2020 CIIE sends a clear, strong signal to world

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Global Times editorial Source: Global Time

A photo taken outside of the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai) shows the mascot of the 3rd China International Import Expo (CIIE). The CIIE kicked off on Wednesday. Photo:cnsphoto

The third China International Import Expo (CIIE) kicked off Wednesday in East China’s Shanghai. The successful hosting of the world’s largest business expo on schedule in the metropolitan sent a strong signal to the world that China is determined and capable of opening up to the outside world, and that there is no obstacle to disrupt this fundamental direction.

The CIIE experienced at least two major shocks. First, the US launched a trade war against China. The trade war is a test of China’s assessment of the external environment for opening-up and the country’s recognition of relations between opening-up and long-term interests: Do we persist in opening up to pursue short-term gains, or protect it as the foundation of long-term economic policy?

The other shock is the COVID-19 pandemic, which has severely hit world trade. Under such an impact, no one would be surprised if the CIIE were suspended. But the event is taking place as scheduled – China has to overcome the risk of the epidemic spreading in the country. This needs not only determination and courage but also a strong ability to effectively control the virus spread.

At first glance, this might be a precarious thing. However, Chinese people familiar with the CIIE are confident that it can be held successfully as epidemic prevention and control in China is highly systematic. China has developed comprehensive measures and has gained rich experiences in battling the epidemic – from the detection of infected people upon their entry into the country and during quarantine to the control of the spread of sporadic outbreaks. This means that the risk of virus spread will be highly controllable during the trade event.

Such capability doesn’t come from nowhere but stems from China’s systemic advantages. It shows China is able to deal with any major strategic challenge. We believe this year’s CIIE, amid the raging pandemic, will increase China’s reliability as a partner.

Although some US and Western media outlets have questioned China’s motive to hold the CIIE, the event has been organized for three consecutive years despite various adverse factors. China’s policy of opening-up and moves conforming to its words tell the tale.

Many countries and the international business circle know that China is devoted to opening-up and is capable of opening up while integrating itself into the world through opening-up.

Outside commercial powers that have embraced the Chinese market and trusted China’s national prestige in the past decades have made their day. China has a different political system from the West with its own characteristics. But China’s will to open up and pursue mutually beneficial cooperation is more than sincere. China firmly upholds a win-win philosophy. In every period when China’s development was looked down upon by the outside world, the country performed much stronger. The longer the term, the more those who are optimistic about China will gain.

Maintaining the policy is one of the sources of China’s strength. Since the beginning of the reform and opening-up, China’s major policies have been quite stable. Policy adjustments are made on the basis of international rules, and their causes and effects are clear. Never has China cracked down on any foreign company as what the US has done to Chinese high-tech firm Huawei. Some people have accused China of using economic leverage in its foreign relations. But the fact is, although China and the US are the two biggest economies in the world, China has imposed much fewer economic sanctions on others than the US has.

China is the only big power that holds an import-themed national exhibition. The CIIE has not only promoted imports, but also created a sense of ritual, which is of practical significance in China. We hope the outside world understands this, and attaches more importance to interactions with the CIIE.

The outside world should view China objectively and abandon prejudice. A country in which 1.4 billion people are enjoying a better life and the largest exchange of goods with the outside world is unlikely to be extremely alien, as described by a few Westerners.

By hosting the CIIE, China has once again opened its arms to the outside world. The Chinese people believe the world needs countries to embrace each other.

We hope all countries and regions agree.

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