Global Outlook 2017: China’s rocky year

Chinese President Xi Jinping gives a speech at the 2017 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland
At the World Economic Forum, President Xi Jinping reiterated China’s commitment to globalization and openness, ideals the U.S. now seems to be rejecting (source: dpa)
  • Donald Trump’s election in the U.S. brings a lot of uncertainty to Chinese policy
  • Beijing may be tested on trade, Taiwan and the South China Sea
  • However, it also has an opportunity to fill a vacuum left by the U.S. internationally

If 2016 was a year of decisions, then 2017 is a year of consequences. For China, most of these consequences come from decisions taken across the Pacific by the American people, who voted for a president committed to challenging Beijing. The election of Donald Trump brings China a great deal of change and uncertainty. This will exacerbate existing challenges for the Communist Party leadership, most notably China’s decreasing trade surplus, the “One-China” policy and tensions in the South China Sea, as well as internal tensions such as the succession of the Party leadership and unrest in the labor market.

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