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China's commitment to free trade and BRICS 'appreciated': Australian business expert

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-09-05 09:33

SYDNEY - A leading business expert in Australia highly commented on China's commitment to globalization and free trade on Monday, after Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed the 2017 BRICS summit underway in Xiamen city of southeast China's Fujian province.

Hans Hendrischke, a professor at the prestigious University of Sydney Business School, told Xinhua that at a time when free trade agreements are being "tossed out and reconsidered" in some parts of the world, it is quite "appreciated" by the global business community to have a strong commitment and a platform to actually grow cooperation.

"At the moment (BRICS) is probably the strongest platform of the developing countries," Hendrischke said.

"It became a platform for growth of the developing countries, that had the highest economic growth in the 2010s," he said.

For Hendrischke, China has sent a clear signal to other countries which are reverting to protectionist rhetoric and has highlighted the need for stronger partnerships and international cooperation.

The steps taken by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa in working together and forming a consensus is crucial, which means to create an opportunity to shoulder more responsibility globally in order to uphold global peace and economic stability, according to Hendrischke.

"I think an important one (step) is what Xi Jinping called economic governance, and that is bringing in development goals. It's bringing in sustainable development," Hendrischke said.

"It's a new agenda which hasn't really been at the forefront of those five countries in the past."

He believes that China's role must be to continue to show and develop leadership for globalization and bring in other countries from different continents to share that commitment.

"In 2000, when the idea was floated with BRICS, China was about 44 percent of the combined GDP of those BRICS countries, now it is 66.6 percent or two thirds, which means much of what is happening is driven by China," Hendrischke said.

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