China Daily, People's Republic of China

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Hysterical U.S. Response to AIIB Diminishes American Influence (Huanqiu, China)


How badly has the American response to the creation of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, an emerging rival to the World Bank and the global financial architecture that has existed since the end of WWII, damaged the standing of the United States? This editorial from China's state-run Huanqiu advises Chinese leaders not to get carried away with their own success and Washington's embarrassment, lest hubris cost Beijing more points than the U.S. has lost.




Translated By John Chan


April 7, 2015


People's Republic of China - Huanqiu - Original Article (Chinese)

With the initial stages of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) proving a major success, there are many interpretations within world public opinion about the geopolitics of its creation, and which include lots of booing – even in Chinese media.


It must be pointed that the "geopolitical interpretations" of the AIIB's legality originate from with Washington's political elite and other U.S. decision makers. This has not only practically sidelined the United States to a considerable degree, but has profoundly distorted many people's perceptions about this new development.



While the number of economies that have sought to become founding members of the AIIB has far exceeded expectations, the United States has publicly discouraged its allies from joining at all. This is perhaps why this unexpected success has so sparked the political imagination of the international community. When something creates a global sensation like this, there are bound to be political implications – and the AIIB is no exception.


The AIIB has disrupted the existing global financial system, which is part of the basic framework of the global order. When the U.S. attempted to protect the existing financial status quo by boycotting the AIIB, it highlighted the bank's political implications. The result is that Washington overestimated its own appeal and lost influence on the issue.


After the World Bank expressed a willingness to cooperate with the bank and work on joint projects, the United States changed its attitude, bringing the political end game over the newly-initiated financial institution into view. Yet this episode will not vanish like a meteor traversing the sky, but will long reverberate through international politics.


Yet one should not exaggerate the aftermath. The founding of the Asian International Investment Back should not be seen as harbinger of geopolitical events or a measure of the balance of power between China and the United States. While it shows the limits of American hegemony, it does not mean that the decline of American dominance will be gradually replaced by an alternative hegemony. It is nevertheless true that America's attempt to throw a wrench into the works has proven very unpopular and so has diminished U.S. influence.



As the future unfolds, the China-led investment bank will adhere to accepted global practices in finance and trade, and we will devote ourselves to fulfilling our original committment to make the AIIB an international institution that acts beyond the interests of any single nation. If China were to begin playing geopolitics because the United States lost the game, it is unlikely that China would gain. In fact it might well be the opposite: China might lose more than the Americans.


In a certain sense, competition is in the very nature of investment banking, and in this case was advantageous to China. Meanwhile, the United States ultimately embarrassed itself, rendering our public opinion quite pleased. Some used the opportunity to take cheap shots at the United States, but on the whole this is not a common circumstance. China's academic circles should be on high alert not to reflect public opinion when it smacks of opportunism.

Posted By Worldmeets.US,


China's renaissance will be a long process. China's economy will continue to be buffeted by external events and be examined geopolitically by outside analysts; hence in many cases the geopolitical significance is greater than zero. Yet China must not be led by the nose by external events and let its economy be impacted by geopolitical brinksmanship. It is necessary to diminish the impact of geopolitical elements and concentrate on the economy itself.


China's economy gives us an advantage and is a source of significant global leverage, whereas geopolitics, while it often looks like a point of advantage, is most often like a swamp or trap. Win-win cooperation is almost never a part of the Western geopolitical dictionary. Rather, its habit of zero-sum thinking suggests a far different future. Instead, China's future success is likely to depend on our capacity to advance down the path of win-win cooperation and expand the number of those who benefit from the equation.



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[Posted By Worldmeets.US, April 7, 2015, 7:49am]








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