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      Services trade collaboration hailed

      By WANG MINGJIE in London/CUI CHAOQUN/REN QI in Moscow | China Daily | Updated: 2021-09-06 09:42
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      The Beijing Shougang Industrial Park, one of the twin venues for the 2021 CIFTIS, hosts thematic exhibitions, including one focused on telecommunications, computer and information services. [Photo/Xinhua]

      The China International Fair for Trade in Services will bring new opportunities to the world services trade industry and bolster global confidence in the economic recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic, experts and business leaders say.

      The fair in Beijing, with more than 10,000 companies from 153 countries and regions taking part, opened on Thursday and lasts until Tuesday.

      "China is growing faster in the service sector than any other country," said Stephen Perry, chairman of The 48 Group Club in Britain.

      The fair will provide people with a great opportunity to get a sense of the world's digital future, as well as China's fast expanding service industry, Perry said.

      China, the first major economy to recover from the impact of the pandemic, is the place to go to do business, especially when it comes to the service industry, which represents the future of the world economy, he said.

      Alexander Lomanov, deputy director of the Institute of World Economy and International Relations of the Russian Academy of Sciences, said the fair not only helps to expand collaboration between China and its partners but also produces new contracts and new opportunities in the services trade industry and helps the global economy to grow.

      In present circumstances China is the only country in which such a large-scale exhibition can be held, Lomanov said.

      The fair will greatly inspire Chinese companies and will increase their confidence in the global economy returning to normal, he said.

      Important platform

      Dennis Wilkens, director for China of Germany Trade and Invest, said the services trade fair is an important platform that demonstrates China's opening-up.

      "A large number of companies have emerged in China that are being offered opportunities in Germany and Europe. The development shows the performance of China and its companies in the digital and services sector in recent years. Chinese companies are now globally active in the markets of the future."

      Didier Sornette, professor at ETH Zurich and SUSTech, said it is important for there to be progressive convergence of domestic rules with those in high-standard international free trade agreements, making the best of both worlds. "China and the world need more than ever creativity, innovations, inventions and discoveries to address the huge challenges of sustainability and harmonious symbiosis between humans and nature."

      Anneriese Rodriguez, an editor with Cuban state TV, said the event confirms the Chinese government's eagerness to promote global commerce and enhance the digital economy amid the pandemic. "This international fair will become a platform to reinforce international cooperation in the context of the pandemic and contribute to world economic recovery," Rodriguez said.

      Christopher Bovis, professor of international business law at Hull University in the United Kingdom, said China will "facilitate free movement of services by a cast of regulatory measures which aim to promote unobstructed investment, delivery and growth in the sector".

      By recognizing the need for a financial platform to serve innovation-oriented companies in the services sector, China will set a global example of linking finance directly to the services sector, Bovis said.

      Zhao Ruinan in Beijing and Xinhua contributed to this story.

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