As world leaders are gathering in Southeast Asia for two high-profile global meetings this week, the international community is expecting them to pool their wisdom and step up efforts to tackle a multitude of pressing common challenges and chart a pathway to global recovery and common development.
The 17th Group of 20 (G20) Summit will be hosted on Tuesday and Wednesday in Indonesia's resort island of Bali. It is followed by the 29th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting in the Thai capital of Bangkok.
In the face of overlapping crises such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, intensifying geopolitical tensions, a fragile global economy and increasing climate woes, building consensus and enhancing coordination among countries, especially the world's major economies, to lead global efforts will be key focal points at the two meetings. Meanwhile, there is an urgent call for a robust, well-organized and balanced collective global response to these challenges.
As experts have observed, to tide over difficulties, the G20 and APEC members need to work together to find effective solutions and take joint actions to facilitate cooperation. They also hope for a bigger and more positive role that China can play in achieving strong, sustainable, inclusive and balanced global development.
SOLIDARITY NEEDED MORE THAN EVER
Across the planet, the coronavirus is still spreading while the global economy is staggering towards a possible deep recession. What's worse, the world sees growing attempts to form exclusive blocs, clamor for decoupling and incite confrontations, which have severely undermined global solidarity and hampered international cooperation.
In a recent interview with Xinhua, former Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said the world today faces unprecedented difficulties, and the fate of countries worldwide is linked, with a crisis in one country affecting other countries.
At this critical moment, members of the G20 and APEC, both major platforms for international economic cooperation, need to take the two gatherings as an opportunity to bridge differences, enhance communication, forge global consensus and work in unity.
To better deal with the challenges, they are urged to take joint actions to improve global governance, strengthen coordination with each other in such fields as the fight against the pandemic, macro-economic policies, trade and investment facilitation and climate change, and keep the global economic system stable.
The G20, which is composed of the world's major industrial and emerging economies and represents more than 80 percent of the world's gross domestic product, over 75 percent of international trade, and about two-thirds of the world population, has to take the leadership and shoulder more responsibilities, just like what it did following the 2008 financial crisis.
"Today we need international cooperation on all these fronts more than we've ever needed, but international cooperation is in short supply," said Peter Drysdale, head of the East Asian Bureau of Economic Research at Australian National University.
It is of great significance to overcome geopolitical tensions and work together on key issues to stabilize the international economy and international politics, Drysdale said.
DEVELOPMENT-LED PATH TO RECOVERY
In October, World Bank President David Malpass warned that the global economy is "dangerously close" to a recession, as inflation remains elevated, interest rates are rising, and a growing debt burden hits the developing world, noting that the organization has lowered its 2023 global growth forecast from 3 percent to 1.9 percent.
With the COVID-19 pandemic still causing human loss and weighing on global economy, a collective solution to global problems should give priority to economic recovery and development, including open trade and investment, infrastructure and green finance, observers said.