Process of China's Opening Up to the Outside World
Since 1978, China's opening up has undergone six phases: (i) trial establishment of special economic zones: (ii) opening of coastal port cities; (iii) further expanding coastal areas for opening up; (iv) opening and developing Pudong New Area of Shanghai; (v) all-around opening of cities in bordering areas, along the Yangtze and interior provincial capital cities; (vi) China's entry into WTO, marking a brand-new phase for its opening-up.
Over the past 30 years since its opening up, China has successively set up five special economic zones, opened 14 coastal port cities and Pu-dong New Area of Shanghai, establish 15 bonded areas, 32 economic and technological development zones, 52 high-tech development zones and 38 export processing zones, and opened 13 border cities, six cities along the Yangtze and 18 provincial capital cities. That helps formation of an all-dimensional and multi-tiered pattern for China's opening up.
According to World Bank statistics, the GDP per capita in China was merely $230 in 1978, ranking 104th among the 126 countries and regions listed. At that time, many Chinese people did not have sufficient food or clothing. In 2008, the GDP reached $4.32 trillion, and China's economic aggregate was at the third place in the world, with GDP per capita hit-ting $3,266.
In 2002, the 16th Central Committee of the CPC called for the building of a well-off society in an all-around way, pro-posing the ambitious objective of reaching a GDP in 2020 that would be four times that of 2000, on the basis of optimized structure and increased profits.
Foreign Relations of Modern China
After World War Il, the western world and the eastern world faced off. As soon as the People's Republic of China was founded, the Chinese government started frequent diplomatic activities.
In terms of relations with neigh-boring and friendly countries, China proposed the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, namely mutual respect for each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, non-aggression, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence. These magnanimous and open principles, which were not bound by ideology and social system, were gradually recognized by the international community, and became basic principles for conducting international relations. At the Bandung Conference of 1955, China insisted on the guideline of "seeking common ground while reserving differences." The participants reached an agreement of Ten Principles under the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, promoting unity and cooperation among Asian and African countries.
In 1971, the 26th General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) approved the proposal overwhelmingly, recovering all legal rights of the People's Republic of China in the UN.
[ The 26th General Assembly of United Nations resumed the legal seat of the People's Republic of China in October 1971. Members of Chinese delegate laugh heartily.]
The Ping Pong Diplomacy and the secret visit of Kissinger to China in 1971 revived Sino-US relations. US President Richard Nixon visited China in 1972, and both sides signed the Sino-US Joint Communique, emphasizing the conduction of Sino-US relations under the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. In 1979, China and the United States established formal diplomatic relations.
Japanese Prime Minister Tanaka Kakuei visited China in 1972, and signed the Agreement of Relation Normalization between China and Japan, marking a new era in Sino-Japa-nese relations. [ In August 1978, China-Japan Peace and Friendship Treaty is inked in Beijing.]
As relations between China and the US and Japan improved, many western countries established diplomatic relations with China.
Since the 1980s, China has continued to insist on the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. China did not ally with any big country or big groups of countries. Rather China developed friendly and cooperative relations with all counties. China's independent and peaceful diplomatic policies have been enriched and improved, and a new full-range diplomatic pattern was formed in the 21st century.[ In December 2001, China enters WTO, marking China's position as an important part in the global economic system.]
China has also contributed to regional peace and stability. China joined APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) in 1991 and played an important role in the APEC cooperation progress. China signed the Foundation Declaration of Shanghai Cooperation Organization with Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in Shanghai, to establish the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. In addition, trade co-operation between China and ASEAN developed in an all-around way, with the China-ASEAN free trade zone being established in 2001.
Since China recovered its lawful seat in the UN, the country has carried out activities in accordance with the objectives and principles of the UN Charter and is trusted and recognized by the international community. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, China actively takes part in peacekeeping actions and promotes the UN disarmament plan, making positive contributions to moderating the international situation and maintaining world peace. [ In 2008, China successfully held the 29th Olympic Games.]
By the end of 2009, China had established diplomatic relations with 171 countries in the world, joined more than 100 inter-governmental organizations, and signed almost 300 international treaties. Today's China insists on peace, development and cooperative principles, an independent foreign policy of peace, a peaceful development approach, and an opening-up strategy of mutual benefit, and continues to endeavor to play a constructive role in international affairs and urge the international order to develop in a more reasonable and just direction.