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SHANGHAI, Nov 5 (Reuters) - Global trade barriers must be removed, and countries should uphold basic multilateral trade principles while standing firm against protectionism and unilateralism, Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a speech on Tuesday.
Speaking at the opening of the Nov. 5-10 China International Import Expo, or CIIE, an annual import show in Shanghai, Xi said more efforts were needed to boost international cooperation and remove barriers to innovation.
"There is no single country that can resolve by itself the difficulties facing the development of the world's economy," Xi said.
Xi reiterated previous pledges to open China's economy further to the outside world and strengthen the country's protections of intellectual property.
China launched the import expo last year as the China-U.S. trade war was heating up. Xi on Monday night called CIIE "a major initiative in the history of global trade and an important platform for international cooperation in the new era".
The expo comes as U.S. and Chinese negotiators work to finalize a text of a "phase one" agreement for U.S. President Donald Trump and Xi to sign this month to ease the nearly 16-month trade war.
The process has been clouded by wrangling over U.S. demands for a timetable of Chinese purchases of U.S. farm products. (Reporting by John Ruwitch and Winni Zhou Editing by Shri Navaratnam)