Risks & Trends

China's Grand Strategy
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1 | 'Wolf Warriors Killed China’s Grand Strategy—and We'll All Come to Miss It'

‘The predominant feature of Chinese conduct today is not grand strategy but a belligerent, defensive nationalism that lashes out without heed of consequences.’ Sometime in 2020, China came unmoored from its grand strategy.
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
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2 | Blame It on Xi

‘In China’s case, the Xi era has seen the accumulation of somewhat counterproductive policies that catalyzed a breakdown.’
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
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3 | Enter the ‘Wolf Warriors’

‘What changed in 2020 was that nationalism for its own sake became the predominant motif of Chinese conduct.’
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
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4 | Why China Abandoned Its Grand Strategy

‘The most persuasive explanation is that China has poisoned itself through its own rhetoric.’
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
5

5 | Two Caveats

‘Highlighting the strategic questionability of China’s policies doesn’t mean that Beijing’s fears of the outside world are completely unjustified.’
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
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6 | The Risks & the Dangers

‘The real danger is that once toxin has spread through the system, there is no knowing where it will end.’
Jun 3, 2021
Foreign Policy
Sulmaan Wasif Khan | The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomcy, Tufts University and the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping
China's Grand Strategy
0

Killing China's Grand Strategy

Trend: Under the Xi Jinping administration, China has amped up abrasive ‘Wolf Warrior’ diplomacy; cracked down within its borders, despite protests and criticisms from other countries; become increasing bellicose in responding to those protests and criticisms, and any other pushback it doesn’t like; and increased its aggressive rhetoric and actions against neighbors. Risks: If this sounds like a problem just for the world’s Ministries of Foreign Affairs, think again – the impact extends deep into business and finance.
Jun 3, 2021
CHINADebate
Malcolm Riddell
Founder of CHINADebate
Malcolm Riddell
Founder of CHINADebate
China's demographic challenges
5

'Sex and the Chinese Economy'

‘A rise in China’s male-female ratio may have contributed to between one-third and one-half of the increase in its trade surplus with other countries.’ ‘The sex imbalance thus likely underpins an important source of tension between China and the US. Yet bilateral engagement has paid scant attention to this linkage.’
May 27, 2021
Project Syndicate
Shang-Jin Wei
Professor, Columbia University & former Chief Economist, Asian Development Bank
Shang-Jin Wei
Professor, Columbia University & former Chief Economist, Asian Development Bank
China's demographic challenges
0

'Demography + Technology is Destiny'

The census showed that the number of births nationwide fell to the lowest level since 1961, following a nationwide, manmade, famine caused by Mao’s “Great Leap Forward” that killed tens of millions of people, and that China’s total population could peak in the next few years.
May 27, 2021
CHINADebate
China's demographic challenges
4

'China Bets on Productivity Over Population to Drive Its Economy'

‘Beijing has a two-pronged approach to maintaining economic growth as its population shrinks.’ ‘First, it intends to slow the decline of the urban workforce by raising the retirement age and encouraging migration of more of the country’s 510 million rural residents to cities.’ ‘Second, it plans to raise productivity -- a measure of economic output per worker -- with the latest five-year plan emphasizing better vocational education and more investment in scientific research, automation and digital infrastructure.’ [see second chart above]
May 27, 2021
Bloomberg
China's demographic challenges
2

'China: Births Falling'

‘China’s total population could peak in the next few years, spurring profound changes for the world’s second-biggest economy.’
May 27, 2021
Bloomberg
China's demographic challenges
3

'Lousy demographics will not stop China’s rise'

‘The old maxim ‘demography is destiny’ no longer holds in the same way that it used to.’ ‘A shrinking and ageing population may not have the same gloomy implications in the 21st century.’
May 27, 2021
Financial Times
Gideon Rachman | Financial Times
China's demographic challenges
4

'China: Getting Old Before Getting Rich'

‘Over the past two generations, China has seen a collapse in fertility, exacerbated by Beijing’s ruthless population-control programs.’ ‘With decades of extremely low fertility in its immediate past, decades more of that to come, and no likelihood of mass immigration, China will see its population peak by 2027.’
May 27, 2021
Foreign Affairs
Nicholas Eberstadt | American Enterprise Institute
China's demographic challenges
1

'Why Demographics is (Close to) Destiny'

‘Demographics may not be destiny, but for students of geopolitics, they come close.’
May 27, 2021
Foreign Affairs
Nicholas Eberstadt | American Enterprise Institute
After Xi
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After Xi: A Succession Crisis to Rock the World

A new risk to add to your analyses and strategic planning: A succession crisis in China. By removing term limits on his stay in office and by not naming a successor, Secretary General Xi Jinping ‘has pushed China towards a potential destabilising succession crisis, one with profound implications for the international order and global commerce,’ writes Richard McGregor of the Lowy Institute and Jude Blanchette of the Center for Strategic & International Studies
May 15, 2021
CHINADebate
Malcolm Riddell
Founder of CHINADebate
Malcolm Riddell
Founder of CHINADebate

Invitation to a Trivium Flash Talk: 'China's Data Environment from a Big-Picture Perspective.’

‘This talk is designed to cut through the tech and legal jargon, and lay out the top-level strategic rationale underpinning China's thinking on data. We'll cover:’
May 15, 2021
Trivium
After Xi
1

'After Xi: China's potentially destabilising succession crisis'

‘By removing de jure term limits on the office of the presidency — and thus far refusing to nominate his successor for this and his other leadership positions — Xi has solidified his own authority at the expense of the most important political reform of the last four decades: the regular and peaceful transfer of power.’ ‘In doing so, he has pushed China towards a potential destabilising succession crisis, one with profound implications for the international order and global commerce.’
May 15, 2021
Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS)
Richard McGregor | Lowy Institute
Jude Blanchette | Center for Strategic & International Studies

'Regime change in China is not only possible, it is imperative.'

‘We must make regime change in China the highest goal of our strategy towards that country.’ ‘The US and its allies cannot dictate to China the political system by which it is governed. But they can and must engineer conditions which embolden and enable those in China who also want regime change to achieve it.’
May 15, 2021
Roger Garside
Roger Garside | former British diplomat in Beijing, development banker, & capital market development advisor, and author of Coming Alive: China After Mao and a new book China Coup: The Great Leap to Freedom.
After Xi
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‘Scenario Four: Unexpected Death or Incapacitation'

‘Even if the CCP’s claim that Xi Jinping has no designs to remain in office for life is true, his evisceration of succession norms leaves the country ill-prepared for his sudden death or incapacitation.’
Apr 21, 2021
Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS)
Richard McGregor | Lowy Institute
Jude Blanchette | Center for Strategic & International Studies
After Xi
2

‘Scenario One & Two: Xi Steps Down'

‘In this scenario, Xi thwarts the current consensus by handing over his leadership positions to at least one individual from the current Politburo Standing Committee (as per existing regulations).’
Apr 21, 2021
Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS)
Richard McGregor | Lowy Institute
Jude Blanchette | Center for Strategic & International Studies
After Xi
3

‘Scenario Three: Leadership Challenge or Coup

‘By removing de jure term limits on the office of the presidency — and thus far refusing to nominate his successor for this and his other leadership positions — Xi has solidified his own authority at the expense of the most important political reform of the last four decades: the regular and peaceful transfer of power.’
Apr 21, 2021
Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS)
Richard McGregor | Lowy Institute
Jude Blanchette | Center for Strategic & International Studies