An Asian Development Bank (ADB) specialist on Wednesday claimed China's accession to the World Trade Organization was significant to the global and regional economy with far-reaching effects on regional finance and trade.
Addressing a financial seminar during the 35th Annual Meeting of the ADB's Board of Governors Wednesday, David Roland-Holst, visiting scholar of the ADB Institute, said that China's WTO membership had brought far more opportunities than challenges to entrepreneurs and policy-makers in East Asia.
By 2020, an ADB Institute study reveals, China will become the largest trader in East Asia and replace the United States as the largest trade partner of Japan. The United States and Japan, it says, will become China's largest destination markets and sources of imports respectively.
Thanks to its own large economic scale, China would drive regional trade growth, said Holst, expressing belief that East Asia as a whole would benefit from it.
China's long-term and fast economic growth would undoubtedly open up more markets for domestic and overseas products, a rosy outlook for East Asia's exports, he explained.
Holst predicted that China would have considerable trade deficits with other East Asian economies in the future, but favorable balances with other parts of the world.
China would rely more on imports of primary products, food and energy products in particular, he said.
Meanwhile, Holst predicted that China would continue to rely on imports of capital and technology-intensive products in the foreseeable future, restrained by its infrastructure and a lack of capital.
(People's Daily May 9, 2002)