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China offers alternative global leadership

By Stephen Ndegwa
Thursday, September 24th, 2020
President Xi Jinping. Photo/Courtesy
In summary

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations. Sadly, there will not be much fanfare as the world is currently gripped by the coronavirus pandemic. In the midst of this darkness, China has stepped forward in leading the world back to normalcy. 

As China’s President Xi Jinping noted in his virtual address to the general debate of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly via video on Tuesday, this is the time that the world must come together as one. 

China made historic contributions to winning the World Anti-Fascist War and supported the founding of the UN.

Today, the country is actively involved in the international fight against Covid-19, contributing its share to upholding global public health security. 

The world is battling the Covid-19 pandemic as it goes through profound changes never seen in a century. 

Yet, peace and development remain the underlying trend of the times, and people everywhere crave even more strongly for peace, development and win-win cooperation.

Covid-19 will not be the last crisis to confront humanity, so we must join hands and be prepared to meet even more global challenges.

As Xi noted in his address, the world needs to show concern for and accommodate the need of developing countries, especially African countries.

The international community needs to take timely and robust measures in such fields as debt relief and international assistance, ensure the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and help these countries overcome their difficulties.

Covid-19 reminds us that we are living in an interconnected global village with a common stake.

To pursue a beggar-thy-neighbour policy or just watch from the sidelines when others are in danger will eventually land one in the same trouble faced by others. 

China’s philosophy entails striking a proper balance between the government and balanced development that delivers benefit to people from all countries, sectors and backgrounds in an equitable way.

This demands the pursuance of open and inclusive development, and remaining committed to building an open world economy. 

The global governance system should adapt itself to evolving global political and economic dynamics, meet global challenges and embrace the underlying trend of peace, development and win-win cooperation.

It is natural for countries to have differences. What is important is to address them through dialogue and consultation.

The Paris Agreement on climate change charts the course for the world to transition to green and low-carbon development.

It outlines the minimum steps to be taken to protect the earth. China has promised to scale up its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions by adopting more vigorous policies and measures. 

This includes curbing carbon emissions before 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality before 2060.

However, all countries need to pursue innovative, coordinated, green and open development, and seize the historic opportunities presented by the new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation.

As the largest developing country in the world, China has shown commitment to peaceful, open, cooperative and common development, rather than engaging in a zero-sum game.

Instead of pursuing development in isolation, China aims to foster a new development paradigm with domestic circulation as the mainstay and domestic and international circulations reinforcing each other.

This will not only create more space for China’s economic development, but also add impetus to global economic recovery and growth. The writer is a communications expert and public policy analyst — [email protected]

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