Officials take to global stage as China's influence grows

Officials take to global stage as China's influence grows

More Chinese taking leading positions at international organisations will bring China's expertise to global development and enhance the country's reputation in world affairs, observers said.

Zhao Baige, vice-president of the Chinese Red Cross, was elected vice-president of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies on Wednesday.

Two weeks ago, Hao Ping, China's vice-minister for education and representative to the UNESCO executive board, was elected chairman of the 37th General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation for a two-year term.

In addition, four other Chinese officials also took charge of various international organisations this year.

China's Vice-Minister of Finance Li Yong became director-general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation in June. Yi Xiaozhun, China's permanent representative to the World Trade Organisation, was appointed as deputy director-general of the WTO in August. And Zhang Xiaogang, general manager of Anshan Iron and Steel, became president of the International Organisation for Standardization in September.

In August, Xu Haoliang, who joined the United Nations as an intern, was appointed assistant secretary-general of the United Nations.

From 2003 to 2013, a total of 15 Chinese officials gained leading positions at international organisations.

Zhou Xinyu, a researcher at Beijing Foreign Studies University, said the growing number of Chinese taking senior positions at international agencies is a result of China's growing strength and global influence.

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