China moves in as U.S. pulls back from global institutions


By Shawn Donnan
Financial Times, London
Saturday, October 14, 2017

WASHINGTON -- The prospect of a wave of "America First" protectionism and tax reform in the United States has loomed large over this week's annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

Yet across dozens of public events a Trump administration that has been advertising its disregard for multilateral institutions has been largely absent.

Filling in is a China eager to assume the place of the United States as the new advocate for economic openness and international co-operation.

... Dispatch continues below ...


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Preparations and manoeuvrings ahead of next week's Communist Party Congress in Beijing prompted many senior Chinese officials to send deputies to sit in for them in Washington this week.

But they have still come in numbers and armed with a message.

"This is an important opportunity for us," Shi Yaobin, the country's deputy finance minister, told a packed room at the bank on Thursday, pointing to "profound change" under way in the world and growing questions about the future of globalisation. "No one country alone can solve all the problems we are facing now. So we have to strengthen our international co-operation. This is the only way out to solve the problems we are facing." ...

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