Mr. Chairman，Ladies and Gentlemen，
It is a pleasure to meet you， friends from the Asia-Pacific business community in this thriving city of Shanghai. And I am delighted to have this opportunity to discuss with you the future development of the Asia-Pacific region and the world at large.
How should the world evolve in the new century？ Where should the world be heading for？ What should the Asia-Pacific look like in the future？ These are the questions we should think very hard and address with a vision and practical measures.
The ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius once said， “Peace and harmony are the supreme virtues of heaven and earth”。 This maxim may well reflect man's long-cherished aspiration for peace， tranquillity， development and prosperity.
However， the world is not tranquil and is still plagued by regional conflicts and flagrant terrorism. The September 11 terrorist attacks have disrupted world peace and stability， and terrorism has become a global scourge.
The history of human civilization， mankind's successes and failures， sufferings and glories， have left us a profound lesson. The realities of today have given us a mandate– a mandate to usher in a new era.
We must bear in mind the universal desire of the people for peace， development and cooperation. We must seek to create a new era when disputes are replaced by consultations， confrontation by dialogue， when mutual respect prevails and different cultures develop side by side in this diverse and colorful world， and when people throughout the world live in peace and enjoy development and prosperity， free from terrorist threats.
With the advent of the 21st century， economic globalization is gathering pace. Science and technology are advancing rapidly and have become an important driving force behind the world economic growth.
But unfortunately， this process is accompanied by a widening gap between the North and the South and an uneven development among countries and regions.
It is therefore essential to have a correct assessment of what positive impact economic globalization and scientific and technological advancement have had and may continue to have on the expansion of productive forces， creation of social wealth， dissemination of knowledge and civilization and even world peace and stability so that we can seize the historical opportunity and bring about a leapfrog development.
It is equally essential， if not more， to address the negative effects of economic globalization and the side effects of scientific and technological advancement and work real hard for common development and prosperity of all members of society. To this end， the whole world should join hands to ensure that all nations enjoy the benefits of scientific and technological progress， economic globalization and the New Economy through full participation and cooperation.
The Asia-Pacific region achieved great economic progress in the last century， playing an important role in boosting regional and global economic development. This is attributable to the concerted endeavor， closer cooperation， pioneering work and enterprising spirit of APEC members and all other economies in the region.
In the new century， the Asia-Pacific economic development is faced with both opportunities and challenges. The region-wide and world economic slowdown and， particularly， the September 11 attacks have added to the difficulties and uncertainties of our regional economy. Having said that， I wish to stress that in the long run， the Asia-Pacific economic prospect is broad and bright.
As long as we seize the opportunities brought by economic globalization and scientific and technological revolution， stick to open regionalism， enhance regional cooperation and adopt strong macro-economic measures to speed up restructuring， we will be able to overcome difficulties and open up new dimensions for growth and prosperity in our region. We have full confidence in that.
The theme of APEC 2001 is so designed as to reflect this historical need.
If we are to promote the development of a multilateral trading system and promote greater openness of our region， we must strengthen trade and investment liberalization.
If we are to ensure that all APEC members benefit from economic globalization and the New Economy， we must enhance capacity building to open up opportunities for future development.
If we are to create a sound environment for regional economic development， we must have dialogue on financial policies.
That is why “Achieving common prosperity through participation and cooperation” has been made the theme of APEC 2001.
The APEC Business Advisory Council （ABAC）， the most important organization representing APEC business community， has since its inception put forward a series of constructive ideas and recommendations concerning the two main areas of APEC cooperation —— Trade and investment liberalization and Ecotech.
Many of them have been endorsed by our leaders and have been put into practice， becoming a catalyst of the APEC process. ABAC has served as an easily accessible and interactive bridge between business and government and set a fine example of cooperation between government and the business community.
The ABAC Report 2001 to APEC Leaders， which is entitled “Common Development through Market Opening， Capacity Building and Full Participation”， tallies well with the theme of APEC 2001. The Report contains many constructive ideas and suggestions on trade and investment liberalization and facilitation， human capacity building， financial cooperation， SME development and Ecotech. I am sure that they will be carefully considered by our leaders and implemented in real earnest， once adopted.
With your permission， I would like to make some personal observations about what should be the priorities of ABAC in the years to come.
Firstly， it is important that ABAC continues to support SME development in the region. SMEs are a new force of regional economic growth and technological innovation. You may wish to offer some advice as to what should be done to help SMEs more effectively with their technological innovation， financing and corporate governance. You may also wish to take some practical actions to help SMEs， which do need such help and assistance.
Secondly， it is imperative that ABAC helps to promote human resources development and capacity building in the region. People of talent are the prime assets that underpin the success of all undertakings. Without these assets， there will no prosperity of a nation or enterprise to speak of. Opportunities favor only those countries and regions that have done a good job of human resources development. In this connection， I sincerely hope that ABAC will play a greater role in training and fostering talented men and women who can stand up to the challenges of the new century.
Ladies and Gentlemen，
China cannot develop in isolation of the world， and the world cannot achieve global prosperity without the development of China. China is an important member of the Asia-Pacific and international community. Over the past 20 years and more， China has maintained a sustained， rapid and healthy economic development. An all-directional opening-up pattern is basically up and running.
In the new century， we will continue to adhere to our independent foreign policy of peace， which is aimed at promoting world peace and stability， common growth and prosperity. We will continue to develop friendly relations and cooperation with the rest of the world on the basis of equality， reciprocity and mutual benefit. And we will continue to pursue the policy of opening-up， deepen the reform and devote ourselves to economic development.
China's economy will converge with that of the world faster with more solid strides. China's WTO entry will open a new page for our economy. As we enjoy our WTO rights， we will fulfill our obligations and honor our commitments. We will accelerate the opening of the infrastructure sector， such as energy， communications and telecommunications and provide， step by step， more opportunities for foreign businesses to invest in such areas as banking， insurance， tourism， retail sales， foreign trade and legal consulting services. We will improve our laws and regulations regarding foreign investment and provide better services to overseas-funded ventures.
China's development and the process of reform and opening-up augur well for trade and economic ties between China and the rest of the world， particularly the Asia-Pacific. Tremendous business opportunities in China are awaiting all entrepreneurs who have the vision.
Ladies and Gentlemen，
I do hope that all of you present here and all other people who love peace and aspire development will work together to build a lasting world peace and promote growth and prosperity throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
To conclude， I wish to propose a toast to the bright future of the Asia-Pacific region.