A Steady Slowdown

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Going into the third year at the helm of the world’s second biggest economy, Chinese leader Xi Jinping faces perhaps the most daunting task of any world leader, aggravated by the recent downturn in the economy.

Markets and many foreign observers have been extraordinarily slow in picking up the fact that the world’s second biggest economy is slowing down. That has been the policy of the Bejing leadership for at least a year. The drop in growth so far does not betoken a crisis. But it does raise the basic question of whether the leadership of the second largest economy on earth can manage the need for change on a huge scale, which could jeopardise some of its basic political criteria.

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