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G20 consensus to fuel recovery, say experts

Consensus achieved during the 5th G20 Leaders' Summit will promote economic and trade cooperation globally, as it deals with the requisites needed for recovery and sustainable growth, experts said.

Chen Chao, deputy director-general of the Department of International Trade and Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Commerce, said the two-day virtual summit held over the weekend has managed to reach a consensus on several pressing issues like trade and investment, finance, digital economy and health.

At the Riyadh summit, the G20 leaders endorsed the "G20 Actions to Support World Trade and Investment in Response to COVID-19", and formulated 38 specific cooperation measures in eight areas including strengthening policy coordination, improving trade facilitation, promoting international investment, and unblocking logistics networks, Chen said.

The members were unanimous that the multilateral trading system is now as important as ever, and said that the Riyadh Initiative on the Future of the World Trade Organization provided an additional opportunity to discuss and reaffirm the objectives and the founding principles of the multilateral trading system as well as demonstrate the leaders' ongoing political support for the necessary reforms of the WTO.

Created in 1999, the G20 has most of the major economies in the world as members, and collectively represents around 80 percent of the world's economic output, two-thirds of the global population and three-quarters of the international trade. Members from the G20 countries gather frequently to discuss the various financial and socioeconomic issues.

The G20 leaders have also promised to keep the markets open, and strive for a free, fair, inclusive, nondiscriminatory, transparent, predictable, and stable trade and investment environment.

Leaders will also work to increase the sustainability and resilience of national, regional, and global supply chains to foster the sustainable integration of developing and least developed countries into the trading system and share the objective of promoting inclusive economic growth through increased participation of micro-, small-and medium-sized enterprises in international trade and investment.

"The summit has demonstrated the firm confidence of G20 members to cope with challenges and will provide strong impetus for global economic recovery," said Chen.

Bai Ming, deputy director of the international market research institute under the ministry, said it was necessary to adhere to multinationalism and free trade to reboot the flagging world economy, which is grappling with the pandemic and rising protectionism.

"The pandemic and rising protectionism have exerted serious pressure on the already flagging world economy, such as disrupting international supply chains," Bai said.

"To cope with the situation, major economies must come up with concrete efforts to support multinationalism, ensure smooth operation of the global industrial and supply chains, and facilitate trade and investment."

Only through solid economic and trade cooperation can the global economy develop the stable fundamentals necessary to deal with the pandemic and other uncertainties, he said.

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