China has been seeking to renew global focus on development issues and explore pathways for practical cooperation in an era when the world is beset with daunting challenges and great uncertainties.
The Global Development Initiative (GDI), proposed by China at the General Debate of the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in 2021, aims to steer global development toward a new stage of balanced, coordinated and inclusive growth.
CALL OF THE TIMES
Due to challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic and regional conflicts, the world has moved further off track in meeting the globally agreed-upon deadline set by the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
In response to the call of the times, the GDI provides the international community with a viable path to accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, according to the Global Development Report issued by the Center for International Knowledge on Development.
The GDI is a promising response to help the world recover from recent setbacks and accelerate the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals worldwide, said Siddharth Chatterjee, a UN resident coordinator in China.
"The GDI is another major initiative put forward by China after the Belt and Road Initiative. It is a 'remobilization' of world development cooperation and a 'reaffirmation' of the people-oriented concept," said Fahd Almenei, researcher with the Center for Research and Intercommunication Knowledge of Saudi Arabia.
"The initiative is another important public good provided by China to the world, and serves as an effective platform for all parties to align their development policies and deepen practical cooperation," said Chen Fengying, a researcher at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations.
From putting forward the Belt and Road Initiative to offering COVID-19 vaccines to countries in need and proposing the GDI, China has provided many public goods to the world in recent years, embodying its sense of responsibility as a major country, Chen said.
WALK THE TALK
Since its inception one year ago, the GDI has received warm responses from the international community, with more than 100 countries having expressed their support to date.
In January, the Group of Friends of the GDI was launched at the UN, and over 60 countries have joined the group so far.
China is pushing for the translation of the initiative from concept to reality, with concrete results from cooperation projects in eight key areas: poverty alleviation, food security, COVID-19 response and vaccines, financing for development, climate change and green development, industrialization, digital economy, and connectivity.
In January, China launched Phase III of the FAO-China South-South Cooperation Trust Fund with a total amount of 50 million U.S. dollars, providing considerable resources for international cooperation in poverty reduction and food security.
In February, the China-Pacific Island Countries Climate Action Cooperation Center was inaugurated to support relevant countries in enhancing their capacity to cope with climate change and carry out relevant studies.
In March, under the GDI framework, China co-organized a seminar program with the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation. The program has trained over 1,000 people from nearly 100 countries on cross-border e-commerce.
In addition, China has also increased vaccine and medicine supply to developing countries, set up various platforms for the sharing of development knowledge and experience, and channeled more resources toward development assistance.
In the future, China will "build on the consensus to establish a pool of GDI projects to be participated in by all parties," Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi has said.
China will stay committed to true multilateralism and an open and inclusive spirit of partnership, actively share development expertise and experience, and work with all parties to implement the GDI, step up efforts to advance the 2030 Agenda, and build a global community of development with a shared future, Wang noted.