External pressures 'should be used to motivate' new reform
At two special events held in Beijing to mark the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening-up, Chinese officials and experts said the country must remain committed to the policy to deal with rising internal and external problems, including trade frictions with the U.S.
"The goal of reform and opening-up is to let the Chinese people have better lives. It has also brought huge opportunities to the development of the world," said Li Wei, director of the Development Research Center of the State Council, at the opening ceremony of the China Development Forum Special Session held in Beijing on Sunday, according to a statement the forum released on Monday.
"The rapid development of China in the past 40 years was made possible by the reform and opening-up policy, and China must remain committed to the policy for its future development," Li said.
Li said the policy is facing increasing challenges to maintain the pace of economic growth. There are pressures on resources, the environment and social justice, and the international political and economic situation is increasingly difficult, he noted.
China must remain the policy in order to help put the global economy on a strong, balanced, inclusive and sustainable track, said Li.
At another event - a symposium held by the Chinese Economists 50 Forum - in Beijing on Sunday, Yang Weimin, former deputy director of the Office of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs, said that reform is a deep revolution that is bound to face difficulties.
"Reform and opening-up remains the key to China's destiny in the new age, which will lead to China's modernization and the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation," Yang said, according a report by chinanews.com on Sunday.
Su Wei, a professor at the Party School of the Chongqing Municipal Party Committee, told the Global Times on Monday that the Communist Party of China and the Chinese people are of one mind about the need to continue reform and opening-up. The whole world has witnessed the hugely positive changes the policies have brought to China, said Su.
China is at a stage where it is deepening reforms with a focus on the economy, and China would lose what it has achieved if the policy was to stop now, Su noted.
Former chief of World Bank Robert Zoellick said at the Special Session that U.S. politicians and business people are worried about China's rapid development.
Zoellick said foreign business people are concerned about the increasing size of China's State-owned enterprises, which are "pushing private companies away" and raising concern among foreign investors.
Foreign companies are worried about Chinese companies seeking technology transfers and facing regulatory limitations in China, Zoellick said, adding that when Chinese companies acquire technology transfer from partnering foreign companies, the foreign companies worry their Chinese partners will end up dominating their industry.
In response to Zoellick's concern, Bai Ming, deputy director of the international market research institute at the Ministry of Commerce, said that "Opening-up also means creating good relations with other countries and regions, bringing them opportunities and encouraging positive development."
China will not exploit other countries' development opportunities for its own good as the U.S. has, Bai told the Global Times on Monday.
Stephen Orlins, the President of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations, told the Special Session that China should rally behind the many Americans who understand that the U.S. trade dispute is not rational.
Wang Yiming, deputy director of the State Council Development Research Center, told the forum's Special Session that China should turn external pressures into motivation to push reform and opening-up.
China is actively opening up its market, undertaking multiple measures to expand imports, improving business environment and enhancing protection of intellectual property, Wang said.
Bai said that deepening of reform should focus on creating competitive advantages in high-tech, services, branding and standards instead of focusing on making low cost products as China has done in the past.