China’s impressive economic achievements are the result of gradually relying more on market forces to shape economic outcomes – albeit with the state still setting the priorities. The question now is whether the new leadership can find the right balance between allowing the market to play the ‘decisive’ role envisaged in the Third Plenum while preserving a ‘leading’ role for the CCP.
Whether North Korea becomes a problem for China will not depend on the results of the congress or Trump’s tweets, but rather on the actions (or accidents) of Kim Jong-un as he sprints to obtain a nuclear strike capability.
The heartening – and, for Americans, deeply sad – reality about this particular crisis is that neither Trump nor Pyongyang feel any fealty to the truth. Neither side believes the other will take his remarks at face value, and both sides seem to understand that the other rarely follows through.