In Beijing, on the evening of June 24, 2022, Chinese President Xi Jinping chaired the High-Level Dialogue on Global Development in virtual format and expressed his views.

The following Presidents were connected: Abdelmadjid Tebboune (Algeria), Alberto Fernández (Argentina), Abdel Fattah El-Sisi (Egypt), Joko Widodo (Indonesia), Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi (Iran), Kassym-Jomart Tokayev (Kazakhstan), Vladimir Putin (Russia), Macky Sall (Senegal), Cyril Ramaphosa (Republic of South Africa), Shavkat Mirziyoyev (Uzbekistan), as well as Brazilian Vice President Hamilton Mourão, and Prime Ministers Hun Sen (Cambodia), Abiy Ahmed Ali (Ethiopia), Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama (Fiji), Narendra Modi (India), Ismail Sabri Yaakob (Malaysia), Prayut Chan-o-cha (Thailand).

Focusing on the topic “Promoting a Global Development Partnership for the New Era for jointly implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” leaders from all countries had an in-depth exchange of views on important issues such as strengthening international development cooperation and stepping up the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. They discussed ways to promote development cooperation and reached broad and important common understandings.

President Xi Jinping announced the opening of the Dialogue. The leaders of the participating countries watched a video clip to recall the important moments of cooperation between emerging markets and developing countries in recent years.

President Xi Jinping delivered the speech entitled “Forging High-Quality Partnerships for a New Era of Global Development”.

He emphasised that development is a timeless issue for humanity. Only through continuous development can people’s dreams for a better life and social stability come true. Over the years, developing countries have worked unremittingly to explore development paths suited to their national realities and to pursue economic and social development. Such efforts have produced remarkable outcomes. Emerging markets and developing countries currently account for half of the world’s economy and notable progress has been made in science and technology, education, social development, culture and many other areas.  

Countries have met at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is eroding decades of gains in global development; the implementation of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is encountering difficulties; the North-South divide continues to widen and crises are emerging in food and energy security. At the same time, people in all countries are keener about pursuing peace, development and cooperation; emerging markets and developing countries are more resolved to seek strength through unity, and the new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation is bringing greater opportunities to countries around the world.

President Xi Jinping underlined that this is an era rife with challenges, but it is also an age full of hope. There is a need to get a good grasp of the overarching development trend in the world; to firm up confidence and act in concert and with great motivation to promote global development and foster a development paradigm featuring benefits for all, balance, coordination, inclusiveness, win-win cooperation and common prosperity.

Firstly, international consensus on promoting development need to be jointly built. Only when people all over the world live better lives can prosperity be sustained, security safeguarded and human rights solidly grounded. It is important to put development front and centre on the international agenda in view of fully delivering on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and building political consensus to ensure that everyone values development and all countries pursue cooperation together.

Secondly, it is crucial to jointly create an enabling international environment for development. If protectionist measures continue, anyone attempting to form exclusive blocs will end up isolating themselves. Maximum sanctions serve no one’s interest, and decoupling and supply disruption practices are neither feasible nor sustainable. It is important to pursue development in real earnest and promote it in concert; to build an open world economy and shape a more just and equitable global governance system and institutional environment.

Thirdly, it is useful to jointly promote new drivers for global development. It is important to promote science, technology and institutional innovation; to speed up technology transfer and knowledge sharing; to boost the development of modern industries; to bridge the digital divide, and accelerate the low-carbon transition, with a view to achieving stronger, greener and healthier global development.

Fourthly, we need to jointly forge a global development partnership. Only by working together can we accomplish great things with a far-reaching impact. Developed countries need to fulfil their obligations; developing countries need to deepen cooperation, and the North and the South need to work in the same direction to forge a united, equal, balanced and inclusive global development partnership. In this process, no country or individual should be left behind. It is important that we support the United Nations in steering and coordinating global development cooperation, and encourage business communities, social groups, media and think tanks to take part in such cooperation.

President Xi emphasised that the People’s Republic of China has always been a member of the big family of developing countries. China will take pragmatic steps to provide continued support to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The People’s Republic of China will allocate more resources for global development cooperation. It will upgrade the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund into a Global Development Cooperation Fund. It will also increase its contribution to the UN Trust Fund for Peace and Development. Such efforts will further support cooperation within the Global Development Initiative (GDI).

China will work with all parties to advance cooperation in priority areas, and mobilise resources for development to deepen global cooperation on poverty reduction and eradication. It will build capacity for food production and supply, and promote clean energy partnerships. It will step up innovation, research and development, and joint production of vaccines. It will work on the conservation and sustainable use of land and marine ecology, and enhance literacy and citizens’ skills. It will transform and upgrade the path to industrialisation at a faster pace, and enhance connectivity in the digital age to give new momentum to all countries’ development. China will set up a platform for sharing experience and knowledge on international development, as well as a global development promotion centre and a global knowledge network for development to exchange governance experiences. It will host a global forum on youth development and take part in the launch of a global action plan on youth development, in a bid to pool as much strength as possible for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

President Xi Jinping emphasised that, as an ancient Chinese saying goes – “With one heart and one mind, we can accomplish everything we aspire for” -. the People’ Republic of China will firm up confidence, and stride forward in pursuit of a high-quality partnership to usher in a new era of prosperity and development in which there are no countries in charge, and their colonies in obedience.

The personalities participating in the Dialogue made their own comments. They thanked the People’s Republic of China for initiating and hosting this high-level Dialogue on global development and highlighted President Xi’s insights on global development cooperation.

Emerging markets and developing countries are a crucial force in building a fairer and more balanced international order and promoting peace, security, equality and development. They need to strengthen solidarity and cooperation, and work with the international community to bring the issue of development to the fore so as to build a better world that meets the needs and expectations of most developing countries. This Dialogue has helped the parties to reach new understandings on international development cooperation; to safeguard the developing countries’ common interests, and to give new momentum for maintaining world peace and promoting common development.

The Heads of State and Government participating in the Dialogue agreed that development is the foundation of security. They said that China’s initiatives address the concerns and meet the needs of developing countries, and they support forging international consensus; mobilising resources for development; and accelerating the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. They hoped to step up cooperation in several areas, including epidemic prevention and control, food safety and energy security.

The parties also expressed serious concerns about the negative impact and spillover of unilateral sanctions and the heavy toll paid by developing countries, which are more vulnerable than rich countries, and – as colonies – are in the grip of Western imperialism. The parties emphasised the need to practise true multilateralism, uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, support equity and justice, and advance reforms in the global governance system.

They argued that emerging markets and developing countries should coordinate and cooperate to the best of their abilities; strive for greater representation and voice in international affairs; ensure the continued sound functioning of the international economic and financial system; and work for the ongoing recovery and sustainable development of the world economy.

The BRICS and developing countries participating in the Dialogue fully expressed their political consensus on global development and the implementation of appropriate measures for practical cooperation in the priority areas under China’s Global Development Initiative (GDI).

Giancarlo Elia Valori