BEIJING — China’s Ministry of Commerce said the country supported the reform of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on July 26.
“China is supportive of WTO reform, and hopes the reform will address the concerns of most members and reflect their needs,” Ministry of Commerce spokesperson Gao Feng said at a press conference, commenting on the trade deal made between the United States and the European Union (EU), which included agreement on WTO reform.
US President Donald Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker agreed to mitigate transatlantic trade tensions over Washington-launched tariffs on July 25.
“It’s of course a good thing to avoid a trade war. It’s not only good for the EU and the United States, but good for the whole world,” Gao said. “China will pay close attention to whether the deal will materialize.”
Gao said China hoped that the primary purpose of the WTO should not be changed and its fundamental principle not challenged through gradual reform. At the same time, the reform should strengthen the authoritativeness and leadership of the WTO, and consolidate the basic functions and role of free trade principle and multilateral trading system, to better promote global free trade and economic globalization.
“We should always stick to the overall framework of the multilateral trading system and uphold multilateral trade order,” Gao said, adding free trade arrangements among WTO members are helpful supplement and positive driving force for the multilateral trading system.
“China has always been an advocate for the construction of open, transparent and mutually beneficial regional free trade arrangements,” Gao said.
China holds a positive view on such arrangements as long as they are in line with WTO rules, beneficial for economic globalization and regional economic integration, as well as conducive to building a community with a shared future for mankind, Gao said.