The 30th CESA Annual Conference, University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, Australia, 15-17th July 2018

The 30th Annual Conference
Chinese Economics Society Australia (CESA)

China’s economy in Xi Jinping’s ‘New Era’

the cesa 30th annual conference

Sunday 15 – Tuesday 17 July 2018

University of Technology Sydney
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

This decade has been a seminal one for China’s economy. Consistently accounting for around one-third of global growth, China overtook the United States as the world’s largest economy in PPP terms in 2014. Many commentators expect that it will eclipse the scale of the United States at market exchange rates before 2030. The globalisation of its economy has also greatly expanded. In 2013 it became the world’s largest trading nation, while in 2016 it exported more capital than any other country apart from the United States.

At the recent 19th Party Congress in Beijing, Chinese President Xi Jinping made clear that he had no intention of letting China’s economic emergence stall now. While quantitative growth targets were downplayed compared with in the past, Xi’s ‘New Era’ sees China smashing through the “middle income trap”. There is now an obsessive focus on innovation and industrial upgrading in domestic economic policy. And China’s economic diplomacy has also ramped up, as demonstrated by the establishment of the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank in 2015, and potentially far more significantly, the unfolding Belt and Road Initiative. A richer China has the potential to increase its demand for overseas goods and services, supply more capital to developing countries that are desperately in need of it, as well as provide greater global public goods.

At the same time, none of this is guaranteed. There is the challenge of rising debt levels. China’s economy under Xi also appears to have re-emphasised the role of the state and many economists wonder whether this is consistent with the ongoing improvements in productivity that will be needed if living standards are to continue to rise. Across the Pacific, China’s economy faces a threat not simply from President Trump’s “America first” mantra. The willingness of the United States to take a harder line on China’s economic policies, such as its relative lack of openness to foreign investment and the fairness of the playing field on which its firms compete, now appears to have bipartisan political support. And while the Belt and Road might generally be welcomed overseas as a concept, the challenges of rolling it out in way that is transparent, with high governance standards, and that generates strong local development outcomes are immense.

This conference invites papers that address any of the above issues, as well as others related to China’s economy. Interdisciplinary contributions are also welcomed.

The 30th CESA Annual Conference is being hosted by the Australia-China Relations Institute (ACRI) with support from the ANU China Update.

Sydney is Australia’s largest city and commercial capital. It is perhaps best known for its stunning landmarks, such as the Sydney Opera House with its distinctive sail-like design, the arched Harbour Bridge and beautiful beaches. Sydney is also highly cosmopolitan: Chinese-born residents account for 4.7 percent of Sydney’s 4.8 million population, compared to 3.1 percent from England. The climate is sunny and mild and there is always plenty to do from world-class dining and entertainment to magnificent sightseeing.

CESA plans to select a group of high quality papers presented at the conference for special issues at journals such as China & World Economy (Guest Editor: Prof ZHANG Zhongxiang) and others. Papers submitted for consideration in special issues will still need to go through the regular review process. Details about these publication opportunities will be provided in due course.

Further conference information can be found at the CESA website:
A conference website will be launched soon.

Dr Xunpeng Shi
ACRI, UTS, PO Box 123, Broadway NSW 2007, Australia
Tel: +61 2 91432000

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