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APEC leaders adopt Declaration on advancing free trade

Reporter: Dan Collyns 丨 CCTV.com

11-21-2016 12:50 BJT

Full coverage: Xi Visits Ecuador, Peru and Chile, Attends APEC Summit

The 2016 APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting that has concluded in Lima, Peru. Leaders of the 21 APEC member economies have issued a joint statement endorsing free trade and speaking out against the dangers of protectionism.

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders pose for a group picture in Lima, Peru on November 20, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders pose for a group picture in Lima, Peru on November 20, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

The leaders of half the world’s economy set aside their differences for a traditional APEC staple: the leaders’ group photo. Donning typical Peruvian shawls, they stood shoulder-to-shoulder.

President Xi Jinping stood alongside the host-Peruvian President, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski. U.S. President Barack Obama, on the last stop of his last foreign trip as leader of the world's largest economy, stood in the back row. Tough discussions aside, they all agreed on the benefits of free trade.

In a final statement Kuczynski said protectionism would hurt the 21 Asia-Pacific economies represented, clear reference to fears that Obama’s successor could change the landscape for trade in the Asia Pacific region.

Speaking at a bilateral meeting between China and the U.S. on Saturday, Xi pledged to open up China’s economy even more and expand cooperation with the US.

“Both China and the United States are important member economies in APEC. China stands ready to have more coordination with the U.S. and to work alongside others to make sure the meeting in Peru is a success and to inject new momentum into regional economic cooperation, and the growth of the Asia-Pacific economy,” Xi said.

In his keynote address on Saturday, Xi hinted that Beijing would take the lead in global trade if Washington turns protectionist.

Xi pledged he would not shut China’s door to the outside world, but open up more. He said innovation and connectivity were new sources of growth, which would boost open, free trade across the Asia Pacific.

China will promote its vision for regional trade through two free trade bloc proposals, one of which excludes the United States.



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