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Stride Forward on the Right Path for a Better Post-COVID World

Ma Xinmin
Chinese Ambassador to Sudan

On January 17, 2022, Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a special address, titled Forge Ahead with Confidence and Fortitude to Jointly Create a Better Post-COVID World, at the 2022 World Economic Forum Virtual Session. This is the third time China’s top leader has addressed the Davos forum, the weathervane of the world economy after he gave two speeches at the event in 2017 and 2021 respectively. President Xi Jinping’s address takes the pulse of changes of the times and proposes a Chinese solution on how to create a better post-COVID world from the historical and philosophical perspectives, receiving extensive attention and positive responses from the international community.

Defeating the pandemic remains a pressing priority for all. Talking about the once-in-a-century pandemic, President Xi Jinping remarked that amid the pandemic, countries are not riding separately in some 190 small boats, but are rather all in a giant ship on which our shared destiny hinges. Strong confidence and cooperation represent the only right way to defeat the pandemic. Any attempts to stigmatize or attach a geographical label to the virus or to use origin tracing as a tool to smear others are a political virus that will only cause needless delay in response and distract us from the overall objective. China calls on countries to collaborate on the research and development of medicines and jointly build multiple lines of defense against the coronavirus. Equitable distribution and quicken vaccination of COVID-19 vaccines must be ensured to close the global immunization gap. China has already sent over two billion doses of vaccines to more than 120 countries and international organizations. Still, China will provide another one billion doses to African countries, including 600 million doses as a donation, which will make an even greater contribution to an early victory of humanity over the virus.

Staying united and coordinated holds the key to our victory over COVID-19. The pandemic is not only detrimental to the health and safety of human beings, but also a grave threat to the world economy and global governance. For the common questions of containing the virus, stabilizing the economy, and ensuring people’s wellbeing, President Xi Jinping reiterated that economic globalization is the trend of the times and that to turn the world economy from crisis to recovery, it is imperative to strengthen macro-policy coordination. We need to uphold true multilateralism and make economic globalization more open, inclusive, balanced, and beneficial for all, thus adding new momentum to the world economy. He also stressed that major economies should strengthen macro-policy synergy by coordinating the objectives, intensity, and pace of our fiscal and monetary policies; major developed countries should adopt responsible economic policies, manage policy spillovers, and avoid severe impacts on developing countries; and international economic and financial institutions should play their constructive role to enhance policy synergy and prevent systemic risks. This is China’s sense of responsibility to uphold equity and justice. It also reveals China’s endeavors to keep the reform of the global governance system on the right track.

Aspiring to share development represents a fundamental means. Development holds the master key to all problems. In September last year, President Xi Jinping put forward a Global Development Initiative at the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, calling on the global community to care about issues of development. His proposition received positive responses from other developing countries and international organizations like the UN. At this year’s World Economic Forum, President Xi Jinping announced that the Global Development Initiative is a public good open to the whole world, which aims to draw international attention to the pressing challenges faced by developing countries, form synergy with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and boost common development across the world. This Initiative embraces the people-centered core concept and takes the betterment of people’s well-being and realization of their well-rounded development as the starting point and ultimate goal. It strives to bridge the development divide, create more development opportunities, and make global development more equitable, effective, and inclusive, so that no countries will be left behind. This demonstrates once again that China remains steadfast in promoting and contributing to global development.

Seeking win-win cooperation serves as an essential approach to our success. The past year saw a combination of changes and turmoil across the world. When the international community faces a major test with choices between openness and seclusion, between win-win results and zero-sum games, and between unity and division, President Xi Jinping stressed that the right way forward for humanity is peaceful development and win-win cooperation and that different countries and civilizations may prosper together based on respect for each other, and seek common ground and win-win outcomes by setting aside differences. We should work for a stable international order, advocate common values of humanity, and build a community with a shared future for mankind. We should choose dialogue over confrontation, inclusiveness over exclusion, and stand against all forms of unilateralism, protectionism, hegemony, or power politics. His remarks give voice to the common aspiration of the vast majority of countries to oppose a new Cold War and the division of the world, and represent the right approach for countries to coexist in peace with each other. Again, this attests to China’s firm commitment to standing on the right side of history and the side of international equity and justice.

China is committed to delivering on its promises. China always looks at the relationship between its development and the fate of the world dialectically. As China is marching on a new journey of building a modern socialist country in all aspects, President Xi Jinping noted in his address China’s commitment in three respects. First, China will stay committed to pursuing high-quality development. It will strive for substantive progress in the well-rounded development of individuals. Second, China will stay committed to reform and opening-up. All types of capital are welcome to operate in China in compliance with laws and regulations. China will steadily advance institutional opening-up that covers rules, management, and standards and work to integrate into the regional and global economy and to achieve mutual benefit and win-win results. Third, China will stay committed to promoting ecological conservation. To this end, China will honor its word and keep working to achieve carbon peak and carbon neutrality. China will also actively engage in international cooperation on climate, playing its part in building a clean and beautiful world. The commitment in these three respects represents the focus of China’s future development, and, more importantly, conveys our determination and sincerity to share opportunities with the world for a bright future together.

The right path emerges when clouds are dispelled. President Xi Jinping’s address has explored the right direction for the global community to defeat the virus with unity and provided the fundamental measures for faster global recovery. His remarks have also offered a practical approach to bridging the development divide and the right way for countries to get along with each other. Guided by his remarks, China will continue to create new opportunities for the world on its journey of new development. It will work hard with Sudan and other countries to jointly overcome various difficulties on the road ahead and create a better post-COVID world.

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