112 WTO members sign statement on investment facilitation negotiations

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Aerial photo taken on Dec. 5, 2021 shows the sunrise scenery of the Yangpu international container port at Yangpu economic development zone in south China's Hainan Province. [Photo/Xinhua]

China and 111 other members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on Friday signed a joint statement on investment facilitation, the Ministry of Commerce said on Saturday.

The 112 WTO members, including the EU, Russia and Japan, aim to complete the negotiations on the text concerning investment facilitation by the end of 2022, and push for a final multilateral agreement, the ministry said in a statement on its website.

The G20 Guiding Principles for Global Investment Policymaking were established at the 2016 G20 Hangzhou Summit. To translate the outcomes of the summit, China and various other WTO members launched discussions on investment facilitation in 2017. Formal negotiations began in 2020, with Chile currently serving as coordinator.

Investment facilitation is about improving investment policy transparency on a global scale, simplifying and accelerating investment approval procedures, and promoting international cooperation. So far, participating parties have reached a preliminary consensus on the framework and main rules of the agreement.

Once the agreement is reached, it will create a more transparent, stable and predictable environment for global investors and promote the development of global investment and trade. It will also help Chinese enterprises globalize in a more efficient manner, said Zhou Nianli, a professor at the University of International Business and Economics.

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