Make trade, not war

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    ONCE again, Chinese President Xi Jinping conveyed in no uncertain terms China’s visionary message to the world with the theme “New Era, Shared Future”.

    The occasion was the opening of the Second China International Import Exhibition (CIIE) in Shanghai which ended yesterday.

    New Era, through the CIIE, is the package of economic measures this country is taking to stimulate and sustain growth of the global economy. China intends to shift to a consumer economy and pledged to import up to $ 30-trillion in goods and $ 10-trillion in services in the next 15-years.

    The consequence of that stimulus is the energizing of the global economic system, from the East to the West, from the North to the South, in every continent, for continued productivity and trade expansion delivering prosperity and thereby peace and security for all.

    The Philippines’ participation in the CIIE 2019 is most welcome by other participants, especially in China and the Asean member-nations, and may be considered as strongly successful. China provides the Philippines now of its No. 1 tourist arrivals, aside from huge purchases of fruits and farm products.

    President Duterte is being proven right for taking the bold and wise step to engage with China and open to the fullest the trade and economic relations. Despite the regular distractions from elements that seek to disrupt this fruitful and immensely beneficial engagement, there is clearly no turning back.

    The Philippines gladly had its share of exports in the reported $50-billion worth of trade deals close during the Second CIIE in just five days of the exhibition. The event demonstrates the consistency and durability of China’s policies when they are made and announced, a reliability the uncertain world can bank on.

    Adding to this year’s credibility is the attendance of the first major Western leader, French President Emmanuel Macron, after a period of ambiguity influenced by US trade war calls to “decouple” from China and break the trade impasse between the European Union and China.

    Macron’s presence leaves the US trade war more isolated than ever as all roads today seem to lead to China’s consumer economy. Macron saw the truth in Xi’s promise to “help friends from around the world to seize opportunities presented by China’s development… for shared prosperity and progress.”

    Trade and not war is the call of the times.

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