China is ready to contribute to the Doha round of talks on the World Trade Organization (WTO) and hopes its WTO member status as a developing nation will be recognized and supported, said Minister of Commerce Bo Xilai.
At his meeting with visiting European Union Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson in Beijing Thursday, Bo proposed that a mini-ministerial WTO meeting be held in China this July so that the Doha round of talks "could make substantial achievements."
Mandelson said the European Union (EU) fully accepted China's status and expects China to play a bigger role in boosting the new round of WTO talks.
During their three-hour meeting, both Bo and Mandelson expressed wishes of accelerating China-EU economic and trade development and exchanged views on issues such as trade integration of textile products and China's market economy status.
Bo said China has actively pushed forward the Doha round of WTO talks and that he hoped "all relevant parties would reach a consensus on focal issues."
He explained China's stance on agriculture, market access of non-farm produce, service trade, development problems and trade facilitation.
Bo said China is determined to defend the trade integration of textile products and will oppose any restrictive measures against China's textile products.
"Although the Uruguay round of talks required the trade integration of textile products to be realized within ten years, some of the world's major textile importers still impose quotas on most scarce textile products," Bo said.
To secure the stable development of global textile trade, he said, China has started taking measures to limit its massive exports.
Bo also urged the EU to recognize China's full market economy status.
Mandelson said the EU stands for the integration of textile products and does not hope to see any restrictive measures against China. He said the EU is ready to strengthen consultation with China on textile trade and hopes the issue of China's market economy status will be solved as early as possible.
The China-EU trade volume in 2004 was 177.28 billion US dollars, up 33.6 percent over 2003, when the EU overtook Japan and the United States to become China's largest trade partner. China is the EU's second largest trade partner. The EU is also China's largest technology supplier and fourth largest investor.
(Xinhua News Agency February 26, 2005)