Hu puts forward growth proposal at APEC summit

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Chinese President Hu Jintao attends the 18th Economic Leaders' Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Yokohama, Japan, Nov.13, 2010. [Lan Hongguang/Xinhua]
Chinese President Hu Jintao attends the 18th Economic Leaders' Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Yokohama, Japan, Nov.13, 2010. [Lan Hongguang/Xinhua]

Chinese President Hu Jintao put forward a five-point proposal on Saturday to promote sound and fast economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

Hu made the proposal at the 18th Economic Leaders' Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, which opened in Yokohama, Japan Saturday afternoon.

Firstly, Hu asked the APEC economies to "promote balanced growth to create conditions for long-term economic development," saying they should seek balanced growth both within a member economy and among all member economies.

"We should increase input to help developing members achieve their full potential and narrow the North-South gap," Hu said.

He called on APEC members to move toward a more rational division of labor, a more balanced financial and trade structure, more efficient allocation of resources and more equitable sharing of benefits.

Efforts by APEC members in this aspect "will contribute to balanced and coordinated global economic growth," he said.

Secondly, President Hu said the APEC members should "advocate inclusive growth to boost the internal dynamism of economic development."

He called on all members to focus on economic development, uphold social equity and justice and adhere to the people-first principle so that all countries, regions and groups could benefit from economic globalization and development.

He urged the members to follow the guideline of prioritizing human resources development, implementing development strategies conducive to full employment, improving the quality and competence of the labor force and speeding up the building of a sustainable social security network.

"The aim is to get people involved in development, protect their interests and enable them to benefit from development," Hu said.

Thirdly, Hu called on the APEC members to "bolster sustainable growth to strive for long-term economic development."

"We should emphasize sustainable growth, which includes not only resource and environmental sustainability but also sustainability of fiscal, monetary, trade and industrial policies and the reduction of macroeconomic volatility and risks," Hu said.

"We should implement responsible macroeconomic policies and ensure medium- and long-term fiscal sustainability," he said.

Hu said the APEC economies should coordinate economic development, social development and environmental protection and move toward low-carbon growth.

"We should actively address the climate challenge, energetically develop the green economy and foster new sources of economic growth," Hu said.

He proposed that China hold the first APEC Forestry Ministerial Meeting to advance region-wide cooperation on forestry. He also called for closer cooperation on the APEC Low-Carbon Model Town Project to step up collaboration in conserving energy, reducing emissions and raising energy efficiency.

Fourthly, Hu said it was necessary to "encourage innovative growth to provide impetus for economic development."

Noting that innovation is a boost, as well as a guide, to development, he said the APEC economies should create an innovation-encouraging environment by improving the system of technological innovation and increasing input in research and development.

The president asked the APEC members to facilitate the cultivation and movement of innovative and high-skilled people, who could provide strong human capital and scientific and technological support for economic development, and promote a shift toward innovation-driven growth.

"Developed members of APEC should scale up technology transfer and help developing members build capacity for innovative growth," Hu said.

Fifthly, Hu said APEC members should work to "ensure secure growth to protect the results of economic development."

He called on the APEC members to work together to deepen exchanges and cooperation on counter-terrorism, disaster prevention and reduction, food security, energy and resources security and public health security.

He said policy coordination and dialogue, experience sharing and technical assistance on these non-traditional security threats could help create a secure, benign and convenient environment for regional economic and social development and people's livelihoods and safeguard the safety and well-being of the people in the region.

On Saturday morning, President Hu attended the APEC CEO Summit, at which he delivered a keynote speech on "emerging economies in the Asia-Pacific Region."

Following the first retreat session of the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting, President Hu also attended a dialogue with representatives of the APEC's business advisory body, the APEC Business Advisory Council, and exchanged with them views on an Asia-Pacific free trade zone, growth of small- and medium-sized enterprises, food security and energy security.

APEC is the premier forum for facilitating economic growth, cooperation, trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region.

Since its birth in 1989, APEC has grown to encompass 21 members, accounting for about 50 percent of the world's gross domestic product and 44 percent of its trade.

The 21 member economies include Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, China's Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, the United States and Vietnam.

The annual APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting is the top decision-making organ of the forum. This year's meeting has the theme of "Change and Action."

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