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 中美大使激辩发展中国家待遇和市场导向条件 Debates Between China-US Ambassadors on S&D Treatment of Developing Members and Market-Oriented Conditions
Category:International Legal News  
Subject:International relations   ; Macro-economy   ; Unfair competition   ; Market concentration  
Source:haiwainet
Publish Date:10-16-2020
 

关于发展中国家特殊与差别待遇
谢伊大使发言
在昨天的团长会上,我谈及了世贸组织谈判功能瘫痪的问题。美方认为,导致出现这一问题的原因是复杂多样的,包括:
上诉机构越权,导致很多成员不再热衷于谈判,而是通过诉讼获取其想要的结果;
许多成员,尤其是一些主要成员的政策长期缺乏透明度,扭曲了我们对重要议题的理解,破坏了谈判的基础;以及
部分成员不合理地自动获得了全面的特殊与差别待遇,导致谈判雄心水平过低,无法达成谈判成果。如果主要成员通过使用特殊与差别待遇而免于作出有意义的出价,那么成员们将无法在谈判中进行利益交换或建立联盟。
在与成员们讨论我们的特殊与差别待遇提案时,我们听到了三种批评声音。
第一,有些先进的、富有的或者有影响力的成员声称他们享有全面特殊与差别待遇的权利是自动的、永久的且神圣不可侵犯的。我们不同意。我们对享有特殊与差别待遇资格的判定方式应能够且必须与时俱进地反映当前贸易和发展的现实。
第二,某些成员提出不同的解决方案,即“逐案处理”的方式,要求每个成员在遵守纪律过程中根据他们的能力做出最大贡献。但是以往的经验,也就是多哈回合谈判,告诉我们当某些成员不愿意承担与其全球经济地位相称的义务时,这种方式并不奏效。
一些成员指出《贸易便利化协定》是用“逐案处理”方式提供特殊与差别待遇的成功案例,但其实该协定并非未来可直接套用的模式。因为在《贸易便利化协定》项下,如果其他成员全面实施了协定,而某个成员没有实施,这个成员有可能丧失竞争力。而大多数贸易协定的运作机制并非如此,一个成员可能认为如果其他成员全面履行了义务,而自己没有全面履约,反而会更加有利。
第三,部分成员说试图在成员中创设分类十分荒唐。这是个很奇怪的批评,因为分类事实上已经存在。现在已有三类成员,第一类是必须履行所有义务的成员;第二类是最不发达国家,他们享有更多的灵活性;第三类是成员中的大多数(大约有90个),他们自称是发展中成员,享有全面的特殊与差别待遇。
所以讨论的起点并不是分类,而是我们应该如何处理最后这一类中相互之间差异很大的成员。这些成员各不相同,需求也不尽一致。其中经济上更为发达的国家显然有能力通过谈判获得其所需要的灵活性,而不应再享受全面的特殊与差别待遇。
举个例子来说,中国全球货物出口是按照联合国分类的49个最不发达国家出口总和的14倍。中国经济总量是这49个最不发达国家经济总量的11倍还多。中国人均收入是最不发达国家平均水平的5倍,而1995年中国的人均收入还在最不发达国家平均收入水平以内的900美元,这无疑是个显著的发展成就。
中国已经在7月份的总理事会上承认其与贝宁、利比里亚情况不同。认识到自己不应该享受与最不发达成员相同的灵活性,这点是很好的。但这是否意味着中国认为自己与巴基斯坦或肯尼亚的情况相同呢?因为今天,中国享有与这两个国家以及其他低收入国家相同的全面的特殊与差别待遇。
1995年中国人均收入低于肯尼亚近20%,比巴基斯坦低25%还多。而现在,中国人均收入几乎是肯尼亚的4倍,比巴基斯坦的3倍还多。
如果不能将世贸组织中最先进、富有或有影响力的成员与最不发达国家和其他成员区分开来,将会减损特殊与差别待遇对最有需求的成员的价值,也会损害我们达成新协定的能力,从而无法为世贸组织中最贫穷的、融入全球贸易体制程度最低的成员提供更多的机会。
特殊与差别待遇议题以及相应的改革需求不会消失,我们期待与成员继续进行探讨。
张向晨大使发言
感谢主席先生。
我多次讲过,就发展中国家的分类标准进行辩论毫无意义,因为这本身就是系统性和方向性的错误。发展是世贸组织的一项重要目标,也是吸引如此多成员加入这个组织的一个重要原因。作为成员,我们应将精力集中在如何确保使发展这个理念落到实处。
具体而言,我们应共同探讨如何使现有的特殊与差别待遇条款得到有效实施,并在渔业补贴等具体谈判中向有需要的发展中成员提供有意义的特殊与差别待遇。对于现有的特殊与差别待遇条款,应确保有特殊需要的发展中成员真正从中受益并全面融入多边贸易体制。
主席先生,我们做了一个初步统计,在现行16个WTO协定155个特殊与差别待遇条款中,至少有105条过于宽泛而不具可操作性,占比高达67.7%;剩余50条中,有至少25条为过渡期或技术援助条款。也就是说,现有协定中直接关乎成员权利和义务的特殊与差别待遇条款(25条)仅占全部条款的16.1%。应当说绝大部分条款只能是画饼充饥,但却被一些成员描绘成无所不能的空白支票。
使特殊与差别待遇条款更加“精确、有效、可操作”是成员的长期共识,也是世贸组织一揽子协定的承诺。这也正是发展中国家要求讨论200多项“执行议题”,以解决乌拉圭回合遗留的规则不平衡问题的初衷,G90成员基于此提交了提案。在这个问题上,我完全赞成南非大使刚刚的发言。事实上,回顾过去20年的历史,G90成员已经做了很大的妥协,将多哈回合88项诉求减少到内罗毕的25项以及布宜诺斯艾利斯的10项,表明了推进谈判的最大诚意和克制态度。G90成员大幅缩减其诉求,不是因为他们的诉求不对,而是他们真诚希望所有成员真诚参与磋商。
在这10项要求中,有些是为了弥补原有条款存在的缺陷,如提案对启用GATT第18条的程序性安排作出规定;有些是要求恢复多边规则中一些好的做法,如对最不发达国家和有困难的发展中成员恢复《补贴与反补贴措施协定》第8条所规定的不可诉补贴。有些是要求给有需要的发展中成员更长的过渡期和评议期,如现行SPS措施发展中成员可争取到90天评议期,G90提案提出能力缺失的成员可以有180天;有些是敦促发达成员履行已经承诺的义务,如在技术转让方面。G90成员耐心地以口头和书面方式回答了成员提出的所有问题,但令人失望的是,有人却执意拒绝参与讨论,谈判未能取得进展。
主席先生,世贸组织是基于规则的机构。要重振人们对这一组织的信心,最根本的是对既有规则的敬畏和对先前承诺的履行。确保特殊与差别待遇“更加精确、有效、可操作”是我们的明确承诺和尚未完成的使命,是我们在发展领域最亟需开展的工作。我呼吁所有成员都拿出诚意,实质性地参与G90提案的讨论,认真回应发展中国家的关切,而不是把时间和精力花在没有结果的争论上。
主席先生,由于中国的问题被提及,我想就此做一评论。中国反对讨论发展中国家分类问题,并不是因为我们想要享受与弱小国家和LDC一样的特殊与差别待遇,而只是为了维护我们所享有的这一基本的制度性权利。
在实际操作层面,根据中国加入WTO协定,中国实际仅享受14个具体的S&DT条款,占全部155条的9%。在这14个条款中,6个是传统上发达国家应履行的“义务”,如应请求应提供WTO官方语言的文件,仅有8个是实实在在的所谓“权利”(如部分产品关税相对较高)。
即便如此,中国始终十分克制地使用特殊与差别待遇条款。显然我们从未像美方所述的那样,“要求与贝宁、利比里亚、肯尼亚或巴基斯坦享受一样的优惠待遇”,相反,我们知道自己作为一个贸易大国所应承担的责任,始终实事求是,根据自身实际能力作出贡献。正如在《信息技术协定》扩围谈判中所做的,中国成为谈判的最大贡献者,我们在未来的谈判中也将继续尽自己最大的努力。
谢谢主席先生。
Debate on S&D Treatment of Developing Members
Ambassador Shea's Statement
At the HODs meeting yesterday, I spoke about the paralysis of the WTO's negotiating function. In our view, the root causes are complex and varied. They include:
· Appellate Body overreach, which enticed many Members to disfavor negotiation and instead pursue litigation to achieve desired outcomes;
· A chronic lack of transparency by many Members, especially some major players, which is distorting our grasp of key issues and undermining the foundation for negotiations; and
· Certain Members' unjustified claim of automatic entitlement to blanket special and differential treatment (S&D), which ensures that ambition levels remain far too weak to produce negotiated outcomes. Members cannot find trade-offs or build coalitions when significant players use S&D to avoid making meaningful offers.
As we've discussed our S&D reform proposal with Members, we have heard three criticisms.
First, certain advanced, wealthy, or influential Members claim they have an automatic, permanent, and sacrosanct entitlement to blanket S&D. We disagree. Our approach to S&D eligibility can and must evolve to reflect the trade and development reality of today.
Second, some Members argue for a different solution – the “case-by-case” approach, where each Member is asked to contribute to the full extent of its capabilities to a set of disciplines. But we know from experience—it's called the Doha Round—that this approach does not work when some Members are not willing to take on obligations commensurate with their role in the global economy.
· Some Members point to the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) as a successful case-by-case approach to S&D, but the TFA is not a readily or generally applicable model moving forward. Recall that under the TFA, a Member may lose competitiveness if other Members fully implement the agreement and it does not. Most trade agreements operate differently, in that a Member is likely to believe it will be better off if other Members fully implement the obligations and it does not.
Third, some Members say it is folly to try to create categories of Members. This is an odd criticism, given that categories already exist. Today, there are three categories – first, those Members to which all obligations apply; second, the LDCs that enjoy enhanced flexibilities; and third, the majority of Members – around 90 – that claim entitlement to blanket S&D as self-declared developing countries.
So the starting point is not categorization, but what to do with this last category of Members that represent significantly divergent economies. These Members simply do not fit the same mold or have the same needs. The more economically advanced of these countries are clearly capable of negotiating the flexibilities they need, rather than availing themselves of blanket S&D.
As just one example, China's global merchandise exports are 14 times greater than the combined exports of all 49 countries that the UN categorizes as LDCs. Its economy is more than 11 times the economies of all 49 LDCs combined. China's per capita income is more than five times higher than that of the LDC average – a remarkable development since 1995, when China's per capita income was within $900 of the LDC's average.
China even admitted at the General Council meeting in July that China is not in the same position as Benin or Liberia. It is helpful that China recognizes that it should not receive the same flexibilities as LDCs. But does that mean that China believes it is in the same position as Pakistan or Kenya? Because today, China claims the right to seek the same blanket S&D as these and other lower-income countries.
In 1995, China's per capita income was nearly 20 percent smaller than that of Kenya and more than 25 percent smaller than that of Pakistan. Today, China's per capita income is nearly four times that of Kenya, and more than triple that of Pakistan.
The failure to differentiate some of this organization's most advanced, wealthy, or influential Members from LDCs and others diminishes the value of special and differential treatment to those who need it most. It also imperils our ability to reach new agreements that could provide greater opportunities for the WTO's poorest Members who are least integrated into the global trading system.
This issue, and the need for reform, is not going away. We look forward to continuing our engagement with Members.
Ambassador Zhang Xiangchen's Statement
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I have repeated many times that, the debate on criteria to differentiate developing members is totally meaningless, as it is a systematic and directional mistake. Development is one of the key objectives of the WTO, which is also an important attraction for many countries choosing to join in this Organization. As WTO members, our focus on development should be on how to translate the concept of development into practice rather than anything else.
To be specific, our collective efforts should be focused on how to effectively enforce the existing special and differential treatment (S&DT) provisions, and negotiate meaningful S&DT for the developing members, for example in the fisheries subsidy negotiations. For the existing S&DT provisions, there should be assurance that developing members in need could truly benefit from and fully integrate into the multilateral trading system.
Mr. Chairman, we did a preliminary review on the current 155 S&DT provisions contained in the 16 WTO agreements, finding that at least 105 provisions are too vague to operate, accounting for 67.7%; for the remaining 50 provisions, at least half of them are related to transitional period or technical assistance. So, there are only 25 S&DT provisions in existing WTO agreements that are directly linked to individual Members' rights and obligations, accounting for 16.1% of the total. It is therefore fair to say, the overwhelming majority of current S&DT provisions are only pie in the sky. There has never been an almighty blank check.
It is a long-standing consensus to make S&DT provisions more “precise, effective, and operational”, which is also a commitment across WTO Agreements. That is the very reason why developing members requested to discuss more than 200 “Implementation Issues” aiming at rebalancing the imbalanced rules from the Uruguay Round, and G90 put forward their written proposals. I fully endorse the statement made by the Ambassador of South Africa. Actually, recalling the past 20 years, G90 has been compromising by reducing their 88 original requests, to 25 in Nairobi, and to 10 in Buenos Aires, demonstrating their utmost sincerity and restraint. Such reduction is not because their request was wrong, rather it is because they do hope all Members could be engaged and thus show flexibility.
For the current 10 proposals, some are to fill the loopholes of existing provisions, such as proposing procedural arrangement to invoke Article 18 of GATT; some are to restore good practices in multilateral rules, such as treating subsidies granted by LDCs and developing members facing certain constraints as non-actionable subsidies according to Article 8 of ASCM; some are to allow developing members to have longer time-frames for transitions or comments, such as granting 180 days for members facing capacity constraints to make comments on SPS measures notified by developed members, whereas the current practice is 90 days; some are to urge developed members to honor their already-committed obligations, including technology transfer. G90 has made comprehensive responses both orally and in writing to all questions from members on their proposals. However, no progress has been made due to certain Members' reluctance to engage.
Mr. Chairman, the WTO is a rule-based organization. If we want to win back people's confidence in this organization, the most fundamental thing is to treat existing rules and implement promised commitments, with respect and awe. To make existing S&DT provisions “more precise, effective and operational” is the clear commitment and unfinished mission of all members, which is also the most urgent task in the area of development. I call upon all members to show our sincerity by meaningfully engaging in the discussion of the G90 proposal and carefully responding to practical concerns of developing members, rather than wasting time and resources on no outcome debates.
Mr. Chairman, since China was mentioned specifically, I would like to make a comment to respond. China standing against to the differentiation of developing members does not mean we want to enjoy the same favorable treatment as small economies and LDCs. What we want is only to safeguard our institutional right of S&DT.
In practice, according to our accession agreement, China has 14 specific S&DT provisions among all 155 articles, accounting only for 9%. Among the 14, 6 provisions are traditionally “obligations” of the developed members, such as providing translations of documents in WTO official languages upon request, only 8 provisions are so called meaningful “rights”, such as relatively higher tariffs for certain goods.
Even in such circumstances, China always shows restraint in invoking S&DT provisions. Obviously, China did not request to have the same S&DT as Benin, Liberia, Kenya or Pakistan, which was proclaimed by the United States. On the contrary, as a large trading nation, we recognize the responsibility China should bear. Our approach is to address different issues according to their specific situations and make contributions within our capability. As we did in the ITA expansion negotiations, China is the largest contributor among all the participants. We will continue to do that in the future.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
关于市场导向条件
谢伊大使发言
美国、巴西和日本要求设置本项议程,继续讨论市场导向条件对全球贸易体制的重要性。
经过共同努力,美国、巴西和日本发表了联合声明(WT/GC/W/803/REV.1)。该声明体现了我们对市场导向条件的重视,并对今年早些时候散发的总理事会决定草案做了进一步说明。
美巴日联合声明反映了我们对世贸组织核心原则的共同信念,认为将市场导向条件纳入其中对于自由、公平和互惠的世界贸易体制至关重要。
我们确认我们企业所遵循的、反映市场导向条件和规则的标准,同时强调所有成员的企业都应按照这些条件运作,从而确保我们的公民、工人和商业界获得公平的竞争环境。
美国和巴西7月份首次提出这份联合声明,并邀请有意联署的成员予以支持和参与。
很高兴地告诉大家,自那时起,我们与很多持支持态度的成员进行了磋商,并欢迎日本成为联合声明的联署方。我们感谢这些成员就此项重要议题与其他成员进行沟通的努力。在小范围磋商中我们听到的意见确认了这份联合声明反映了我们作为世贸成员的共同的价值观。
随着讨论的推进,我们继续欢迎持支持态度的成员参与我们的小范围磋商。
我们认为,在进行有意义的世贸组织改革的框架下,这项讨论是必要的。为实现改革,世贸成员必须向更为开放和市场导向的政策和条件前进(而非远离)。
但是近期二十国集团的讨论表明,不是所有的世贸成员都认可“市场导向政策”是世贸组织的一项原则,这点也在贸易部长会议公报附件的《利雅得倡议》中得到体现。
特别是有一个成员拒绝重申《马拉喀什宣言》的原则,甚至不同意提到宣言,而且对其加入承诺与市场导向政策存在关联持有异议。
近期二十国集团讨论的用处在于清晰地表明成员间存在着分歧,有些成员并不同意世贸组织的核心价值观。这凸显了重申这些核心价值的重要性。
美巴日联合声明忆及世贸组织旨在推动成员经济体参与世界贸易体制,而这一体制应“基于开放、市场导向政策和乌拉圭回合协定和决定中的承诺”。
关贸总协定缔约方和加入成员在此过程中进行的基于市场的改革有助于确保他们的加入遵循了开放和市场导向条件。这些成员为改革所付出的努力表明了他们对国际贸易体制的承诺,而该体制有赖于每个经济体实施市场导向条件。
确保市场参与者遵循市场导向条件,对实现由我们共同承诺遵守规则的国际贸易体制的利益至关重要。这个共同的基础对于确保所有成员的公平竞争是必要的。
一些成员认为我们确认市场导向条件的重要性是质疑成员选择不同经济模式的借口。他们认为世贸组织没有讨论此类选择的基础。
但这并不是我们提议进行的讨论,这些成员可能误解了我们的目的。我们的观点是市场导向条件提供了公平的竞争环境,因此是实现公平贸易的必要条件。我们没有听到任何成员对此有不同意见。如果给予国内实体特殊优势,难道真有成员相信在这种条件下可以进行公平贸易?
以联合声明中提到的融资和投资作为例子。当一个成员的经济状况通常可以保证由市场来决定融资和投资决策时,则意味着获得国家指导或政治指导的融资会带来不公平的优势。这不是一个不同经济模式的问题,而是反映了对公平竞争的共同理解。
为此,美巴日联合声明强调世贸成员的企业应在市场导向条件下运作,并指出了确保市场参与者获得这些条件的要素。随着讨论的推进,我们鼓励成员们对这些要素进行详细的审查。
正如我们所看到的,世贸组织的持续相关性取决于它能否实现基于开放的、市场导向政策的世界贸易体制的承诺。我们改革的努力能否成功,取决于我们是否有能力确保自由、公平和互惠贸易的根本前提完好无缺。
张向晨大使发言
主席先生,
毫无疑问,多边贸易体制是建立在市场经济基础之上的,WTO的所有规则都反映了市场经济的通行做法,是成员们所应遵循的准则。同样毫无疑问的是,四十年来,中国的改革开放始终朝着市场化的方向前进,这正是我们加入WTO的基础和坚定支持多边贸易体制的原因。
我们现在面临的挑战不是《马拉喀什宣言》说的什么,而是一些成员正在做的。顺便说一句,提到《马拉喀什宣言》,当我们说到“开放和市场导向政策”时,我们不能忘记宣言第5段“部长们忆及谈判结果包含给予发展中国家差别和更优惠待遇的规定,包括对最不发达国家的特殊情况所给予的特别关注”。这些话同等重要,遗憾的是现在有些成员选择性地失忆了。
我不想重复我上次说过的“市场导向这样的常识问题无需在总理事会上讨论”的话。曾在伯尔尼工作过的科学家爱因斯坦说过,“成功=艰苦劳动+正确方法+少说空话”。中国人自古就相信“清谈误国”。我的问题是,这个提案想到达什么目的,有什么后续措施?更使我感到困惑的是,此时此刻,如果我们不能阻止一个成员政府以任意的方式,强迫外国企业把自己的股份和技术卖给本国企业,我们怎么好意思坐在这里堂而皇之地讨论什么市场导向的条件呢?
主席先生,三年多来,我们没有能够采取有效的措施,制止破坏市场规则的单边保护主义措施在全球肆虐,我们所工作的这个组织为此广受外界诟病,我们应当感到羞愧。但是,至少我们还可以争辩,那不是因为我们不想,而是因为我们能力不够。而现在,我们何必要通过空谈市场导向条件而授人以柄,让别人嘲笑我们这里的人,不仅无能而且幼稚可笑呢?
当一项原则或一个体系失灵时,我们应该采取具体行动去修复它,而不能仅仅是在口头上反复强调规则的重要性和正确性,以展示那些破坏规则的人的无辜。
谢伊大使曾说过,“当国家将拇指甚至拳头按在天平上扭曲竞争,以达到有利于部分国内主体的结果时,不公就出现了”。我完全赞同他的说法。但是,让别人做到的事,首先要自己做到。
我想给大家举的例子是,当一国动辄以国家安全为由加征关税或剥夺外国企业服务准入时,不公就出现了;当一国以加征关税为筹码,逼迫他国在贸易谈判中让步时,市场就被扭曲了;当一国一边违反规则,一边阻挠多边裁决时,公平竞争就不存在了。空喊“市场导向条件”,不如采取具体行动,解决上述破坏公平竞争和市场导向条件的错误做法。Debate on Market-Oriented Conditions
Ambassador Shea's Statement
The United States, Brazil, and Japan have requested this agenda item to continue addressing the importance of market-oriented conditions to the global trading system.
As a result of our work together, Brazil, Japan, and the United States have released a joint statement (WT/GC/W/803/REV.1). The statement reflects the importance we attach to market-oriented conditions for the world trading system and further elaborates the draft General Council decision circulated earlier this year.
The joint Brazil-Japan-U.S. statement reflects our shared belief in the core principles of the WTO, to include that market-oriented conditions are fundamental to a free, fair, and mutually advantageous world trading system.
We affirm a number of criteria that reflect the market-oriented conditions and disciplines to which our own enterprises are subject. And, we affirm that all Members' enterprises should operate under these conditions to ensure a level playing field for our citizens, workers, and businesses.
When Brazil and the United States first introduced the joint statement in July, we invited the support and engagement of Members who wish to become co-sponsors.
We are pleased to report that, since that time, we have been able to hold consultations with a number of supportive Members. We were also pleased to welcome Japan's decision to become a co-sponsor of the joint statement, and we are thankful for their efforts to engage with other Members on this important matter. The views that we have heard in small group discussions confirm that the joint statement reflects our shared values as WTO Members.
We will continue to invite supportive Members to participate in one of our small groups as the discussions intensify.
We see this discussion as necessary in the context of achieving meaningful WTO reform. To achieve such reform, WTO Members must continue moving toward – and not away from – more open, market-oriented policies and conditions.
But as was made clear in recent G20 discussions, and reflected in the Riyadh Initiative Annex to the Trade Ministers' Communique, not all WTO Members agree that “market-oriented policies” is a principle of the WTO.
One Member in particular could not reaffirm the principles of the Marrakesh Declaration or even bring itself to reference the Declaration, and went on to dispute that its accession commitments tied it to any market-oriented policies.
The usefulness of the recent G20 exercise was to clearly articulate this division in the Membership, and that some do not agree with the core values of the institution. This crystalizes for us the importance of reaffirming those core values.
The Brazil-Japan-U.S. joint statement recalls that the WTO was established to promote Member economies' participation in a world trading system “based on open, market-oriented policies and the commitments set out in the Uruguay Round Agreements and Decisions”.
The market-based reforms that GATT parties and acceding Members undertook during that process helped to ensure that their participation was indeed based on open, market-oriented conditions. These Members' reform efforts demonstrated their commitment to an international trading system that depends on the operation of market-oriented conditions in each of our economies.
Ensuring that market-oriented conditions exist for market participants is critical to realizing the benefits of the international trading system that come from our mutual commitment to these rules. This common foundation is necessary to ensure a level playing field for all Members.
Some Members have argued that our efforts to affirm the importance of market-oriented conditions are a pretext for questioning Members' choice of different economic models. They argue that the WTO provides no basis for discussing those choices.
However, that is not the discussion we are proposing to have, and these Members may have misunderstood our purpose. What we have argued is that market-oriented conditions provide a level playing field and therefore are necessary conditions for fair trade. And, we have not heard any Member argue for a different position. Do any Members really believe that fair trade can result when special advantages are given to domestic entities under these conditions?
Take, for example, the joint statement elements on financing and investment. Where a Member's economic conditions generally ensure market-determined financing and investment decisions, it would mean that receipt of state-directed or politically-directed financing confers an unfair advantage. This is not a question of debating different economic models, but rather reflects a shared understanding of fair play.
To this end, the Brazil-Japan-U.S. joint statement affirms that Members' enterprises should operate under market-oriented conditions and notes the elements that indicate and ensure those conditions for market participants. We encourage Members to review these elements in detail as our discussions advance.
As we see it, the continued relevance of the WTO will depend on whether it can deliver on the promises of a world trading system based on open, market-oriented policies. The success of our reform efforts will depend on our ability to ensure the fundamental premise of free, fair, and mutually advantageous trade remains intact.
Ambassador Zhang Xiangchen's Statement
Thank you, Mr. Chairman,
It is true that the multilateral trading system is built on the basis of market economy, and all the WTO rules reflect the prevailing practices of market economy and are binding on all Members. There is also no doubt that in the past 40 years, China persistently deepens its reform and opening up to the world in the direction of market economy, which is exactly the basis of our accession to the WTO and the reason for our firm support for the multilateral trading system.
However, the challenge we are facing is not what Marrakesh Declaration says, but what some Members are doing. By the way, with regard to Marrakesh Declaration, when we talk about open and market-oriented policies, we should not forget Article 5, which I quote “Ministers recall that the results of the negotiations embody provisions conferring differential and more favorable treatment for developing economies, including special attention to the particular situation of least-developed countries”. Those words are equally important. Unfortunately, now some Members have selective amnesia.
I have no intention to repeat what I have said at the previous meeting that “common sense issues like market orientation do not need to be discussed at the General Council”, and simply dismiss the whole discussion. Albert Einstein, a scientist who had worked in Bern, once said, “Success is equal to hard work plus correct method plus less empty talk”. Chinese people have also believed in “empty talks harm the country” since ancient times. So, my questions are: what is the purpose of this proposal? what are the follow-up measures to be taken in the next step? What puzzles me even more is that, at this moment, if we cannot prevent a Member's government from forcing foreign companies to sell their equities and technology to its national companies in any way, how can we sit here comfortably and discuss and tell the world what the market orientated conditions are?
Mr. Chairman, we need to bear in mind that for more than three years, we have failed to take effective actions to stop unilateralist and protectionist measures that undermine the market rules from raging around the world, and this organization we work for has been widely criticized for falling short of such actions. We should feel ashamed. However, at least, we could still argue that it is not because we do not want to, but because we are not capable enough. But now, why should we talk empty about the market-oriented conditions to give more reasons for the international community to laugh at us, for being not only incapable, but also naive?
When a principle or a system is broken, what we should do is to take concrete actions to try to fix it rather than verbally repeating the importance and correctness of the rules to show the innocence of someone who broke the rules.
Ambassador Shea once said that “when the state puts its thumb – or even its fist – on the scale to distort competition and drive preferred outcomes to benefit certain domestic actors, that is unfair.” I couldn't agree with him more about that. But it is a common sense that if you ask others to do something, you should do it first.
Let me give you some specific examples. When a country, on the grounds of national security, arbitrarily and frequently imposes tariffs on foreign goods or deprives foreign services of market access, that is unfair. When a country uses tariffs as a leverage to force its trading partners to concede in trade negotiations, the market is distorted. When a country blatantly violates fundamental trade rules and at the same time blocks the independent and neutral adjudications, the level playing field is gone. Instead of chanting the empty slogan of “market-oriented conditions”, it's better for us to take concrete actions to address the above wrongful practices which undermine the fair competition and market-oriented conditions.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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