Xi stresses key role of G20
China will offer as much assistance as possible in global battle against virus
Members of the G20 should enhance their coordination in macroeconomic policies to prevent a global recession resulting from the novel coronavirus outbreak, President Xi Jinping said on Thursday.
Xi made the remark while delivering a speech during the G20 Extraordinary Leaders’ Summit on COVID19. The summit, in the form of a videoconference, is the first of its kind under the G20 framework.
Noting that novel coronavirus pneumonia is spreading around the world, Xi said that the international community should boost its confidence, make joint efforts and enhance international cooperation to strive for victory in mankind’s battle against the pandemic.
The G20 countries should implement powerful and effective fiscal and monetary policies, enhance coordination on financial supervision and jointly maintain the stability of the global industrial chain, he said.
Xi pledged that China will make greater efforts to supply medicine, daily necessities and disease prevention materials to the global market.
In order to make a contribution to stabilizing the global economy, he said, China will continue to carry out a proactive fiscal policy and stable monetary policy, promote reform and opening-up steadily, ease market access, improve the business environment, increase imports and expand outbound investment.
The president called on G20 members to take joint measures, including reducing tariffs, removing trade barriers and promoting free trade, to send a strong signal to boost the global economy.
China, which upholds the concept of building a community with a shared future for mankind, would like to share its experience in disease prevention and control with other countries, launch joint research and development of medicines and vaccines, and offer as much assistance as possible to countries that are affected by the disease, Xi said.
The virus knows no borders and the epidemic is the common enemy of all, Xi said, adding that the international community should join forces to build a joint prevention and control network.
China has established an online knowledge center on the prevention and control of novel coronavirus pneumonia, and the center is open to all countries, he added.
China supports the World Health Organization playing a leading role in setting scientific prevention and control measures and preventing the cross-border spread of the disease, Xi said.
The G20 members should enhance the sharing of information on disease prevention and control, promote comprehensive and effective methods for disease prevention and control and hold highlevel meetings on global public health, he said.
Xi said that China will remember and cherish the friendship shown when it was in difficulty and some other countries offered sincere help and support.
Wang Yiwei, director of the Institute of International Affairs at Renmin University of China, said that the special summit is the most important multilateral event since the outbreak of the disease because the pandemic has led to a global public health crisis unprecedented in the past century.
Major economies should coordinate their economic policies as some countries’ stimulus policies have caused turbulence in the global financial market, he said, adding that greater communication is needed to prevent the health crisis from turning into a global financial crisis.
From a long-term perspective, the G20 members should also discuss how to prevent the outbreak of similar epidemics and improve the global governance system, he added.
Koh King Kee, president of the Centre for New Inclusive Asia, a leading Asian think tank based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, said that the G20 meeting is most timely and of critical importance in the global effort to stem the spread of the virus.
Moreover, as the major economies of the world are under lockdown, the world economy is in danger of slipping into a recession.
“World leaders must now act and collaborate, putting aside ideology and geopolitics, take swift, strong and unconventional measures not only to fight the common enemy, COVID-19, but also to prevent a global recession,” he said.
He added that China now has the pandemic under control and has rebooted its economy. It has both the experience and expertise to share with the world and the capacity to produce much needed medical supplies for countries hard hit by the pandemic.
“President Xi’s participation in the G20 meeting is a must, as China plays a leading role both in ensuring the health of mankind and the world economy,” he said.
Hirotake Ran, a professor of East Asia studies at Musashino University in Tokyo, said Xi’s speech at the meeting attracted great attention globally.
“China was the first country to be hit by the virus and was the most affected one, and it achieved great successes after making great sacrifices. Therefore, the information, experience and lessons offered by China are important for other countries,” Ran said.
“Although the situation and system differs from country to country, it is of great significance to sum up these excellent and effective measures in order to contain the epidemic as soon as possible,” Ran added.
President Xi Jinping speaks during the G20 Extraordinary Leaders’ Summit on COVID-19 on Thursday. The president participated in the summit, which was in the form of a videoconference, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.