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China shares the value of prioritizing development

By Zhong Sheng (People's Daily)    09:48, September 29, 2019

"We need more investment, more political action, more priority for a fair globalization”, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a recent interview.

The UN chief made the remarks as the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Summit opened at the UN headquarters in New York on Sept. 24.

The General Debate of the UN General Assembly kicked off on the same day, with the theme of "Galvanizing multilateral efforts for poverty eradication, quality education, climate action and inclusion".

Development is the eternal theme of human society. Four years ago, the UN Sustainable Development Summit adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, opening a new chapter in global development cooperation.

It is a common responsibility of all countries to work together to realize the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development set by the UN. No country should be left behind.

While the world is confronted with numerous challenges and difficulties, development serves as a good method for problem solving. As global development is threatened by unilateralism and protectionism, how to effectively guarantee the right of all countries to develop and ensure that development benefits more people is a major test facing the world.

To achieve the sustainable development goals, it is imperative to firmly support multilateralism and the core role of the UN in the international system. As economic globalization deepens, countries are in a community of shared future.

In recent years, the rise of the refugee issue, climate change and terrorism has made people deeply aware of the "butterfly effect" caused by global development inequality. In the face of global problems, countries must galvanize global efforts and come up with global solutions.

Only by upholding multilateralism and deepening global partnership for development can all nations achieve the sustainable development goals. Any attempt to stay immune and ignore the development rights of other countries while pursuing one's own development will ultimately harm the common development of the world.

To achieve the sustainable development goals, countries should continue to explore development paths suited to their national conditions. Four years ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping set forth a course of equitable, open, all-round and innovation-driven development at the UN development summits.

The Chinese president proposed to build up capacity for development, improve the international environment for development, update the partnership for development and strengthen the coordination mechanisms for development at the summits.

The world can see that China is committed to the people-centered development concept featuring innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development, making every effort to achieve high-quality development. The Chinese model has provided important experiences for sustainable development of the world.

China makes its biggest contribution to global development by managing its own affairs well and enabling 1.4 billion people to live a happy life. From providing adequate food and clothing to its people, to basically becoming a moderately prosperous society, and then to setting the goal of completing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects, China has always given top priority to development in the past 70 years since the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

China lifts the largest number of people out of poverty in the world. It is also the first developing country to meet the UN's Millennium Development Goals target of reducing the population living in poverty by half ahead of the 2015 deadline, contributing over 70% to global poverty reduction.

After eradicating absolute poverty next year, China is expected to achieve the first sustainable development goal 10 years ahead of schedule and being recognized by the UN as the global leader in achieving SDG goals.

China is committed to green development and is fulfilling ahead of schedule the commitments made in the Paris Agreement.

China was the source of a quarter of the global increase in green leaf area from 2000 to 2017. Stephen Roach, a senior research fellow at Yale University, believes that China's sustainable development strategy is a global example as it shifts the economic development model and the focus from quantity to quality.

The year 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, and the world has seen China embark on a new development journey.

The world dream depicted by the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is closely linked to the Chinese dream of national rejuvenation. This opens a shining chapter as China and the world shares the value of prioritizing development.

(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People's Daily to express its views on foreign policy.)

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

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