China’s role in global economy not weakened amid geopolitical tensions: investment banker

Tourists shop at a duty-free shopping mall in Sanya City, south China's Hainan Province, Aug. 6, 2020. (Xinhua/Yang Guanyu)

WASHINGTON,  (Xinhua) – China’s role in the global economy has not been weakened amid escalating geopolitical tensions, and companies worldwide saw growth opportunities in Asia led by China, Douglas Flint, chairman of global investment firm Standard Life Aberdeen, has said.

“I think China is hugely important to the global economy and to global trade,” Flint told CNBC in a recent interview. “Seven months ago, every single company in the world virtually saw its growth opportunities in Asia, led by China. I don ‘t think that’s changed.”

He noted that geopolitical tensions have made it more difficult for business to operate and presented new challenges for companies, yet their relations with China remain strong.

“Having said that, at the business level, our own relationships with our counterparts and clients in China continues to be very strong. It is not impacted at that level, but obviously there’s an overriding political relationship that makes things difficult,” he said.

As the world witnessed a wider opening up of the Chinese economy, many US financial giants have started to expand their operations in China, such as BlackRock, Vanguard, and JP Morgan, despite harsh political rhetoric from the US side.

What’s happening on a commercial side, somewhat distant from the political rhetoric, indicates that the Chinese economy has been further merged into the global economy, according to Flint.   ■