Initiative on Promoting Unimpeded Trade Cooperation along the Belt and Road
14, May 2017
The Thematic Session on Trade Connectivity of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, organized by the Ministry of Commerce of China, was held in Beijing on May 14, 2017. Under the theme of “Deepening Trade and Economic Cooperation along the Belt and Road for Unimpeded and Efficient trade and Win-Win Development”, participants from the related countries and international organizations had in-depth and productive discussions and shared broad common understanding. This Initiative is developed based on the discussions of the Thematic Session, and it is joined by countries and international organizations on a voluntary basis and is open for future participation.
In light of sluggish global economic growth, the participants in this Initiative (hereinafter referred to as “the participants”) recognize that it is important to promote more dynamic, inclusive and sustainable economic globalization, enhance trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, resist protectionism, boost unimpeded trade cooperation along the Belt and Road, and achieve win-win outcomes, while respecting the development objectives of countries.
The participants note the efforts to strengthen cooperation and coordination between the Belt and Road Initiative and other plans and initiatives and to promote partnerships among Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and other regions. At the same time, special attention should be given to the LDCs.
I. Promoting trade growth.
The participants emphasize their willingness to promote and expand trade through various facilitation measures, development of new business models, and cooperation on trade in services. The participants also reaffirm their support for the multilateral trading system, with the WTO as its cornerstone, and those that are WTO Members will push for positive outcomes at the WTO 11th Ministerial Conference (MC11). China will continue to open up its market by implementing a proactive import policy and providing more access for foreign products to enter the Chinese market through such measures as holding China International Import Expo from 2018, supporting business people from relevant countries to participate in trade fairs in China, and launching FTA negotiations with interested countries and regions. It is estimated that China will import goods worth US$ 2 trillion from the countries and regions along the Belt and Road in the coming five years.