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A vital diplomatic trip to boost international cooperation
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By Yang Zhiwang

Chinese President Hu Jintao left for New York Monday to attend a string of the United Nations' meetings and then will travel on to the eastern US city of Pittsburgh for the G20 summit.

The trip, during which Hu will expound China's opinions and proposals on big global challenges such as climate change, nuclear disarmament and the financial crisis, is a new vital diplomatic move taken by the Chinese leader this year to boost international cooperation.

The five-day trip has a packed agenda. During his stay in New York, Hu is due to participate in the UN Climate Change Summit, the high-level debate of the UN General Assembly, and the UN Security Council Summit on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament.

It will be the first time that a Chinese head of state attends so many UN summits during a single visit since the restoration of China's legitimate seat at the United Nations in 1971, according to Liu Zhenmin, China's deputy permanent representative to the world body.

This visit, on the eve of the 60th anniversary of the founding of New China, attests the great importance China attaches to multilateralism and the country's active attitude toward international cooperation, he said in a recent briefing to Chinese media.

"It manifests the fact that China has already become an indispensable part of global efforts to resolve major international issues, and that the international community and the United Nations attach great importance to China's international standing and role," he said.

Based on Tuesday's briefing made by Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei, observers here say "mutual benefit", "win-win situation", "common development" and "international cooperation" are expected to be among the key words President Hu will use in his speeches at these multilateral meetings.

Climate change is seen as one of the greatest threats facing the planet. At the climate change summit on Tuesday, President Hu is expected to call for closer international cooperation in meeting the challenge, elaborate on China's efforts in this aspect, and unveil the new steps China will take.

The summit, the largest ever of its kind, is to be convened by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a bid to ensure a success at the UN Copenhagen conference in December, which will attempt to clinch a post-Kyoto deal on climate change.

The negotiations on the new climate deal have so far made little progress.

On Sept. 23, President Hu will deliver a speech at the annual high-level debate of the UN General Assembly, which will bring together leaders from more than 140 UN member states.

In his speech, Hu is expected to expound on China's views on the current international situation and major global issues, and outline China's ideas on how to maintain world peace, boost common development, promote mutual benefit and seek harmonious co-existence.

On the following day, at the invitation of US President Barack Obama, whose country holds the Security Council's presidency for September, Hu will join leaders of the other 14 council member states to discuss nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.

This will be the first-ever Security Council summit dedicated to the issues of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.

At the debate, President Hu will introduce China's ideas on realizing common security through a win-win approach. He will also put forward China's propositions on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, peaceful use of nuclear power, and nuclear security.

As the global financial crisis is still plaguing the world economy, Hu and leaders of other G20 member nations will gather in Pittsburgh on Sept. 24-25, to follow up the group's two previous summits in Washington and London.

Thanks to stimulus plans adopted by world governments, the global economy has showed some signs of recovery, but the recovery is far from being stable.

At the gathering in Pittsburgh, Hu will offer China's views on how to bolster the world economic recovery, reform the international financial system and correct the imbalance in development across the globe.

This summit is expected to focus on the reform of the International Monetary Fund's governance structure and an increase of its capital as well as the reform of international financial supervisory systems.

According to Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He, China hopes the meeting will produce consensus on further strengthening coordination on macro-economic policies, give a greater say and representation to developing countries and emerging economies, boost common development and adopt a clear position against trade protectionism.

This flurry of international meetings highlight the attention the international community pays to the pressing challenges facing the world. Global challenges call for global response, global cooperation and the involvement of every member of the international community.

Either as the world's largest developing country or a major emerging economy or a permanent member of the UN Security Council, China is showing its willingness to join the global efforts to overcome these formidable challenges.

The opinions and proposals President Hu is going to share with other world leaders are undoubtedly valuable input for addressing these challenges and will help augment international cooperation in this regard.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has already expressed his expectations of China's contribution at these summits.

"We have so many challenging issues in the history of the United Nations, we have multiple crises like climate change, the financial and economic crisis, (and) Millennium Development Goals," he told Xinhua last week.

"We have to address all of these global issues in close coordination and strong support of whole member states," the UN chief said. "I count on a strong contribution and commitment of (the) Chinese delegation headed by President Hu Jintao," he said.

(Xinhua News Agency September 21, 2009)

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