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The workings of the new global economic order – Australia as a case study of how new rising powers shape economics and policies

Across ministries, businesses, think tanks, universities, newspapers and blogs, the world is busy trying to analyse the implications of a changing international economic order, triggered by the rise of emerging Asia in general, and of China in particular.

What will this reallocation in the distribution of financial power from the traditional players to the new powers mean for the developed world? Mark Thirlwell, Director of the International Economy program at the Lowy Institute, Australia’s leading international policy think tank, will describe how Australia’s recent experience provides an interesting case study of life in China’s economic orbit.

Last year, more than one in every four dollars Australia earned in exports came from sales to China, and the country is by far the single biggest recipient of Chinese non-financial investment.

Economic engagement with China has helped transform Australia’s economic fortunes and contributed to turning the country into one of the world’s best performing developed economies. But it has also forced policymakers to grapple with a series of challenges, ranging from setting policies to deal with Chinese investment through adapting to significant structural change on to juggling the complex three-way relationship between Canberra’s traditional security ally in Washington and its new economic partner in Beijing.

Event materials

Summary of the event here

Mark Thirlwell, presentation - Australia in China's orbit here