China should unite all forces to counter ‘decoupling’

By Zhang Yansheng Source: Global Times Published: 2020/9/17 19:58:22

Illustration: GT

In its COVID-19 prevention and control, China has adopted strict quarantine measures, including adjustments to international civil aviation policies to prevent imported cases. However, regretfully, these moves are misinterpreted by some Western countries as "decoupling" from the world.

In fact, China is actively promoting a new round of globalization under the strategy of forming a "dual circulation" development pattern, and is more closely linked to the global industry chain, supply chain, and value chain.

Before the outbreak of COVID-19, globalization was already in the process of retreating. The global industrial chain, supply chain and value chain, as well as global trade and investment and the real economy were already in the process of contraction and deceleration. The outbreak and continuation of the pandemic has intensified the existing process.

As an active promoter, participant and contributor of globalization, China has adopted relatively strict measures to prevent COVID-19, including adjustments to international civil aviation policies, which reflects the sense of responsibility of a big country. As the confirmed COVID-19 cases are approaching 30 million across the world, it further shows that it's rational and necessary for China to take scientific prevention measures.

It's wrong to politicize China's necessary prevention measures and misinterpret it as "decoupling" in the background of retreating globalization. When China raised the "dual circulation" development pattern during the Two Sessions, Western media's misinterpretation about the strategy as "decoupling" was also at odds with facts.

While globalization is retreating, China is still committed to promoting a new round of globalization. China has provided anti-epidemic materials such as masks and protective clothing to nearly 200 countries and regions in the world. In early September, the China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) has attracted 22,000 companies and institutions from 148 countries and regions participating online and offline. China is also actively preparing for the third China International Import Expo (CIIE) and the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.

In the context of shrinking global industrial chains, supply chains, and value chains, China still remains committed to expanding its opening up and implementing the strategy of "going out." China is the largest trading partner of more than 120 countries and regions in the world. Behind the trade activities, a considerable part of it is based on the close connection of the industrial chain, value chain, and supply chain.

Therefore, in the context of shrinking global trade, investment and manufacturing, China is still dedicated to promoting global trade and investment growth. It won't be an easy ride, and China is bound to face the strong "decoupling" trend, anti-globalization and trade protectionism.

In the fight against the "once-in-a-century" pandemic, China has taken restrict measures to prevent and control the virus, while effectively promoting production resumption and economic recovery. The progress China has made is based on consolidated prevention and control measures, which will inevitably involve civil aviation policy adjustments.

It will be difficult to effectively control the pandemic across the world in a short time. It will be a protracted battle. Relaxation of control measures will make it difficult to prevent imported cases. Too much control will hinder China's communication with the outside world. So, the civil aviation administration needs to be flexible and make adjustments appropriately, while removing the interference of excessive administrative orders and replacing them with modern governance methods.

The world is in a tug of war between globalization and de-globalization, and China is competing with the forces that want "decoupling." Against this backdrop, the world needs a more objective and comprehensive understanding of China. And China should strengthen strategic mutual trust, unite all forces that can be united and counter the decoupling trend.

The author is chief research fellow with the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.  


blog comments powered by Disqus