‘World wants justice, not hegemony’ | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 21, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:16 AM, April 21, 2021

‘World wants justice, not hegemony’

Xi calls for fairer world order amid rivalry with US

Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday called for a rejection of hegemonic power structures in global governance, amid growing tensions between Washington and Beijing over a widening range of issues including alleged human rights abuses. 

Speaking at the annual Boao Forum for Asia, Xi criticised efforts by some countries to "build barriers" and "decouple", which he said would harm others and benefit no one.

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China has long called for reforms of the global governance system to better reflect a more diverse range of perspectives and values from the international community, including its own, instead of those of a few major nations.

It has also repeatedly clashed with the biggest stakeholders in world governance, particularly the United States, over a range of issues from human rights to China's economic influence over other countries.

"The world wants justice, not hegemony," Xi said in remarks broadcast to the forum.

"A big country should look like a big country by showing that it is shouldering more responsibility," he said.

While Xi did not identify any country in his remarks, Chinese officials have in recent times referred to US "hegemony" in public criticisms of Washington's global projection of power in trade and geopolitics.

As the Biden administration rallies other democratic allies to harden their stance on China, Beijing is seeking to strengthen ties with its autocratic partners and economically dependent neighbours in Southeast Asia.

Chinese speakers at the Boao forum, Asia's answer to Davos, also affirmed Beijing's commitment to global free trade.

China's trade practices were a focus of an intense tariff war between Beijing and Washington under the Trump administration, with the United States accusing Beijing of unfair subsidiaries that give Chinese companies unfair advantage abroad and forced transfers of technology and intellectual property.

"The biggest experience that China's accession to the World Trade Organization 20 years ago is that we Chinese are not afraid of competition," Long Yongtu, China's former chief negotiator for the China's WTO entry in 2001, told the forum on Monday.

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