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China´S Accession To Wto: Exaggerated Fears?


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  • Yuefen Li


The determination of China to accede to the World Trade Organization was driven mostly by its desire to further its economic reform. However, because of the spectacular growth in its international trade in the past two decades, there is the fear that with China’s accession to WTO, China would undergo another wave of international trade expansion which might cost job opportunities in both developed and developing worlds. On the other hand, the Chinese are wary of social dislocation to be caused by intensified foreign competition in the post-accession period. A close examination of the structure of China’s international trade shows that because of the high import contents of China’s exports and the fact that foreign-funded companies account for about half of China’s international trade, future growth in China’s international trade will benefit to various degrees China’s trading partners as well as home countries of transnational corporations. Furthermore, the talk of an imminent export surge from China seems far- fetched, as the conditions of China’s accession to WTO as well China’s foreign trade potential are unlikely to permit that to take place. On the whole, the challenges posed by China’s accession to WTO will, at least in the short run, be greater to China than to its trading partners. However, two decades of fast economic growth and opening-up to the outside world have prepared the country. Therefore, the new set of problems for China is likely to be surmountable.

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Paper provided by United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in its series UNCTAD Discussion Papers with number 165.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:unc:dispap:165

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  1. Ianchovichina, Elena, 2001. "Trade Liberalization in China’s Accession to WTO," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 16, pages 421-445.
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