Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
ASEAN: A nexus of conflict and prosperity
For the first time since the Vietnam War, Southeast Asia has become a cockpit for great-power rivalries. China’s inexorable rise has split the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which had become a regional broker for peace and prosperity. The ASEAN countries have the demographics and infrastructure to leapfrog into the ranks of the advanced economies, but everything depends on whether China’s growing dominance can be accommodated peacefully.
2018 Global Outlook: World trade
After a surprisingly good 2017, world trade should do even better this year. But that doesn’t mean that Europe and the United States can afford to be passive. China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which will turn most of Asia into a privileged trade zone, demands a choice – either join the initiative or promote free trade outside it. For now, the West is doing neither.
Debate: What China’s new Silk Road means for Europe
In a debate last month in Warsaw, politicians, bankers and businessmen considered the implications for Europe of China's Belt and Road Initiative – likely to be Eurasia's largest infrastructure project in this century. It is both an economic opportunity and a portent of growing Chinese preeminence on the continent.
Global trends: TPP holds key for developments in Asia-Pacific
East Asia’s geopolitical future over the next 18 to 24 months will hinge on whether the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact is implemented as planned. Last year 12 countries – including Japan and the United States, but excluding South Korea and China – concluded talks on the text of the agreement. However, the deal still faces several hurdles, not least of w...
IMF puts itself in a fix as it bends rules to bail out Ukraine
On December 18, 2015, the government of Ukraine announced it had no intention of honoring a $3 billion Eurobond loan owed to Russia that would mature on December 20. Given the cross-default clause written into that bond, under British law, this was a momentous decision. It gave the Kremlin the right to have Ukraine declared in sovereign default, which would have pr...
China’s infrastructure initiative, part 2: Investment opportunities and security risks – Beijing’s balancing act
Beijing is bolstering its One Belt, One Road (OBOR) programme through huge foreign direct investments and the creation of new financial institutions to fund its related projects. So far, China has launched the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, played a major role in the development of the New Development Bank and established a Silk Road Fund. But success will r...
Partnership with China may be risky attraction for France
China’s interest in closer relations with France presents an impressive array of opportunities and risks. Economically, China’s hunger for technology and resources and France’s need for cash and markets make for a good fit between the partners. Yet Paris must weigh the benefits of Realpolitik against the dangers of strengthening a global competitor who may be seeki...
China slowdown raises questions over military and social spending
China is stepping up its monetary and fiscal measures to stimulate the economy. But how great are the risks? A January 2015 Deutsche Bank report states that ‘China will likely face the worst fiscal challenge since 1981’ as fast-falling land sales - long the lifeblood of fiscal revenue - result in local government income contracting by two per cent. GIS guest expert...