Im­port expo ‘trail-blaz­ing’

China of­fers for­eign firms more open mar­ket: Xi

Global Times US Edition - - FRONT PAGE - By Yu Xi and Huang Lan­lan in Shang­hai

En­trepreneur­s and schol­ars ex­pressed con­fi­dence in the Chi­nese mar­ket on the first day of the China In­ter­na­tional Im­port Expo (CIIE), af­ter the coun­try vowed to build a more open econ­omy through prac­ti­cal mea­sures.

Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping an­nounced the open­ing of the expo, which is be­lieved to be the world’s first-ever na­tional-level expo fo­cused on im­ports, on Mon­day in Shang­hai, call­ing it a “trail-blaz­ing” move in the his­tory of in­ter­na­tional trade de­vel­op­ment, the Xinhua News Agency re­ported Mon­day. The CIIE re­flects “a ma­jor pol­icy for China to push for a new round of high-level open­ing-up and a ma­jor mea­sure for China to take the ini­tia­tive to open its mar­ket to the world,” Xi said in his key­note speech at the open-

by the In­ter­na­tional Atomic En­ergy Agency 12 times, said Hua.

Hua noted that China will firmly safe­guard its law­ful rights while con­tin­u­ing to ad­here to JCPOA. She also urged rel­e­vant par­ties to stand on the right side of his­tory.

The sanc­tions may cause fluc­tu­a­tions in oil prices and Chi­nese com­pa­nies should pay at­ten­tion to the risks gen­er­ated by price changes, Mei Xinyu, a re­search fel­low at the Chi­nese Academy of In­ter­na­tional Trade and Eco­nomic Co­op­er­a­tion, told the Global Times on Mon­day.

Mei said that some Chi­nese com­pa­nies are also tak­ing pro­tec­tive mea­sures to pre­vent be­ing hurt by the sanc­tions.

The Bank of Kun­lun, a sub­sidiary of China’s largest pe­tro­leum pro­ducer China Na­tional Pe­tro­leum Cor­po­ra­tion, in­formed its clients that it will stop han­dling yuan-de­nom­i­nated Ira­nian pay­ments to China from Novem­ber 1, Reuters quoted sources as say­ing on Oc­to­ber 23.

The bank didn’t re­spond to a Global Times in­ter­view re­quest as of press time.

China is not wor­ried about be­ing se­ri­ously im­pacted by the US sanc­tions on Iran, Mei said.

China is ex­pe­ri­enced in pro­tect­ing the le­git­i­mate in­ter­ests of its com­pa­nies that have busi­ness in Iran, when the coun­try was un­der sanc­tions, Mei noted.

Ex­emp­tion ‘ra­tio­nal’

The US has granted ex­emp­tions to eight coun­tries and re­gions al­low­ing them to tem­po­rar­ily con­tinue buy­ing Ira­nian oil, US Sec­re­tary of State Mike Pom­peo an­nounced on Mon­day. The list in­cludes China, In­dia, Greece, Ja­pan and South Korea, Reuters re­ported.

Chi­nese ex­perts noted that the ex­emp­tion was an ex­pected and ra­tio­nal de­ci­sion.

The US faces great pres­sure from its al­lies and other coun­tries af­ter im­pos­ing the sanc­tions, be­cause many coun­tries could not find al­ter­na­tives on short no­tice, He Wen­ping, a re­search fel­low at the In­sti­tute of West Asian and African Stud­ies of the Chi­nese Academy of So­cial Sciences in Bei­jing, told the Global Times on Mon­day.

She said that the ex­emp­tion is also a good­will sign sent to China from the US side, as it shows the US is tak­ing China’s in­ter­ests into con­sid­er­a­tion, rather than let­ting things come to an im­passe and wors­en­ing the bi­lat­eral ties.

Since China is Iran’s biggest oil buyer, the ex­emp­tion means China and Chi­nese com­pa­nies will suf­fer less from the sanc­tions, Tian Wen­lin, a re­search fel­low in Mid­dle Eastern stud­ies at the China In­sti­tute of Con­tem­po­rary In­ter­na­tional Re­la­tions in Bei­jing, told the Global Times on Mon­day.

“Our co­op­er­a­tion with Iran is le­git­i­mate eco­nomic co­op­er­a­tion and the US’ sanc­tions are il­le­gal. We don’t have to fol­low the US’ con­duct and we should strive to pro­tect Chi­nese com­pa­nies’ le­gal rights in Iran,” He Wen­ping noted.

Zhu Weilie, a Mid­dle East ex­pert at the Shang­hai In­ter­na­tional Stud­ies Uni­ver­sity, told the Global Times on Mon­day that if the US pushes Iran too far, it’s pos­si­ble Iran will block­ade the Strait of Hor­muz and the Per­sian Gulf, risk­ing se­ri­ous con­flict.

The US’ long-arm ju­ris­dic­tion in Iran not only cre­ates a messier sit­u­a­tion in the Mid­dle East, but it also hurts other coun­tries that have nor­mal busi­ness re­la­tions with the coun­try, ac­cord­ing to Zhu.

He warned that the US may achieve short­term re­sults from the sanc­tions, but it will pay a price in the long run.

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