Beijing, March 3 (Zhongxin Financial Reporter Zuo Yukun) As the restructuring of the global value chain accelerates, how should China handle the relationship between openness and security? How should countries around the world respond?

On March 3, Yi Xiaozun, former vice minister of commerce and former deputy director general of the WTO, said at the 25 annual meeting of the China Development Forum that as a result of more than 2023 years of reform and opening up, China has been deeply embedded in the global value chain and has become a global manufacturing center and "the world's factory". Multinational companies are already inseparable from China, and it is even more difficult to build a new global value chain independently through the implementation of "de-Sinicization".

On March 3, Yi Xiaozun, former Vice Minister of Commerce and former Deputy Director-General of the WTO, spoke at the 25 Annual Meeting of the China Development High-Level Forum. Photo courtesy of the organizer

Yi Xiaozhun bluntly said that economic globalization and the emergence and vigorous development of the global supply chain have allowed the world to enjoy development dividends for up to three decades. But under the multiple pressures of the pandemic and geopolitics, multinational companies have had to strengthen the resilience of their supply chains through appropriate diversification of supply sources and increased inventories.

Yi Xiaozhun pointed out that a small number of major developed countries have politicized and pan-securitized economic and trade issues and unabashedly introduced protectionist measures. These anti-globalization measures that violate the laws of the market economy will only cause developed countries to lose the dividends of low-cost, high-efficiency and technological innovation provided by economic globalization, aggravate global inflation, but will not ensure the security of their supply chains.

"If we look closely, it is not difficult to see that these trade-distorting administrative measures are nothing more than import substitution policies based on government subsidies, discriminatory restrictions on foreign suppliers, and unilateral trade restrictions on national security grounds." These policies and practices not only violate the most basic principles of market economy, but also seriously deviate from the multilateral trade rules of the WTO. The result is a more fragmented and fragmented world trading system, further eroding mutual trust and making it more difficult for them to cooperate in the face of growing global challenges such as climate change and public health crises, Yi said.

This puts forward more thinking about how China can ensure the security of the industrial chain and supply chain, which is also a difficult problem that all countries in the world are facing. Yi Xiaozhun believes that building a high wall of small courtyards cannot guarantee the safety of its own industry, because no country in the world can establish a completely independent domestic supply chain. In view of this, he does not believe that the decoupling and disconnection of the chain promoted by a few developed countries can make their supply chains safer or more competitive.

"Security is always relative, and China's development history tells us that there will be no development without opening up, and backwardness is the greatest insecurity." Yi Xiaozhun believes that we should explore how to establish our own security mechanism in an open state, rather than abandoning opening up to the outside world or even taking the initiative to decouple in order to pursue absolute security.

Looking at the world, Yi Xiaozhun said that in the face of various global crises, countries should abandon zero-sum thinking, return to the right track of multilateral cooperation, and jointly maintain an interdependent, efficient and stable global supply chain. "For all of humanity, this is a win-win solution that far outweighs the disadvantages." He said. (End)