Handbook on China and Globalization
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Handbook on China and Globalization

Edited by Huiyao Wang and Lu Miao

An excellent guide for understanding the trends, challenges and opportunities facing China through globalization, this Handbook answers the pertinent questions regarding the globalization process and China’s influence on the world.
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Chapter 20: China and global economic governance: does BRICS matter?

Huanyu Zhao


Despite the flourishing debate over the rise of China and the puzzle of the evolution of BRICS, the extant literature has offered a relatively limited exploration of the extent to which the BRICS is important for China in the global economic governance context. This chapter therefore examines how China sought a greater voice in global economic governance and its incentives to reinforce the BRICS platform by examining the illustrative case of the frozen established institutions – the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank – and the intensifying institutionalization of the BRICS mechanism. It scrutinizes how China has encountered the ex ante distribution of power and the frozen power asymmetries and recognized the weak trajectory for future reform within both institutions. Next, it delineates that China and other BRICS countries have encountered similar discomfort and shared an understanding of the changing nature of authority in global governance; thus as a “team of the dissatisfied” the BRICS countries have been trying to prime their common interests and collective actions via the BRICS mechanism. The chapter argues that the BRICS plays a multifunctional role in serving China’s multi-pronged approach for better shaping global economic governance. It thus offers a more sophisticated understanding of China’s ongoing rise and BRICS evolution.

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