In the coming five years, China's imports are expected to more than double to exceed 8 trillion U.S. dollars, Yi Xiaozhun, China's Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization (WTO) said in an open forum held at the WTO headquarters Thursday.
In recent years, China has enhanced its efforts to increase its imports, which proved to be a significant driving force for global economic growth.
Yi said that China's imports have increased by 4.7 times over the past decade, which he said "not only diversified China's domestic consumption but also created enormous job opportunities for other countries."
In particular, Yi said, China's imports from the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) increased by 24 percent annually between 2000 and 2009. Since 2008, China has become the largest export destination of the LDCs, absorbing roughly 23 percent of their total exports.
Apart from imports, China's overseas investment has also seen exponential growth. In 2003, China registered an outward direct investment of 2.8 billion dollars, and in 2010, it hit 78.8 billion dollars, mostly going to developing countries.
The open forum, jointly launched by the International Trade Center (ITC) and the WTO, discussed "China's role in the new global order."
ITC Executive Director Patricia Francis and WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy also attended the forum.