Global Financial Crisis: Chinese Leader Fingers ‘Excess Chase Of Profit’ At World Economic Forum

FILE - In this Jan. 6, 2020, file photo, Chinese President Xi Jinping stands during a welcome ceremony for Kiribati's President Taneti Maamau at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Xi will visit neighboring Myanmar amid efforts to strengthen relations with members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, File)

BEVERLY HILLS, January 25, (THEWILL) – China’s President, Xi Jinping, has blamed what he called excess chase of profit by financial players and a great failure of appropriate regulation for the global financial crisis that has plagued the world economy.

He also defended economic globalization as a necessity in a world that is undergoing rapid transformation and fast becoming a global village.

Xi Jinping made these remarks in his first speech at the 51st World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting which kicked off in Davos Switzerland on Monday January 26.

According to him, economic globalization, though has its new challenges, should not be held entirely responsible for the global financial crisis upsetting legitimate economic activities and reinforcing inequalities.

He urged countries to see the benefits of globalization and to fine-tune its problems to make it adaptable to all players, instead of using it to justify the greed inherent in the protectionist and nationalistic agenda of the West.

“Some people blame economic globalization for the chaos in our world. Economic globalization was once viewed as the treasure cave found by Ali Baba in the Arabian nights, but now it has become the Pandora’s Box”, he said.

He stated that the world’s problems could not simply be laid at globalization’s door, from the ‘heart-breaking’ refugee crisis to the financial crisis.

“The international financial crisis is another example, it is not an inevitable outcome of economic globalization, rather it is the consequence of the excessive chase of profit by financial capital and a great failure of financial regulation,” he said.

Xi Jinping added: “It is true that economic globalization has created new problems. But this is no justification to write off economic globalization altogether.

“Rather we should adapt to and guide globalization, cushion its negative impact, and deliver its benefits to all countries and all nations,” he said.

President Xi said that “the global economy is the big ocean you cannot escape from” and that China had “learned how to swim.”

He pointed out that China has become the world’s second-largest economy after 38 years of reform and opening up.

“China’s development is an opportunity for the world; China has not only benefited from economic globalization but also contributed to it.

“We should commit ourselves to growing an open global economy,” he said. “No one will emerge as the winner in a trade war.”

President Xi said that China has no intention to boost its trade development by devaluing the Renminbi still less by launching a currency war.

He pleaded for co-operation in turbulent times as no challenge, no matter however daunting, will stop mankind from advancing.

“World history shows that the road of human civilization has never been a smooth one and that mankind has made progress by surmounting difficulty.

“No difficulty, however daunting, will stop mankind from advancing.

“When encountering difficulty, we should not complain, blame others, or run away from responsibilities; instead, we should join hands and rise to the challenge. History is made by the brave.”

“Guided by science, reason and humanitarian spirit, the world has achieved initial progress in fighting COVID-19,” noting that “the pandemic is far from over.”

He added, “winter cannot stop the arrival of spring, and darkness can never shroud the light of dawn.”

President Xi said there is a need to balance COVID-19 responses with economic development: “We need to shift the driving forces and growth models of the global economy and improve its structure,” he said.

China, which has overtaken the United States in foreign direct investment, recently reported a 6.5 per cent gain in GDP for the fourth quarter of 2020.

This has pushed its growth for the full year to 2.3 per cent and put the country in a position to help lead the global economy out of a pandemic-induced downturn.

The WEF organisers said “this special address by Chinese President Xi Jinping comes at a crucial moment, as many countries struggle to bring the health crisis under control and as some observers anticipate a potential reset of relations between global powers following the US presidential election.

The 2021 edition of the WEF will be both in-person and virtual.