Business, Finance & Economics

China: WTO 10th anniversary


China, which marks the 10th anniversary of its accession to the World Trade Organization on Dec. 11, has seen its GDP almost quadruple over the past decade, and exports and imports rise nearly fivefold. Here, a Chinese man dressed as a mythical figure hands out discount coupons to a tourist in Beijing.


Mark Ralston

China is rejoicing in its 10th anniversary as a member of the World Trade Organization, but its trade partners aren't exactly celebrating.

In recent comments, officials from both the United States and European Union have been critical of China as a global trade partner.

The US envoy to the WTO even said China is backsliding on commitments it made when it joined the organization and that China has much work to do to be an equal partner. Others have begun noting that China's economic ascent has come hand-in-hand with its WTO membership.

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In a commentary published Monday in the official China Daily newspaper, Pascal Lamy, director of the WTO, said China's rise has come hand-in-hand with its WTO membership.

"This is not to suggest that China's success is entirely due to WTO accession," Lamy wrote.

"But WTO membership helped the Chinese government to anchor the reform and opening-up initiated by former leader Deng Xiaoping by binding China into the global trading system. These reforms improved the efficiency of the Chinese economy and boosted growth."