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China's accession to the WTO

(Reform and Opening Up)

Updated:2018-10-29 |

China's accession to the WTO

China formally joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) and became its 143rd member on December 11, 2001. This was an event of vital importance in its course of reform and opening up.

The country had gone through a lengthy and complicated process of tough negotiations, from working toward re-admission to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) till its admission to the WTO. The Chinese government formally applied to GATT on July 10, 1986 to have its status as a contracting party restored, and in November 1995 the negotiation transitioned to China's accession to the WTO. The Working Party on China's Accession met for the first time in Geneva in March 1996, and on September 17, 2001 the Working Party held its 18th session to adopt all the legal documents on China's accession and also to complete its own historical mission.

Since its entry to the WTO, China has further integrated with and become an irreplaceable force in the international economy, while benefiting from globalization. "Mutually beneficial" is an accurate description of China's relationship with the rest of the world. China firmly supports multilateral trade systems. It will always be a responsible WTO member and make a positive contribution to multilateral trade systems.