This article originally published in South China Morning Post.
The ranking of the world's leading economists has remained essentially unchanged since 2006. Post-2008, we are hearing from the same people, mostly white males now in their 60's. Federico Fubini asks, "Might the world’s leading economists be so keen to protect their own ideas that they ignore (or, worse, stifle) innovation from unexpected quarters?"
The following remarks with subsequent modification were delivered at the November 6-8 convening of the International Finance Forum, headquartered in Beijing. IFF’s mission is to facilitate high-level, multilateral dialogue and promote insights about current issued defining the international economy. The writer is a member of the IFF Academic Committee.
Recent actions by Chinese authorities to rein in stock market volatility, depreciate the RMB and generally arrest actions they view as adverse to achieving requisite GDP growth raise questions that may end up overshadowing the worry about the economy’s fundamentals.
Authorities’ actions are giving rise to questions about the credibility of those who make the decisions and the capacity of those who advocate reforms to withstand pressures to achieve 7% GDP growth at all costs.
Economist Anotole Kaletsky has not joined the Greek chorus bemoaning the recent deal between Athens and the EU. He is instead refreshingly optimistic that it was a good deal for both sides, and is sustainable.
...the main conditions now seem to be in place for a sustainable recovery in Greece. Conventional wisdom among economists and investors has a long record of failing to spot major turning points; so the near-universal belief today that Greece faces permanent depression is no reason to despair.
“Foreign Affairs” ran a commentary by me on TPP, whose main message is that getting TPP right is better than getting it fast, for both economic and geopolitical reasons. But that will be very hard to do with the Obama administration’s current negotiating stance. Here is the URL: https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/asia/2015-05-12/trade-trials.
A truly dismal report card on international cooperation in a variety of spheres, ranging from health care to nuclear proliferation. Based on a survey of global think tanks in 23 countries, it is evident that the world’s thought leaders are pessimistic about the progress being made. Click here http://www.cfr.org/councilofcouncils/reportcard/#!/grades/2014 to view the report card by country and by issue.