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Global leaders at conference in China warn on growing geopolitical competition

Boao Forum for Asia   -  
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Dake Kang/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved


World leaders at the annual Boao Forum for Asia on China’s Hainan Island delivered warnings about growing geopolitical competition, decoupling and fragmenting supply chains, 

Speaking Thursday at the Boao Forum, a major political and economic conference in southern China, IMF managing director Kristalina Georgieva called for global cooperation and solidarity in a time of high uncertainties and geopolitical tensions.

“We ought to guide our world economy to a safer future,” Georgieva said at the opening plenary of the forum in the southern Chinese island Hainan. “It has been in choppy waters for quite some time, experiencing shock upon shock upon shock.”

Citing uncertainties including impact of the war in Ukraine and supply chain disruptions, Georgieva urged the world to stand together to promote economic growth.

“We have learned that supply chains must be made more secure and more resilient,” she said.

Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim also called for unfettered competition to give way to collaboration in a time when geopolitical competition has become a feature for Asia.

“The rivalry to be ahead can take either a productive or destructive turn,” Ibrahim said. “We need to establish certain guardrails, so that the competition does not lead to bifurcation in the technological world, one that will raise cost and impede progress.”

Patrick Achi, Ivory Coast Prime Minister, said his country joined China’s Belt and Road initiative to promote development, and that he took China and other Asian countries as an inspiration for his own country’s economic growth.

“Unity is also essential to Africa. It is in this spirit that our country joined the belt and road initiative in 2018. This initiative promotes cooperation, free trade, and brotherly ties between Europe, Asia, and Africa,” he said.