Su Qingyi: Promoting the Improvement of National Governance Capacity by Building a Multilateral Trading System
Created On : 2018-09-10    Views : 111

There is an inseparable relationship between national governance and global governance.

National governance is part of global governance. Speaking from a spatial scale, there are different forms of governance, including the governance of different regions within a country, national governance, regional governance among multiple countries, and global governance. Clearly, national governance is part of global governance. Global governance is an extension of national governance, and national governance is the foundation of global governance. Even if it is not usually emphasized that global governance encompasses national governance, good national governance is the prerequisite for global governance to work well, and it is necessary to assume that the national governance of countries involved in global governance is sound. 

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National governance and global governance interact with each other. The enhancement of a country’s national governance capacity directly promotes the country's ability to participate in global governance. Without a certain capacity for national governance, it is impossible to participate in good global governance. And the other way round, participation in global governance can also contribute to national governance and better align national governance with global governance. For countries with better national governance capacity, when participating in global governance, they will try to promote the content of national governance to global governance, while countries with relatively weak national governance capabilities can learn from global governance to enhance their national governance capabilities.

There are differences and similarities between national governance and global governance. What national governance and global governance have in common is that both rely on certain rules and are rules-based governance. Therefore, both national governance and global governance need to establish appropriate rules first. In addition, on the basis of rules, national governance and global governance also need to consider the ability to enforce the rules. Rules and the ability to enforce them are two aspects of evaluating national governance and global governance. However, there are clear differences between national governance and global governance. The rules of global governance clearly have to take into account the realities of national governance in individual countries, so the difficulty of reaching them has significantly increased. Even if the rules are agreed, their enforcement would be more complex than national governance.

The multilateral trading system is one of the important mechanisms of global governance

Global governance contains many aspects and areas, such as global economic governance, global climate governance and global network governance, and more. Among them, global economic governance is undoubtedly the most important and most concerned area. Global economic governance is subdivided into global trade governance, global financial governance, global investment governance and other areas. In fact, trade, investment and finance are also the most important aspects of economic globalization. Among them, trade representing the flow of goods and services between countries is the most basic content of economic globalization. Global trade governance therefore constitutes the foundation of global economic governance. The usage rate of the concept of global trade governance is still relatively low. Instead, the frequently used concepts are global trading system, multilateral trading system and regional trading arrangements. As a matter of fact, they all mean the same thing, that is, global trade governance mainly involves trade cooperation or other arrangements made by various economies to deal with trade issues. In global trade governance, the most important mechanism is undoubtedly the multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organization (WTO) as the core. Others, such as regional trading arrangements and bilateral trade agreements, are complementary to global trade governance. The multilateral trading system can bring as many of the world's economies as possible into a unified range of rules, and provide the rule support for as many of the world’s trade operations as possible, in this way, the transaction costs of global trade operations can be reduced as much as possible.

China’s consistent support for the multilateral trading system is very clear.

After China's entry into the WTO, China's active implementation of its commitments for the WTO is itself the maintenance of the multilateral trading system. In addition, China has actively supported the WTO’s three major mechanisms, namely, the rule negotiation mechanism, trade policy review mechanism, and dispute settlement mechanism. In terms of the rule negotiation mechanism, China actively participated in the Doha Round negotiations. Now that the Doha Round has stalled, China has actively supported the negotiation and entry into force of the trade facilitation agreement.

With regard to the trade policy review mechanism, since 2006, China has actively cooperated with the WTO's biennial review of China's trade policy. This year, China has just received the WTO’s seventh trade policy review. In the area of the dispute settlement mechanism, China has actively protected its own rights and interests within the framework of the WTO. If it loses, it will execute the results as required. In addition, China has also actively supported the negotiation of the WTO’s plurilateral trade agreements, such as information technology agreements and environmental product agreements, and actively participates in government procurement agreements. During China's presidency of the G20 in 2016, in the Working Group on Trade and Investment, China worked actively in support of the multilateral trading system and the G20 trade ministers’ meeting reaffirmed the WTO’s central role in today's global economy.

Mutual promotion of the building of the multilateral trading system and the improvement of national governance capacity in the new era.

First of all, participation in the building of the multilateral trading system requires a country to have sufficient capacity. China should enhance its internal strengths well and actively improve its national governance capabilities, especially those related to trade. On this basis, China should take an active part in the building of the multilateral trading system and make its own contribution. Secondly, China should take the initiative to align itself with the rules of the multilateral trading system and other high standard economic & trade rules, and utilize the pressure brought by external rules to promote the improvement of national governance. China has already been involved in many plurilateral trade agreements in the multilateral trading system. In the future, China should speed up its pace of joining government procurement agreements and force itself to improve its procurement laws, regulations and relevant rules by joining government procurement agreements. The last is to firmly safeguard national interests through participation in the multilateral trading system. With the difficulties in economic globalization and the increase of China's economic volume, accusations and doubts about China in the field of trade are also on the rise. China should enhance its ability to govern the country and to participate in the multilateral trading system at the same time, so as to cope with external challenges and actively safeguard national interests.

In a word, national governance and global governance are inextricably linked and mutually influenced. As an important part of global economic governance, the multilateral trading system is firmly defended by China. In the process of participating in the building of the multilateral trading system, China will enhance its capacity to govern the country and to participate in global governance, and firmly safeguard its national interests. The building of the multilateral trading system and the improvement of national governance capacity will promote each other.