Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) yesterday called for greater global economic integration and warned against decoupling, while calling on the US and its allies to avoid “bossing others around.”
“International affairs should be conducted by way of negotiations and discussions, and the future destiny of the world should be decided by all countries,” Xi said at the Boao Forum on Asia, without naming the US specifically. “One or a few countries shouldn’t impose their rules on others, and the world shouldn’t be led on by the unilateralism of a few countries.”
In a veiled critique of US efforts to reduce dependence on Chinese supply chains and withhold exports of goods like advanced computer chips, Xi said: “Any effort to build barriers and decouple works against economic and market principles, and would only harm others without benefiting oneself.”
“What we need in today’s world is justice, not hegemony,” Xi said, adding that China would never engage in an arms race. “Bossing others around or meddling in others’ internal affairs will not get one any support.”
Xi spoke by video to more than 2,000 officials and business executives attending the conference in person in Hainan. Global leaders and the heads of the IMF and the UN attended the opening ceremony via video link, state media said.
After canceling the forum last year because of the COVID-19 outbreak, China is signaling it is open for business with the resumption of the conference, billed as an Asian version of the World Economic Forum in Davos.
A slew of US executives are participating in the forum, including Apple Inc’s Tim Cook, Tesla Inc’s Elon Musk, Blackstone Group Inc’s Stephen Schwarzman and Bridgewater Associates’ Ray Dalio.
A key focus was on any new climate goals from Beijing, following promises from the US and China to work together to tackle climate change after a visit by US global climate envoy John Kerry to Shanghai last week.
Xi did not provide any new targets on his drive to cut China’s carbon emissions or tackle global climate change.
His speech had multiple mentions of the words “green” or “sustainability,” but offered no new pledges or suggestions for the pathway to carbon neutrality.
“We need to follow the philosophy of green development, advance international cooperation on climate change and do more to implement the Paris agreement on climate change,” Xi said.
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