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Asian countries should cooperate to resist impact of crisis

By Ji Peijuan (People's Daily)

16:36, October 09, 2011

Edited and Translated by People's Daily Online

Asian countries should strengthen unity, expand cooperation and work together to cope with potential risks in the world economy, which is a collective voice of the representatives of the 11th World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention have expressed a common voice. Many participants of the conference have put forward suggestions during the past two days about how to deal with the international economic crisis, particularly how to increase the capabilities of Asian countries to manage the risks.

Huang Mengfu, vice chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, said during the conference that China's peaceful development will provide the world with opportunities rather than threats and offer Chinese entrepreneurs a sound environment for their full development.

Hucheng, China's international trade representative and vice minister of commerce, stressed during his speech that each countries should cooperate and explore the path of common development in light of the uncertainties about the recovery of the world economy.

He said, "The recovery of the world economy is full of uncertainties, and each country faces different policy choices, some of which will likely dampen the development of other countries. Given the situation, should each country adopt different measures to address their own difficulties or cooperate and set the goals for common development and prosperity? I think that the answer should be the latter."

The representatives universally agreed that Asian countries have the capability to resist the impact of the international economic crisis to some extent. The key to the countries’ success in weathering the storm lies in accelerating the pace of economic transformation and strengthening their economic capacities by further expanding regional cooperation.

Malaysian Minister of Tourism Huang Yanyan stressed the economic transformation to the service industry in the Asia-Pacific region. She said that the Malaysian government has formulated a plan to increase the proportion of the service industry to its whole GDP to from 57 percent to 75 percent, reaching the levels of developed countries in Europe and America.

Huang said that given the uncertainties facing the European and U.S. economies, Asian countries should pay more attention to new business realms and opportunities to reduce the negative effects of existing risks. A crisis can sometimes translate into an opportunity. The debt crisis plaguing the United States and Europe may bring new opportunities for Asia;s development. She stressed that although tourism is regarded as a small industry, it is highly profitable. Asian countries should pay more attention to their tourism sectors.

Singapore;s Trade and Industry Minister Lim Hong Kiang said in a speech that all Southeast Asian nations witnessed significant economic growth in the first quarter of 2011, and most Asian countries saw a considerable economic slowdown in the second quarter. At present, the most important thing for Asian economies is to return to the basic principle of strengthening regional cooperation.

Lim said that as the European and U.S. debt crises may cause a global double-dip recession, ASEAN countries should enhance cooperation and give full play to each other;s advantages to ride out the potential recession. All countries in the region should enhance cooperation in multiple fields, such as sea, land, and air transportation as well as communications to ensure smooth flow of goods and people across borders. If all countries can get closer to each other, there will certainly be closer economic ties and more business opportunities. He stressed that all countries in the region will endure the potential recession if they continue to deepen cooperation on the basis of mutual benefit.

Singapore;s former Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew attended the closing ceremony of the 11th World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention on the evening of Sept. 7 and had a conversation with the businesspeople at the convention. The 12th World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention will be held by the China Overseas Chinese Entrepreneurs Association in Chengdu in 2013.

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