Wang Yi: Promote the World Trade Organization (WTO) to Play a Greater Role in Global Economic Governance

On January 24, 2019 local time, when holding the 18th session of the consultation of the coordinators for the China-France Strategic Dialogue with Diplomatic Adviser to the President of France Philippe Étienne in Paris, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi stressed that the Chinese side sticks to multilateralism and supports the rules-based multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organization (WTO) at the core. The Chinese side is in favor of necessary reforms of the WTO, which aim to better adapt the organization to the development of the situation and enhance its authority and effectiveness. The following principles should be upheld in the process of reform: first, maintain the core values and fundamental principles of the WTO and maintain the direction of trade liberalization; second, adhere to the principles of consultation and consensus, and seek no exclusive "small cliques"; third, preserve the special and differential treatment for developing members while hoping that the French side will objectively view China's status as a developing country; and fourth, prioritize the breaking of the stalemate in the selection of WTO trade arbitration judges.

Wang Yi expressed that the Chinese side highly values the French side's clearly-reiterated stance on opposing unilateralism and advocating the maintenance of the multilateral trading system in today's talks. The Chinese side is ready to strengthen communication and cooperation with the French side and the European Union on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, jointly promote the multilateral trading system to keep pace with the times and promote the WTO to play a greater role in global economic governance.