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The Future of Globalization

Time:2016-12-07 09:56:57    Views:681118    Origin:Boao Forum for Asia

——A Foreword for the Boao Forum for AsiaMelbourne Conference

Globalization now faces unprecedented challenges.

There is no denying that trade and investment as two major economic engines has played a critical role in boosting world economic growth and improving people’s wellbeing over the past few decades. On the other hand, there has been constant criticism of and opposition to globalization—a trend that seems to be intensifying. In the US—the leading champion of globalization, public negative perception has even caused a direct impact on its politics and presidential election.

The European Union (EU) was once hailed as a benchmark of economic integration. From politics to diplomacy, economy and currency, EU was once a role model in terms of depth and breadth of economic integration. However, as represented by Greece’s debt crisis and Brexit, European integration effort has suffered a significant setback. The cloud of disintegration is still hovering over the Eurozone.

Global trade has been lagging behind world economic growth for consecutive years and the major powerhouses that had been driving the world economy for decades are now decelerating. Multilateral trade and regional frameworks such as the WTO, TPP and NAFTA now all face the risk of reversal.

However, we have also seen optimistic changes.

The “innovative, invigorated, interconnected and inclusive” approach to the world economy proposed at the G20 Summit that just drew down its curtain in Hangzhou has become the consensus of the leaders of major economies, including developing countries. As the host country, China has mapped out a new globalization path, which is open, innovative, mutually beneficial and inclusive.

As a living example of this new path, the “One Belt, One Road” initiative is committed to promoting regional cooperation at greater depth and breadth by aligning China’s strengths in development practices, management expertise, foreign exchange reserves, technology and equipment with the development goals of the countries along the Belt and the Road. The initiative aims to create an open, inclusiveand balanced regional economic cooperation framework that facilitates the free flow of economic factors, efficient resource allocation and deep market integration.

Only by following the open, inclusive and balanced approach can we address “deglobalization”. In fact, globalization can never be sustained without including regions and groups that have been ostracized or marginalized by globalization.

The rise of new technology alongside the new economy has presented opportunities for a more inclusive globalization. Till today, globalization is a process more about multinational companies, in which large companies are the biggest beneficiaries. The advent of the Internet and online shopping platforms has greatly reduced barriers to global trade, presenting possibilities for small and medium-sized companies to be part of global trade and a countless number of them are expected to become new players in world trade.

The rise of emerging markets as a new driver of globalization has also profoundly transformed the landscape of world trade and investment. The year of 2015 is a milestone, when developing countries replaced advanced economies as the main source of FDI in the world; emerging economies such as China also shifted from a net FDI recipient to a major source of FDI. 

Despite the fact that globalization has been impeded by challenges, it also faces new possibilities and opportunities.

It is in this context that the Boao Forum for Asia will convene the conference themed with “The Future of Globalization” in Melbourne in collaboration with the Government of Victoria, Australia from December 7 to 8, 2016. The conference will be a prominent gathering of over 300 political, business and academic leaders from a dozen Asian and emerging economies, who will collectively explore the prospects and new drivers of globalization. Issues to be addressed will include global, regional and bilateral trade frameworks such as the WTO, RCEP, TPP and FTA, as well as trade, investment, E-commerce and commodities.

The opening ceremony and sessions will be graced by the presence of ZengPeiyan, former Vice Premier of China; Daniel Andrews, Premier of Victoria State, Australia; Greg Hunt, Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Australia; Bob Hawke, former Prime Minister of Australia; Jenny Shipley, former Prime Minister of New Zealand; Chen Deming, former Minister of Commerce, China; and Wu Xinxiong, former Director General of National Energy Administration, China.

Business leaders who will participate in this conference include: Ding Xuedong, Chairman and CEO of China Investment Corporation; Ahmed Fahour, CEO of Australia Post; Li Ruogu, former Chairman of China Eximbank; XuZongxiang, Vice President of CRRC Group; Donald Maguachie, Chairman of AACo; Wu Xiaohui, CEO of Anbang Insurance Group Co., Ltd.; KusumoMartanto, CEO of Blibli; Jiao Jian, Chairman of China Minmetals Non-ferrous Metals Co., Ltd.; Frank Lowy, Chairman of Westfield Group; XueFeng, General Manager of CEFC Natural Gas (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.; and Andrew Forrest, Chairman of Fortescue Metals Group.

The conference will also be attended by some leading scholars, such as Ross Garnaut, Professor of Economics at the Australian National University; Zhang Dawei, Deputy Director General of China Center for International Economic Exchange; and SudheendraKulkarni, Chairman of Observer Research Foundation Mumbai.

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