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With an ailing domestic economy, can China still pursue its global plans? | Richard McGregor

With an ailing domestic economy, can China still pursue its global plans? | Richard McGregor thumbnail

Soaring unemployment and a struggling economy must be tackled before its leaders can return to threats and bluster

What next in Beijing’s master plan for China’s global advancement? Anyone looking for details would have struggled to find them last week at the press conference held by Li Keqiang, with the Chinese premier much more focused on the ruling party’s perils on the home front. 

The “wolf warrior” diplomacy, the world of blustering threats that Beijing has been using to bend countries to its bidding, was absent. Instead Li’s focus in the 90-minute event was much more that of a nerdy economic policymaker. In the kind of minute detail redolent of the boss of a small provincial city, the premier listed an array of support measures for the economy: tax cuts for small business, reforms to medical and unemployment insurance, and support for the gig economy.

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