Since 1980, China has evolved from a poor and mostly rural society into one of the largest economies in the world. As it grew into a major industrial power, it demanded enormous amounts of steel for new factories and cities, copper for electronic wires, petroleum for cars and manufacturing plants, and soybeans and cattle to feed its workers. By the 1990s, many Latin American countries were riding China's coattails and beginning to prosper from the new demand. Ever since China entered the World Trade Organization at the turn of the century, Latin America supplied China with more and more of the primary commodities it needs and more. That in turn has produced one the most impressive periods of economic growth on the continent in fifty years. And it was more evenly spread too - a region infamous for its extreme inequality saw it decline by a couple of percentage points over the course of the era.
In The China Triangle, Kevin P. Gallagher traces the development of the China-Latin America trade over time and covers how it has affected the centuries-old (and highly unequal) US-Latin American relationship. He argues that despite these opportunities Latin American nations have little to show for riding the coattails of the 'China Boom' and now face significant challenges in the next decades as China's economy slows down and shifts more toward consumption and services. While the Latin American region saw significant economic growth due to China's rise over the past decades, Latin Americans saved very little of the windfall profits it earned even as the region saw a significant hollowing of its industrial base. What is more, commodity-led growth during the China boom reignited social and environmental conflicts across the region.
Scholars and reporters have covered the Chinese expansion into East Asia, Southeast Asia, Australasia, Africa, the US, and Europe. Yet China's penetration Latin America is as little understood as it is significant-especially for America given its longstanding ties to the region. Gallagher provides a clear overview of China's growing economic ties with Latin America and points to ways that Latin American nations, China, and even the United States can act in order to make the next decades of China-Latin America economic activity more prosperous for all involved.
After the 2008–9 global financial crisis, reforms to promote stability, social inclusion, and sustainability were promised but not delivered. As a result, the global economic situation, marred by inequality, volatility, and climate breakdown, remains dysfunctional. Now, the economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic offers us a second chance. Kevin Gallagher and Richard Kozul-Wright argue that we must grasp it by implementing sweeping reforms to how we govern global money, finance, and trade. Without global leaders prepared to boldly rewrite the rules to promote a prosperous, just, and sustainable post-Covid world economic order – a Bretton Woods moment for the twenty-first century – we risk being engulfed by climate chaos and political dysfunction. This book provides a blueprint for change that no one interested in the future of our planet can afford to miss.
This book shows how regional cooperation and integration have increased massively in scale and scope in recent years, as developing countries seek new ways to shield themselves from economic turbulence and to kick-start their economies in the face of stagnant global demand. The trend is partly a defense mechanism against the limitations of the international financial system, but also reflects a wider search for new and different growth paths more appropriate with developing countries' increasing economic and political voice. As a consequence, the landscape of financial and monetary mechanisms has changed dramatically, especially in the ten years since the economic crisis of 2007-2008.