Speaker: David Dollar, Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Global Economy and Development, John L. Thornton China Center, Brookings Institution
China has gotten COVID-19 under control and is poised to bounce back strongly with 8% growth in 2021. But in the medium term, it faces daunting domestic and external challenges. On the domestic side, demographic shifts will result in a declining labor force and put a premium on geographic mobility, especially rural-urban migration. Also, over-reliance on investment has led to an alarming rise in debt to GDP, risking a financial crisis. To grow well while managing these issues of labor and investment will require more innovation as a source of growth. On the external side, the trade war with the U.S. is not likely to be resolved quickly with the new Biden administration. China’s recent agreements with Asian partners and Europe, however, provide new opportunities that complement domestic reforms.
David Dollar is a senior fellow in the John L. Thornton China Center at the Brookings Institution and host of the Brookings trade podcast, Dollar&Sense. He is a leading expert on China’s economy and U.S.-China economic relations. From 2009 to 2013, Dollar was the U.S. Treasury’s economic and financial emissary to China, based in Beijing, facilitating the macroeconomic and financial policy dialogue between the United States and China. Prior to joining Treasury, Dollar worked 20 years for the World Bank, serving as country director for China and Mongolia, based in Beijing (2004-2009). His other World Bank assignments focused on Asian economies, including South Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Bangladesh, and India. Dollar also worked in the World Bank’s research department. His publications focus on economic reform in China, globalization, and economic growth. He also taught economics at University of California Los Angeles, during which time he spent a semester in Beijing at the Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in 1986. He has a doctorate in economics from New York University and a bachelor’s in Chinese history and language from Dartmouth College.