The Chinese market will open to everyone, “not in a discriminatory fashion,” and “it’s up to every country to seize the opportunities,” World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General Roberto Azevedo said in an interview here.
After attending the opening ceremony of the first China International Import Expo (CIIE) on Monday, Azevedo told Xinhua that developing countries and less developed countries will certainly benefit from the expo while developed countries are also provided with good exposure at this event.
“We need countries to leverage their potential to help each other, to give more opportunities to businesses and for growth,” he said, explaining why he thinks that President Xi Jinping’s keynote speech at the inaugural ceremony is “very much welcomed.”
In the speech, Xi said that the expo “is China’s major initiative to still widen market access to the rest of the world.” He said that China’s imported goods and services are expected to exceed 30 trillion U.S. dollars and 10 trillion dollars, respectively, in the coming 15 years.
Noting the rising challenges of protectionism and unilateralism facing the global economy now, Azevedo said, “(what) we need today is not more borders but less borders.”
“Every time the global economy grows, it is because that trade is booming. It is because the integration is there and the borders are open. When we begin to close borders, that kind of growth and development are going to suffer,” he added.