Seminar Series – The Shifting Global Economic and Political Landscape: Integration or Fragmentation?

MR. ZHANG: (Speaking in Chinese) Good morning. Please be seated. Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Today we are very honored and pleased to have this seminar: The Shifting Global Economic and Political Landscape: Integration or Fragmentation?

This is a very big topic, not only about economy but also about politics. At our Research Institute of the CASS, Institute of World Economics and Politics, our direction of research is about world economics and politics, so that’s why we have chosen this topic together with the relevant departments of the IMF.

Economy and politics are intertwined with each other; without economy it is difficult for us to fully understand politics. Without politics it also sometimes makes us confused about the economy. Today’s world is presented with a lot of challenges as well as opportunities. The growth rate of the world has been slowing down, and with the rapid accumulation of debt, there are many different reasons but one of which is related to the intertwined relationship between the economics and politics.

Integration is a megatrend under the framework of globalization. There is increasing interdependence between the different economies and the politics. On the other side we see also that under the megatrend of globalization there is also the tendency of fragmentation. There is also the de-globalization, re-globalization, or anti-globalization, different phenomena, especially this U.S. Presidential Election, and during the campaign debate period.

And also during the process of the Presidential Election there were a lot of discussions about globalization, about the TPP, about free trade or trade protectionism. The President-elect, Mr. Trump, has a lot of his own opinions and proposals about the world economic policies, investment policies, and et cetera, but whether what he said during the election could be achieved, there’s a question mark, but this phenomenon is already enough to catch our attention.

During the election process, he also raised a series of proposals, talking about China manipulation of exchange rate, and about the penalty tariffs. As a think tank in China we are also concerned about these issues, the role of China’s economy and that of the world is massive. China’s growth has also been contributing a lot to the world economic growth, so the whole world also pays great attention to the development of China.

So, on behalf of the two organizers, it’s the CASS, and the second is Yicai (China Business News), so the two organizers. And first of all, I’d like to welcome Mr. Cai Fang, the Vice President of CASS, to share with us about his views, about the (inaudible) — the economy, and the world economy.

And Madam Yang Yanqing will be the Chairperson for the panel discussion part. We are very honored to have several panelists, especially Mr. David Lipton, IMF’s First Deputy Managing Director, and his colleagues. A little bit later, Yanqing will be moderating that session, so we will be talking about, and having discussions about: The Shifting Global Economic and Political Landscape, Integration or Fragmentation? Thank you. Mr. Cai, please?

MR. CAI: (Speaking in Chinese) Distinguished Guests, good morning. I would also thank Mr. Zhang. I am very pleased to be here for this meeting, and also I congratulate on the convening of this seminar: The Shifting Global Economic and Political Landscape: Integration or Fragmentation? And we know that one of the organizers is the Institute of World Economics and Politics of CASS, and Yicai (China Business News); so a very a famous think tank, and also a very famous financial newspaper, co-hosting this seminar.

We are also very pleased to have very authoritative speakers, such as Mr. David Lipton, IMF’s First Deputy Managing Director; and Professor Ian Bremmer; and Woo Wing Thye, Zhao Minghao; so all these people are very authoritative. And I also know that the people present here, the audience, also is the best.

I’m not an economist or expert on finance, and I’m not in the field of world economic research, so before you actually enjoy the brainstorming a little bit later, I would like to first of all, talk about the Chinese economy a little bit, because while we talk about the integration or fragmentation we always think about their implications for the Chinese economy.

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