¡¶International Investment Express¡·
hailed as platform for international co-operaton
By ZENG QINGKAI
The Fifth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Economic
Ministers' Meeting (EMM), which closed in Dalian
on July 24, serves as a unique platform for
participating countries to explore solutions
to global economic problems, said participating
Vice-Premier Wu Yi said at the ministerial meeting
that she is confident China's gross domestic
product will grow 7 per cent this year despite
the negative effects of the recent SARS outbreak
on tourism, restaurants, hotels and transportation.
She hailed the Asia-Europe Meeting as an important
bridge between the two continents and urged
member economies to give strong support to multilateral
The Chinese Government will continue to push
forward reform and opening-up and faithfully
implement its commitments to the WTO, she said.
The next decades will see China's rapid economic
growth with GDP expected to quadruple to US$4
"The Fifth EMM has sent strong positive
signals to push forward the new round of negotiations
of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to be
held in Cancun, Mexico in September,'' said
Lu Fuyuan, Chinese minister of commerce.
Lu also said the meeting has significantly promoted
co-operation and dialogue between Asia and Europe
in a variety of fields.
European Union (EU) Trade Commissioner Pascal
Lamy said the Fifth EMM looked like a WTO conference
in miniature, combining developing and developed
countries and two regions. Lamy said the meeting
would not only help promote Asian-European discussions
but advance the dialogue among the Asian countries.
Taiichiro Nishikawa, Japanese Senior Vice-Minister
of Economy, Trade and Industry, said that ASEM
would play a significant role in promoting trade
and investment between the two continents.
Around 250 delegates from China, 15 EU member
states, Japan, South Korea and seven of the
10-member ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian
Nations) nations, attended the meeting.
The participating ministers discussed six topics
during the meeting: Global economic growth,
the new round of WTO free trade talks, facilitation
of trade, promotion of investment, direction
of development of Asian and European economies
and closer partnership between the two continents.
A chair's statement, listing the outcomes of
the fifth EMM, was published after the meeting.
The statement said that the adverse impact on
the medium and long-term economic development
of the affected regions could be minimized if
good measures and actions could be implemented
in the areas of public health, trade, tourism
and movement of goods and business people.
"Bilateral or regional initiatives should
not be favoured over multilateralism, as well
as the need to ensure that all agreements are
compatible with WTO rules,'' said the statement.
The statement said participating ministers expressed
concerns and worries on the slow advance of
the ongoing WTO negotiations, and urged more
effort and co-operation to ensure the timely
conclusion of the negotiations.
"Both Asian and European countries reiterated
their strong commitments to a strong, open,
transparent and fair multilateral trading system
under the WTO and highlighted the importance
of the successful conclusion of an ambitious
round to revitalize the world economy through
further trade liberalization and strengthening
of the rules-based multilateral trading system,''
said the statement.
The statement urged the acceleration of the
current WTO accession negotiation of Viet Nam,
based on a mutually acceptable market access
commitments and adherence to WTO rules.
With regard to the issue of the enlargement
process of the EU, the statement said the EU
pledged to continue to be an open trading partner,
with an expanded single market of 450 million
people sharing the same tariffs and trade rules
from the date of the new members' accession.
In addition, the statement said the Sixth ASEM
EMM will be held in Rotterdam, Netherlands from
16-17 September 2004, and the outcomes of the
Fifth EMM will be reported to the Fifth ASEM
to be held in Hanoi, Viet Nam in 2004.
to highlight seminars
By HU MEIDONG and DUAN RUOLAN
The annual China International Fair for Investment
and Trade (CIFIT) will highlight a series of high-level
seminars and forums on its seventh session, to be
held on September 8 to 11, in the port city of Xiamen
in Southeast China's Fujian province.
The 30-odd seminars and forum cover such topics as
investment strategy, international co-operation, enterprises
merger, trade and investment barrier, new and high
technology application and logistics.
"The CIFIT International Investment Forum, sponsored
by the Ministry of Commerce, is an important platform
for investors around the globe to share the latest
investment information,'' said Xiamen Vice Mayor Huang
Ling at a press conference held in the capital city
Distinguished officials and businessmen, including
Minister of Commerce Lu Fuyuan, CEO of Ericsson or
Volkswagen and officials from the Hong Kong Special
Administrative Region, will deliver speeches at the
"As an acknowledgement of CIFIT's influence among
international investors, United Nations Conference
on Trade and Development will release the 2003 World
Investment Report for the first time in Xiamen on
September 8,'' said Huang.
Being a part of the series seminars, eight symposiums
on overseas investment environment and policies will
also be held to help domestic investors seek golden
opportunities in the overseas market.
The eight symposiums expect to attract 1,900 participants
from the Ministry of Commerce, the World Association
of Investment Promotion Agencies and governmental
departments from the United States, France, Mexico
and South Africa.
Such topics as investment in the Caribbean countries
and ASEAN member countries, marketing explanation
in Turkey and the newly signed Closer Economic Partnership
Arrangement (CEPA) between Hong Kong and the mainland
will be discussed.
China's only State-level investment promotion fair,
CIFIT is alluring more global attention. In the sixth
session alone, participants from 96 counties and regions
attended the fair.
Contracts worth US$63.1 billion were signed and foreign
trade transactions worth US$5.1 billion fulfilled
in the first six sessions.