China reaffirms support for UNs leading role in world affairs

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“We will, as always, abide by the UN Charter and fulfil in good faith our obligations under international conventions,” he told the 192-member body on the opening day of its annual session.“We will intensify cooperation with fellow developing countries, and support their greater say in international affairs. We will remain forever a good partner and brother of developing countries.”Mr. Wen spent much of his address listing China’s successes over the past three decades – its increased economic and overall national strength, the marked improvement in the livelihood of its people, its continually expanding cooperation with the outside world – elements which he called “a historic leap from mere subsistence to moderate prosperity.”But he also cited the shortcomings. China’s gross domestic product (GDP) is the third largest in the world, but in per capita terms, it is only one tenth of that of developed countries. It has enjoyed over 30 years of fast growth, but its further development faces energy, resources and environmental constraints. It is a leading producer of important products, but remains at the lower end of the global industrial chain. “China’s coastal areas and some of the big and medium-sized cities thrive in modernization, but many places in the central and western regions and the vast rural areas are still rather backward, and we have 150 million people living below the poverty line set by the United Nations,” he said.“The Chinese people’s livelihood has made significant improvement, but we do not yet have a full-fledged social security system, and we are confronted with high employment pressure. Our people are more and more actively engaged in the country’s social and political development, and citizens’ basic rights and interests are better protected, yet our democracy and legal system still have room for improvement and such social ills as inequity and corruption still exist.”China faces unprecedented challenges brought by problems both old and new and remains a developing country. “These are our basic national conditions. This is the real China,” he said.Mr. Wen pledged that China will continue to deepen institutional reform, develop the public sector of the economy as well as encouraging and guiding the development of the private sector, pay greater attention to improving people’s well-being, further reform income distribution, and improve the social security system, including old-age support, medical care and unemployment benefit programmes.“China will be even more open to the world. Mutually beneficial cooperation for win-win progress is a long-term strategy that we will stick to in opening up to the world. We will follow established international rules in expanding business ties with other countries. We will continue to improve the environment for foreign investors, optimize the structure of foreign capital utilization and explore new ways for overseas investment and cooperation,” he said, condemning protectionism in all its manifestations.“China will stay firmly committed to peaceful development. You may ask, ‘What is the essence of peaceful development?’ It is to foster a peaceful international environment for our development and at the same time contribute to world peace through our development. This is something inherent in the concept of socialism with Chinese characteristics.” 23 September 2010China will continue to firmly support the leading role of the United Nations in international affairs, and its economic development will not harm or pose a threat to anyone, Premier Wen Jiabao assured the General Assembly today.

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