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No country can expect to be No 1 forever | Updated: 2020-09-17 15:50
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"The international system, if you like, is the American system," said Jacques, the author of When China Rules the World. "The idea that America is No 1 is part of the American DNA."

However, no country can expect to be No 1 forever, Jacques said, adding that the US has been in denial about its decline and the rise of China and other developing countries. He said the US response has been to find a way of making China's rise more difficult and he described the current situation as a "new cold war".

But Jacques said this term shouldn't be confused with the one used to describe the former relationship between the US and the Soviet Union, as there are three fundamental differences between them.

The first is that during the Cold War, which ran from 1947 to 1991, the economic situation was entirely different from today, when China is widely integrated with the global economy.

The second is that the Soviet Union was never the economic equal of the US; however, in 2014, the Chinese economy overtook the US economy measured by purchasing power parity, according to the International Monetary Fund.

Jacques said the third issue is that China won't make the same mistake the Soviet Union did and become involved in an arms race with the US, which was a "disastrous approach".

He said China has shown "extraordinary restraint" during its rise and never become involved in wars, adding that it had played a positive role in different global organizations.

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