And the conceit that rules for trade and investment in the Indo-Pacific can set by arrangements that exclude China, like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), is preposterous. One study estimates, for example, that a relatively modest five percent growth rate in such assets from their current base could create 137 million tons of demand for Chinese steel. As another example, consider the benefits of shorter, land-based telecommunications routes that connect the two ends of the "world island." Doing this is how one repositions oneself to future advantage. And below are my reflections on the geopolitics of US-China decoupling, and what it means for global affairs in the coming years and decades. For the past two decades, China has devoted about 9 percent of GDP to the enhancement of domestic infrastructure. Reflecting on Chimerica in 2009, Ferguson wondered whether it would speed up China's rise and delink it from American consumption. Regional economic integration has enabled countries to focus on issues that are relevant to their stage of development as well as encourage trade between neighbors. Economics Biden, Like Trump, Will Deepen Integration With China Over the past four years, economic ties between Beijing and the rest of the world have only strengthened. Some elements of the process are the result of political choices, notably Donald Trump’s trade war, but many are structural; some play into the narrative of looming, near-inevitable conflict between the two superpowers as China’s rise continues; others point in different directions. But it is not likely to be direct (on that point the Golden Arches theory lives on). Starting with Japan in the 1950s, East Asian countries have consecutively taken part in the global economic system and have become connected with each other through the market economy. And on Investment Monitor, there are features exploring whether Covid-19 has delivered a death blow to US-China FDI, and how drops in Chinese investment have a bigger impact on Trump-voting states. Do also look out for the next episode of our World Review podcast, on which Emily and I will be joined by Courtney Fingar of Investment Monitor and Sommer Mathis of City Monitor (another new NSMG site, focused on urbanism) to discuss US-China decoupling and other mega-stories that define the backdrop to the US election. It tells a complicated story, of US-China entanglement in some fields but not in others. Washington has lost intellectual command and practical control of geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific region. More to the point, the United States has recently shown neither the will nor the political capacity to muster the means to adapt the Bretton Woods institutions to this century's economic realities and development requirements. In early October it handed out some $1.5m – in Shenzhen, of course – to test a digitisation of the renminbi that Chinese officials hope will help lead to a counterbalance to the dollar. They believe that their vision has the potential to be as transformative as Deng's "reform and opening" has been over the past thirty-seven years. In support of this, China seeks to inspire mergers, acquisitions, and green-field investments to create what might be called "multinational companies with Chinese characteristics," some with headquarters in Europe or elsewhere outside China. China is connected to Europe at present by 39,000 kms (about 24,000 miles) of mostly underwater cable following legacy telephone links. China is now near the heart of the global capitalist economy. International correspondent Ido Vock has charted the ways in which the flow of people and culture between US and China’s societies may have levelled off or may even be in retreat. So the nice ideas of the 1990s and 2000s can be put to rest. Shorter routes are the keys to speed – and profit.  And routes under Chinese, Russian, and European control will arguably be more secure from exploitation by the much-feared U.S. National Security Agency. Some forms of bilateral trade and investment may continue healthily. Supply chains for computers and other electronic products criss-crossed the Pacific – a large part of Apple's production takes place at the Longhua complex on the edge of Shenzhen – and as China became wealthier, more investment started to flow in the other direction, into the US economy, where Chinese investors hoovered up stakes in car makers, technology firms and energy generation. An opening contribution of $10 billion – some of which will go to Silk Road projects – has gone into the BRICS-led New Development Bank. Elsewhere on the New Statesman, Emily Tamkin reports on its impact on the US election, and Ido Vock and Michael Goodier chart the social ties between the two countries. Despite many internal problems, it is currently outplaying all rivals, including the United States and Japan. It would expand access to markets and natural resources to China's West, while linking both to the Chinese economy. The U.S.-China economic relationship has reached a critical juncture. The China expert Julian Gewirtz describes three schools of thought in the Chinese elite today: those who embrace the ongoing interdependence of the two economies; those who think Beijing should use that interdependence to “win” the trade war; and those who want to cut the dependence. Asian economy is already in many respects Sino-centric less than one-third ten years ago through! The American and Japanese decision to boycott the Asian infrastructure investment Bank related! 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