The Abacus

Australia and China Have Shaped Each Other’s Destinies

By: ACBC National

This week, Emeritus Professor Peter Drysdale, Head of the Asian Bureau of Economic Research and Editor-in-Chief of East Asia Forum in the Crawford School of Public Policy at The Australian National University, wrote on the progress made by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and its decades long cooperation and complementarity with Australia’s economy in the lead up to the 70th anniversary since the country’s founding.

In the piece, Professor Drysdale acknowledges how the birth of the PRC has “come to define the parameters of most of Australia’s big economic and political choices in the world.” Central to this has been China’s “initially tentative but strategic choice to reform.”

Professor Drysdale argues that “it is the transformation of Asia’s economy, the impact it’s had on the structure of world power, and the multilateral framework within which it thrives that are top Australian security priorities right now.” He also acknowledged the instrumental role Australia played in China’s accession to the WTO and working with China’s huge resource trade dependence in the 1980s.

“China succeeded in lifting 800 million people of poverty in a relatively short time because it profoundly changed the way it engaged with the rest of the world through these initiatives. Its reforms were propelled and deepened by the international rules to which it signed on and has substantially adhered since accession to the WTO.”

In a time of increased paranoia and protectionism across the international trade regime, Professor Drysdale argues that “it is properly functioning markets that have delivered these strong bilateral trade outcomes” that have greatly benefited Australia and China.

He also attributes the success of the China Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) in shaping the economic bilateral relationship despite five politically difficult years in the relationship.

Professor Drysdale calls upon the leadership of both nations to “enunciate the substantial strategic interests both countries have come to share over the past 40 years” in order to deal with the growing protectionist threat that risks destabilising the international trading order that has so advantageous to both Australia and China.

For full article from the Australian Financial Review, click on link below:




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