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Development Initiative helps boost synergy among nations

By Kostas Gouliamos | China Daily Global | Updated: 2022-10-20 09:07
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The world is facing extraordinary challenges, most immediately the COVID-19 pandemic and its socioeconomic impacts. The pandemic, along with climate change, conflicts, slowing global economic growth, widening digital divides, rising hunger and structural inequalities among and within nations, is likely to continue to create stress fractures, unless new and vigorous practices are adopted to promote inclusive and sustainable development.

The recent accumulation of crises is threatening the development achievements that have been made in recent decades, and threatening to impede and postpone the imperative conversion to more inclusive sustainable development.

China, as the world's second-largest economy, with a GDP of $17.7 trillion and over 18 percent of global GDP, has a key role to play in international efforts to address these crises. Beijing's prominent initiatives have significant implications for the world's endeavors to realize fairer development and a green transition.

Within this framework, President Xi Jinping proposed the Global Development Initiative at the opening of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in September last year. It is an initiative that serves as an effective platform for achieving the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by supporting and promoting multilateral cooperation with a focus on greener and healthier global development. At the same time, it seeks to help all countries — but in particular developing countries — to respond effectively to the pandemic.

More than 100 nations support the Global Development Initiative, along with many international organizations, including the UN.At the same time, 60 countries have joined the Group of Friends of the GDI.

This group of friends is working in solidarity to boost synergies and pursue growth. Meanwhile, the ongoing 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China will chart the course for China's sustainable development. Under the leadership of the CPC, progressive goals are perceived and practical solutions such as the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Belt and Road Initiative have been presented.

The Chinese government is working responsibly with governments of other countries with the aim of making the Global Development Initiative a workable platform for people-centered development. In view of this, China is seeking to maximize the effects of its cooperation networks in such areas as cutting-edge technology, agriculture, digital education, energy, culture and climate actions.

Resulting from the initiative, the Ministerial Meeting of the Group of Friends of the Global Development Initiative was held in September. The meeting was chaired by State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and attended by high-level delegates of nearly 40 countries.

After the meeting, the participants issued a joint statement that further clarified the path and principles of the Global Development Initiative. Correspondingly, countries were encouraged to adopt more proactive roles in Global Development Initiative cooperation to tackle climate change and encourage sustainable development.

In addition, more than 40,000 training opportunities from China have been provided to the group of friends countries through over 1,000 capacity building programs. Moreover, in April, the China-Pacific Island Countries Climate Action Cooperation Center was unveiled in Liaocheng, Shandong province, through which the Chinese government is offering assistance within its capacity under the framework of South-South cooperation.

Clearly, China has been both a contributor to global development and a builder of world peace by establishing remarkable cooperation platforms and proposing various initiatives to promote shared development. The Chinese government is committed to true multilateralism and mutually beneficial partnerships.

Adhering to the strategic perspective of realizing a shared future for humankind, the Global Development Initiative promotes the transfer of knowledge to accelerate progress and the attainment of the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The author is a former rector of the European University Cyprus and an ordinary member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts.

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