Global Economic Development Forum 2022 Held in Beijing
Chinese economy has remained robust despite various risks and challenges, injecting great momentum into global economic recovery.
On March 8, the Global Economic Development Forum 2022 was held in Beijing during the annual sessions of China’s top legislature and political advisory body. The event was hosted by China International Communications Group (CICG) and France-based Fondation Prospective et Innovation (also known as Prospective and Innovation Foundation), and co-organized by the CICG Center for Europe and Asia (China Pictorial Publications) and the Academy of Contemporary China and World Studies.
Major speakers at the forum included Du Zhanyuan, president of CICG; Jean-Pierre Raffarin, former Prime Minister of France and president of France-based Fondation Prospective et Innovation; Zhu Min, vice chairman of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and former deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund; Lv Benfu, vice chairman of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and professor with the School of Economics and Management, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS); Zhou Hong, member of the National People’s Congress (NPC) Foreign Affairs Committee, vice chairperson of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy, and director of the Academic Division for International Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS); and Zhou Yanli, member of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and former vice chairman of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission. Nearly 20 former political leaders, renowned experts and scholars from China, France, Russia, India, South Korea, Brazil and other countries conducted in-depth discussions under the theme “Revitalizing Global Development through Bridging the Development Divide” at the forum.
In his opening speech, Du Zhanyuan, president of CICG, said that the ups and downs of the COVID-19 pandemic control and the increasingly obvious negative impacts of the Ukraine crisis on the global economy have added more uncertainties to global economic recovery. He stressed that the Chinese economy has remained robust despite various risks and challenges, injecting great momentum into global economic recovery. Currently, COVID-19 is still the primary factor restraining global economic recovery. The international community should work together to overcome the pandemic. And the immediate priority should be to maintain peace and security. China advocates promoting the implementation of global development initiatives to push global development to a new stage of balance, coordination and inclusiveness.
Jean-Pierre Raffarin, former Prime Minister of France and president of France-based Fondation Prospective et Innovation, noted that global governance faces many challenges and the ideas that “we share the same planet” and “the earth is our common home” have become the consensus of all mankind. Therefore, the best way to protect human beings is to protect the earth. Among the efforts, the responses to climate change have attracted worldwide attention, which unite all countries together. China played an important role in achieving the adoption of the Paris Agreement. Facing the constantly changing world, people from all countries aspire for peace and development. Essentially, peace is a common vision that can only be achieved by common efforts and hard work.
Zhu Min, vice chairman of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and former deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund, said that according to China’s government work report, the country set its GDP growth target at around 5.5 percent for 2022, which is expected to play an important role in advancing the recovery of the global economy. Realizing the goal needs the Chinese government to exhibit great political courage and responsibility especially in today’s complicated international environment. China would like to see more countries to share its market opportunities and achieve common development by further strengthening international cooperation, expanding domestic demand, deepening opening up and improving the business environment to attract more foreign investment.
Gao Anming, vice president and editor-in-chief of CICG, presided over the opening ceremony of the forum. He noted that the global development situation is becoming increasingly complex with urgent needs to find solutions to cure COVID-19, revive the global economy, bridge the development divide, and achieve balanced global development. Facing a series of challenges, China’s economy has still stayed robust and resilient, with its growth rate at the forefront among major economies globally. China has become a major engine of global economic growth amid the pandemic.
Lv Benfu, vice chairman of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and professor with the School of Economics and Management, UCAS, commented that the impetus of the digital economy for China’s economic progress is evidenced by expanding information infrastructure, reduced costs of commodity circulation, reconstruction of manufacturing industries, etc. Globally, the digital economy will also play an increasingly important role. At the same time, it may result in new challenges such as the digital divide, cross-border data flow, and global digital governance that require urgent global solutions.
Zhou Hong, member of the NPC Foreign Affairs Committee, vice chairperson of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy, and director of the Academic Division for International Studies at the CASS, opined that as people’s understanding of development conditions and factors deepens, improving governance models and strengthening environmental protection become even more crucial for development. Practice has shown that mutual benefits under the framework of South-South cooperation and connectivity under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative play a major role in promoting development.
Zhou Yanli, member of the CPPCC National Committee and former vice chairman of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission, noted that the digital economy has risen to a national development strategy of China and the scale of data in areas such as government affairs, internet usage, and industry has maintained rapid growth. The next step should be to seize the new opportunities of digital industrialization and industrial digitalization, use digital technology to empower finance and serve the real economy, and accelerate the high-quality development of the digital economy.
Alexander V. Lomanov, vice director of the Primakov Institute of World Economy and International Relations of the Russian Academy of Sciences, stressed that China’s development experience can offer many inspirations for the international community. China vows to make economic stability the top priority and pursue progress while maintaining stability in 2022, sending an important signal to the world.
Mohammed Saqib, an Indian economist and secretary-general of the India-China Economic and Cultural Council, said that with deglobalization impacting growth in the world and the capital and technology flows, India will have to strengthen its economy on its own, which seems a very difficult task at this moment.
Ronnie Lins, director of the Center China & Brazil: Research and Business (CCB), emphasized that to reduce social inequalities, the developing countries should implement more specific actions with the help of developed countries. For example, they should implement infrastructure projects and actions to maximize production and supply chains, whose primary focus should be production innovation and cultivation of new professionals.
At this forum, inspirational insights on topics such as promoting global cooperation to meet new challenges, accelerating stable recovery of the world economy, and achieving balanced global development were shared by scholars and experts including Lv Benfu, vice chairman of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and professor with the School of Economics and Management of the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences; Lee Hee Ok, director of the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies at Sungkyunkwan University; Liu Xinghua, director of the Chinese Center for Economic and Financial Studies under the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy and a distinguished professor with Tongji University, and Youn Bo Ra, deputy director general of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency. Feng Wei, vice president of the China Institute for Innovation & Development Strategy, and Yu Yunquan, president of the Academy of Contemporary China and World Studies, jointly presided over the forum’s panel discussion. Jiang Yonggang, president of the CICG Center for Europe and Asia, delivered the closing speech at the forum.