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China gives more weight to the quality of growth: ESCAP report

(People's Daily Online)    16:52, July 16, 2019

China has become the largest economy in the Asia-Pacific region over the last four decades, boasting outstanding economic development in terms of pace and scale, according to a specialized agency of the United Nations.

On July 8, the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) posted a blog titled "Towards a sustainable future: the case of China's economic transformation" on its official website, explaining China's example of balancing economic growth with social inclusiveness and environmental sustainability.

New policies and measures show that China is giving more weight to the quality of growth, the blog noted.

China pursues a holistic approach to structural reform that achieves innovative, inclusive, and sustainable development growth paths simultaneously. Under this scenario, the country could maintain relatively high rates of economic growth, the report noted.

"China is giving more weight to the quality of economic growth than growth speed," said Tharakorn Wusatirakul, deputy director of the Thai-Chinese Strategic Research Center of the National Research Council of Thailand.

China seized opportunities brought by the fourth industrial revolution, and made great efforts to drive structural reform, which will bring a positive influence to Southeast Asian nations, especially in regards to trade and investment, Wusatirakul said.

In the blog, the ESCAP found that China had taken serious steps to curb pollution while speeding up the transition to clean energy. It aims to get 20 percent of its energy from renewables by 2030.

China is sending a positive message on environmental protection by reducing reliance on coal power and developing clean energies, said Jianyu Zhang, vice president of the China Program under the US-based Environmental Defense Fund.

"Scenarios on China's potential policy paths towards a sustainable future shed some light for other developing countries," quoting the ESCAP blog.

China has made remarkable achievements in recent years in innovation, inclusiveness and green development, said Zhimin Tang, Dean of the International College and Director of China ASEAN Studies at Panyapiwat Institute of Management in Thailand.

China's successful experience in development is worth learning from for countries in Southeast Asia, where governance capacity, infrastructure and how to get farmers as well as medium and small-sized companies involved in markets are major bottlenecks for sustainable development, Tang noted.

It's important and urgent for policymakers to switch mindsets to prioritize policies that support people and the planet, the ESCAP noted.

"China is transforming from a world factory to a global center of technology," said Wusatirakul. "Its development is inspiring Southeast Asian countries and setting an example for us."

It's the second time that the ESCAP has published a blog focusing on China's economic transformation.

Earlier in March, a report introducing China's economic impact on Asia and the Pacific region was published on the official website.

In the previous report, it's noted that China's embrace of an innovative, inclusive and sustainable growth path could bring significant benefits to its trading partners, and the net welfare gain for other countries in the region is estimated at $349 billion by 2030.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Bianji, Hongyu)

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