BEIJING – China’s President Xi Jinping is set to meet world leaders in Davos next week where he will preach the advent of a new world order, in addition to promoting “inclusive globalization”.
Xi Jinping will become the first Chinese president to attend the World Economic Forum. He is set to discuss globalization with his counterparts who are facing an uprising from voters against their orthodoxy of open markets and borders.
Chinese officials say their leader will also warn that populist approaches can lead to “war and poverty”.
Jinping will give a keynote speech on Tuesday that is expected to extol Beijing’s efforts to negotiate new types of regional trade deals shorn of US influence.
While leading economists stress China is in no position yet to replace the United States as a global hegemon, Xi will likely articulate China’s vision for the world economic and political order in Davos.
If Xi is the star turn, Chinese business leaders will also be out in force in Davos. Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry will be on hand from the outgoing US administration, along with new UN chief Antonio Guterres and ministers representing 70 countries.
The annual conclave of the World Economic Forum in going to be held in the Swiss Alps, grouping 3,000 delegates from the worlds of government, business, science and the arts.
This year’s forum, from January 17-20, is expected to be dominated by discussion of a surge in public hostility toward globalization and the rise of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, whose tough talk on trade, including promises of tariffs against China and Mexico, helped win him the White House. Trump will be sworn in on January 20.
In Davos, the new US administration will be represented in Davos by Anthony Scaramucci, a flamboyant hedge-fund investor who is part of Trump’s transition team.
As Donald Trump is inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States, the consensus of a rules-based global order led by Washington is threatened by communist China’s inexorable rise.
‘One Belt, One Road’
In 2004, China overtook France. In 2005, it surpassed the United Kingdom. A year later it left Germany behind. In 2009, it dethroned Japan. And now it has set its sights on the No 1 spot. Never before in history has a country achieved such an unprecedented and phenomenal economic growth.
More recently, President Xi Jinping unveiled the ‘one belt, one road’ initiative to revive the silk route during his visit to Kazakhstan in 2013.
Currently, China relies on the South China Sea for over 80% of its trade. Chinese shipping containers pass through a narrow strip in the Straits of Malacca where the United States military has a huge presence.
But the ‘one belt, one road’ initiative has caused concerns in the West, particularly in the United States. There are fears that China, through its initiative, will change the rules of the game as far as the world trade is concerned and may lead to confrontation among the big powers.
China’s initiative proposes six corridors that include New Eurasian Land Bridge, China-Mongolia-Russia, China-Central Asia-West Asia, China-Indochina, China-Pakistan, and Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar.
This plan would eventually connect 65 countries through air, road and sea for increased trade which would be to the tune of $2.5 trillion.
This year’s Davos ‘may be the start of China’s new role as a leader in promoting globalization and a speedy recovery of the global economy’, as Western countries turn to ‘isolationist self-centredness’, according to China’s official Xinhua news service.