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      18210244181 | 登錄 注冊
      發布時間:2022年04月24日     發布人: nanyuzi
      來源: 駐英國使館
      字號 簡體 繁體 打印

      New Starting Point and New Opportunities for Further Progress in China-UK Economic and Trade Relations



      Ambassador Zheng Zeguang Contributes an Article on the International Business Daily




      13 March 2022


      This year marks the 50th anniversary of ambassadorial diplomatic relations between China and the UK. The past 50 years have seen fruitful economic cooperation between the two countries which has brought tangible benefits to the two peoples. Last October, during a telephone conversation, President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Boris Johnson reached important understanding on growing the bilateral ties and enhancing cooperation between the two countries in all areas. They have charted the course for the development of the China-UK relationship. At the new historical starting point, China and the UK should keep to the major direction of dialogue and cooperation, focus on working together, handle differences properly and push for new and greater development of the economic partnership as well as the wider bilateral relations.



      China-UK economic cooperation has a solid foundation and strong resilience.



      In 2021, despite the recurring outbreaks of Covid-19 variants and the difficult recovery in world economic, China-UK economic cooperation bucked the trend to register growth. China remained the UK’s third largest trading partner and number one source of imported goods. Trade in goods between the two exceeded US$100 billion, and two-way FDI stock reached US$47.8 billion which was a nearly US$5 billion increase from the pre-pandemic level. Financial cooperation remained close. Offshore RMB clearing volume in London exceeded 60 trillion RMB yuan. The central banks of the two countries signed an agreement to renew the existing currency swap line for a further five-year period, with the total value standing at 350 billion, or 40 billion in sterling. Cooperation continued to deepen in a wide range of areas, including green and low-carbon development, R&D, high-end manufacturing and infrastructure. Chinese products are good value for money and play an important role in supporting UK’s pandemic response. Chinese businesses in the UK contributed to the country’s economic and social progress by providing employment and tax revenue. From the British side, export to and investment in China continued to grow. Over the past 10 years, British export to China grew four times faster than its export to other countries. In 2021, Britain saw 22% more investment going into China and attracted 246% more Chinese capital to the UK. These outcomes fully demonstrate the win-win nature of China-UK economic cooperation.



      China-UK economic cooperation covers a wide range of areas and enjoys huge potential.



      The economies of the two countries are highly complementary. China has stable and consistent policies and plans, a huge market, and strong R&D, innovation and manufacturing capabilities. It will continue to be a sustained and strong powerhouse for the economic recovery and prosperity in all countries and regions, including the UK. The British economy is in the post-industrial stage, with established strength in areas of financial services, and science and technology. The two countries can continue to deepen the cooperation in traditional areas, such as trade in goods, traditional finance, manufacturing and infrastructure, expand practical partnership in new areas, including health care, green technology, green finance, new energy vehicles, digital economy and creative industries, as well as explore ways to work together in third markets, so as to create more highlights in their cooperation.



      China-UK economic cooperation faces new opportunities.



      Under the strong leadership of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, China is striving towards the second centenary goal, that is, building a great modern socialist country in a comprehensive way. As China deepens the implementation of its 14th Five Year Plan, the country will focus on steadiness and quality of development. This means steady improvement in the quality and reasonable increase in the quantity of economic growth. The overall objective is common prosperity. To this end, China will remain committed to opening up wider at a high level. In particular, it will strive to align its economy with high-standard international rules, steadily expand institutional opening up in terms of rules, management and standards, foster a market-based, law-based and open business environment, implement national treatment for foreign companies, remain open as always to foreign investment, including that from the UK, and promote high-quality development of the cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative. The majority of countries and regions in the world, including the UK, are fully confident in China’s development and the opportunities that China will offer. In 2022, China and the UK will hold in due course some important events, such as the 11th Economic and Financial Dialogue, which will inject new impetus to the bilateral cooperation. China’s development has proved and will continue to show that as a partner in cooperation, China not only offers a stable policy environment and a huge market but also is reliable, ready to share and sustainable. At the new historical starting point, China will open its market wider to the world, which will create new opportunities for cooperation with all the countries, including the UK.



      China and the UK should join hands to open up new prospects for economic cooperation.



      Over the past 50 years since the establishment of ambassadorial diplomatic relations, the China-UK relationship has achieved historic progress despite ups and downs. History clearly shows that for China-UK relations to fare well, mutual trust is the foundation, understanding is the precondition, and proper management of differences is the key. We call on the UK side to foster a stable and favourable political environment for China-UK economic cooperation by transcending the Cold-War mentality, respecting the facts and reality, and renouncing the wrong perception that China is a “systemic competitor” or even a threat, and to provide a fair, just and non-discriminatory environment for Chinese businesses in the UK by upholding the spirit of free trade and the rules of the WTO.



      Against the current instabilities and uncertainties in the international situation, China-UK economic cooperation could work to boost world economic recovery, help address global challenges and bring benefits to the peoples of both countries. It is important that both sides uphold the spirit of mutual respect, openness and inclusiveness, and win-win cooperation, work together to enhance exchanges and communication in all sectors, improve mutual understanding between the peoples, seize the opportunities and resist disruptions. These efforts will help build up the positive energy in the China-UK relationship and promote steady and sustained progress in their economic ties.