cars, enjoying more international products, traveling to more
countries and seeing "made in China" everywhere around the
world—all of these are great changes people experienced after
China's entry into the WTO in 2001.
This year marks
the 10th anniversary of China being a member of the WTO. In the
past decade, China's trade relations with other countries and its
role on the world stage have changed tremendously. As the Director
General of the WTO Pascal Lamy said, China's entry into the WTO
came with a win-win result.
period, China has fulfilled its promise to gradually reduce customs
tariffs on imports and revised domestic laws and regulations
conforming to WTO rules. China has imported commodities of $750
billion per year on average, which equates to creating over 14
million jobs for trade partners. Meanwhile, foreign enterprises in
China remitted profits of $261.7 billion in total, up 30 percent
annually on average.
After joining the
WTO, China enjoyed the most rapid and sound growth since the
foundation of the People's Republic of China, accomplishing the
transition to a giant economy. China's GDP increased to 40 trillion
yuan ($6.28 trillion) in 2010 from 11 trillion yuan ($1.73
trillion) in 2001, ranking second in the world. China's cargo trade
grew to nearly $3 trillion in 2010 from $509.8 billion in 2001,
making it the largest export country and the second largest import
country in the world.
economy status is a tough issue for China since it began to apply
for membership in the WTO. After entering the WTO, growing trade
disputes have added uncertainty to China's economic future. China
has encountered the most anti-dumping investigations for 16
consecutive years (1995-2010), and the most anti-subsidy
investigations for five consecutive years (2006-10).
China has been
making efforts to acquire a full market economy status. First, it
has deepened its reform, especially in the monopoly fields. It has
encouraged and supported the growth of the private sector, and has
gradually separated the operation from administration in the fields
such as petroleum, aviation, railways and telecommunication. The
prices of more than 98 percent of commodities are decided by
market. China has also reformed its financial sector and the
interest rate and exchange rate systems. Second, China has further
improved the opening-up structure. It has lowered tariffs and cut
non-tariff barriers in line with its WTO committment. It has fully
opened its automobile industry to the world, not only the
manufacture but also the service sector. Moreover, the Chinese
market in the distribution and IT sectors have developed better
than average. Third, China has lowered market access threshold, cut
market barriers and normalized market order, making efforts to
build a unified domestic market.
Up to now, many
countries have acknowledged China's market economy status. But the
United States, the EU and Japan have not recognized it yet.
According to WTO regulations, China will acquire market economy
status automatically in 2016 after China has participated in the
WTO for 15 years. It is a pragmatic choice to acknowledge China's
market economy status early, which will promote the cooperation and
partnership between China and other countries for mutual benefit
and common development. Definitely, it is a win-win option.