BUSINESS WTO members praise China's progress in trade policies

BUSINESS

WTO members praise China's progress in trade policies

CGTN

01:43, July 15, 2018

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(Photo: CGTN)

Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) said they appreciated the country's contributions towards multilateralism and least developed countries, as its seventh trade policy review (TPR) of China on Friday.

"Members generally expressed appreciation for China's active role in the WTO. China, being the world's biggest merchandise trader and one of the largest recipients of FDI (foreign direct investment), its policies have a direct impact on the global economy," said Eloi Laourou, chairperson of the TPR body, in concluding remarks.

Laourou, also Benin's ambassador to the United Nations offices in Geneva, said that WTO members commended China on its recent initiatives aimed at broadening market access and investment opportunities, the greater involvement of the private sector in the economy and its commitment to fossil fuel subsidy reform.

"Members appreciated China's ongoing reform of customs procedures, such as further use of single windows, and commitments in the Trade Facilitation Agreement," the chairperson also said.

China's Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said that the country's consistent pursuit of opening up for cooperation and mutual benefit for all remains unchanged. 

China also called for reducing trade disputes under WTO principles and rules.

How does the WTO trade policy review work?

WTO agreements mandate that all members are subject to review under the TPR mechanism, in which a member's trade and related policies are examined and evaluated at regular intervals.

All WTO members are subject to review, with the frequency depending on the country’s size. China undergoes a review every two years. 

Two documents are prepared for each review: a policy statement by the government under review, and a detailed report written independently by the WTO Secretariat. As part of the review, WTO members send in advance written questions about policies they want to be clarified and the country under review will reply. 

The meeting takes two days and a representative of the country under review makes a statement. Afterwards, the WTO members take turns commenting on the reviewed country's trade policies. On the second day, the country under review responds and the chair makes a concluding statement.

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