IMF chief lauds China’s accomplishments in building ‘bridges’ to shared prosperity

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SHANGHAI: International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde lauded China’s accomplishments in building “bridges” for common prosperity with opening up and reform efforts.
In her keynote remarks at the opening ceremony for the week-long first China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai, Lagarde associated the Lupu Bridge she crossed the previous night in the coastal city with three other “bridges” that China has either constructed or is currently underway.
The first, according to Lagarde, was the “bridge to the world” that China started to build 40 years ago “by opening its economy and by kickstarting reforms that have changed the lives and prospects of hundreds of millions of people—here and and beyond China”.
The chief furthered that by transforming itself—through trade, hard work, and learning from others—China has also helped to transform the global economy. Progress in this country has played a significant role in boosting productivity, innovation and living standards in countries around the world.
The second one, the head said, is a “bridge to prosperity” China is building underway by rebalancing its economy towards consumption-led growth, rather than export- and investment-led growth.
In the first three quarters of this year, consumption contributed 78 percent to China’s GDP growth, up from 50 percent only 5 years ago, she expounded.
“This transition—which is symbolized by the China International Import Expo—is good for China, especially in terms of rising standards of living for the Chinese people, and good for the world, including all those who see China as a vital and vibrant market for their goods and services,” the chief illustrated.
Bridge number three is a “bridge to the future” China is constructing by harnessing the power of international cooperation, especially on trade, she pointed out.
“On behalf of the IMF, I have called on all countries to de-escalate and resolve the current trade disputes and to fix the global trade system, not destroy it. To achieve these goals, we need more international cooperation, not less—and that goes well beyond economics,” Lagarde said.
Trade, according to the managing director, has the capacity to boost innovation, foster not only prosperity but also peace within countries and among nations.
“So in Shanghai, the city of 12 bridges, let us work together to build the bridge— to peace, to a prosperous future, here in Shanghai and across the world,” she appealed at last.

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