Against the backdrop of global instability and recurring regional conflicts, the most concrete outcome of this Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting is a signal of "cooperation and stability" sent to the world, in which China undoubtedly played an important role. Although China and the U.S. have ideological differences in several aspects, "the future of China-U.S. relations will be created by our peoples", mentioned by President Xi in his speech at the welcome dinner in San Francisco. Biden also described this meeting as "the most constructive and productive discussion we've had." 

During the APEC meeting, Xi also held individual meetings with leaders from various countries, including Peru, Mexico, Fiji, Japan, and Brunei. China has expressed its commitment to jointly uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, adhere to the path of dialogue instead of confrontation, engage in partnership rather than forming alliances in state-to-state relations, and safeguard the prosperity and stability of the Asia-Pacific region. The world has witnessed and praised China's efforts in promoting world stability and regional cooperation.

Climate change is one of the key topics discussed this time. APEC economies are at the center of the global economy, and collaboration among economies within APEC is crucial to addressing global challenges such as climate change and energy security. 

China and the U.S. initiated the "Sunnylands Statement on Enhancing Cooperation to Address the Climate Crisis." The U.S. and China are the world's largest emitters of greenhouse gases. Rapid reductions in emissions from both countries will fundamentally determine whether countries can limit the rise in global average temperatures to within 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. For the betterment of current and future generations, China and the U.S. have committed to enhancing dialogues and collaborative endeavors, uniting with convention signatories and other stakeholders of the Paris Agreement, in addressing one of the world's most pressing challenges.

Trade and economic development remains a hot topic at this APEC meeting. According to the most recent APEC Regional Trends Analysis report, there are positive indications of economic growth in the APEC region, which is projected to reach 3.3 percent in 2023, reflecting an improvement from the 2.6 percent recorded in 2022. 

China holds a notably influential trade position within APEC, serving as the largest trading partner of 13 APEC economies. With China's solid contribution and strong support, all members unanimously agreed to promote fair and transparent trade and investment, including enhancing the coordination of trade and investment rules, fostering the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises in trade and investment, and addressing supply chain risks. Under the premise of prioritizing development and the interests of developing economies, China is willing to strengthen practical cooperation in digital economy and green development with an expanded array of APEC economies.

(Cover via CFP)

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