Multilateralism, cooperation carry best hope for global economic recovery
China Daily

Participants attend the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Wednesday in Russia's second-largest city. IRINA MOTINA/XINHUA

One of the most important lessons from the past trying years is perhaps that no country, or individual, can stay on the lucky streak forever.

As challenges loom large and fraying cooperation is corroding the global momentum for recovery, political leaders and business communities are reaffirming their commitment to true multilateralism, economic globalization and a community with a shared future at the ongoing 25th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

The pain of stagflation has been acute, wide-ranging and potentially chronic. In the United States, gas prices soared to record highs over the past weekends. The Federal Reserve has raised its benchmark interest rate by 75 basis points, the sharpest rate hike since 1994. Cost-of-living crisis continues to rage across Europe.

Behind plunging shares, ebbing consumer confidence, dimming prospects of employment and alarming spillover effects is one household after another struggling to make ends meet and governments exerting themselves beyond measure to salvage their economies from recession.

These gloomy pictures further cloud the global economic outlook for 2022, and put a strain on the international community's endeavors to implement the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Solidarity is what the world rightly needs at this moment. Humanity should act with coordinated, proactive rather than competing, piecemeal responses to avert crises, transcend disruptions and restore global growth.

And only the initiatives and agreements implemented in earnest can revive ailing economies and patch up a fragmented world for common prosperity.

That is why we need to strengthen development partnerships and forge greater synergy with concrete actions, particularly a "soft connectivity" of development policies as well as international rules and standards, as Chinese President Xi Jinping advocated at the plenary session of the forum via video link.

The world simply cannot afford a breakdown of cooperation or to see countries working at cross-purposes and reducing their cooperation agendas to hollow promises, or mere acts of political posturing.

It is therefore necessary for them to be particularly wary of getting on board any strategy premised on invigorating the global economy while isolating certain countries.

In doing so, Xi urged countries to jointly reject attempts at decoupling, supply disruption, unilateral sanctions and maximum pressure, calling for efforts to remove trade barriers and stabilize the global industrial and supply chains.

In a world where multipolarity is trending, no country can wield absolute influence on others. Countries, whatever their sizes, are not chess pieces in a geopolitical contest, but equal-footed partners intricately woven into the global network of "peace" and "development."

The two mutually reinforcing forces bear on a sustainable future. Robust and inclusive growth is a stabilizer for peace, and a peaceful environment at home and abroad nurtures growth.

To translate its Global Development Initiative into tangible benefits for growth, China will press ahead with high-quality development and high-standard opening up, and resolutely join hands with all other countries to explore development prospects and share growth opportunities.

Countries are all in the same boat. To keep the boat afloat, we need to shelve differences and take a collaborative approach to global challenges.