China to the West: We'll help but don't rush us

Sat Jan 30, 2010 8:02pm EST
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By Natsuko Waki and Tamora Vidaillet - Analysis

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - The world turned its spotlight on attention-shy China at this year's gathering of business chiefs and policymakers, pleading it to lead a global recovery and wave its wand to solve economic imbalances.

It got a halfway positive response.

China sent its biggest ever delegation of 54 executives to Davos, with a keynote speech from Vice Premier Li Keqiang and panel appearances from the deputy central bank governor and the head of the country's biggest investment bank, symbolizing its status as a fully-fledged member of the world economy.

Despite that, the Chinese did their best to keep a low profile at the World Economic Forum, while firmly saying they would move at their own pace and on their terms and demanding the rest of the world pull its weight too.

China is trying to be a good citizen. Vice Premier Li and deputy central bank governor Zhu Min both pledged that Beijing would stick with moderately easy monetary policy even as the world's third largest economy is growing rapidly.

By not curbing its runaway growth too aggressively, China is keeping the engine of world growth running and trying to spur domestic demand -- a move which will help to correct global imbalances.

This stance won praise from senior officials, including the Group of 20 envoy from South Korea, this year's chair of the global forum, and International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

But China does not want to rush.   Continued...