Could Donald Trump force China to take over the leadership of the world economy? China says it does not want that role, but if the president carries out his pledge to isolate the U.S., it could happen.
A senior Chinese diplomat said Monday that Trump’s pledge to “put America first,’ in his all-important first press conference could force China into the number one position, according to Newsweek. Director General Of The Chinese Foreign Ministry International Economics Department Zhang Jun briefed foreign journalists about President Xi Jinping’s trip to Switzerland just a week ago.
At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Xi showed China could be the leader of a global economy at a time when the only solution to major problems is international cooperation.
Xi encouraged countries to work against isolation, just days before Trump’s inauguration. If necessary, Xi is perfectly willing to become the new world economic leader. He said China would replace the U.S., if necessary.
Zhang said China is not seeking the position of world leader, but according to Newsweek, he continued:
‘If anyone were to say China is playing a leadership role in the world I would say it’s not China rushing to the front but rather the front-runners have stepped back leaving the place to China.
‘If China is required to play that leadership role then China will assume its responsibilities.’
Trump spoke to his base during his inauguration speech Friday. He spoke of the rusted factories as “tombstones” and pledged to stop “American carnage” and crime.
Even though the U.S. has long held the first place in world economic leadership, China is running a strong second. Newsweek reported that Zhang said:
‘We still hope that the United States and other Western economies can continue to make an even bigger contribution to the world economic recovery. We’ve heard Trump announce that the United States will achieve 4 percent growth and we’re very happy about that.’
Trump’s claim is that the U.S. middle class has been decimated by offshoring jobs, particularly manufacturing jobs. He did not mention China by name, but it was not necessary. Walmart alone has shipped 30,000 factories to China. Trump used this bully pulpet to threaten China with serious tariffs on imported Chinese products.
Zhang noted in Newsweek that Trump would have a difficult time reaching his economic growth goals if he was caught in the middle of trade wars:
‘A trade war or an exchange rate war won’t be advantageous to any country.’
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Xi sent Trump his congratulations, after Donald Trump took office.
Check out this English/Chinese News video about Trump:
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