There are five major global challenges world leaders meeting for the World Economic Forum’s annual event at Davos this week need to address. These include strains occasioned by global power shifts, turbulence in major emerging economies, growing geopolitical and trade tensions between the great powers, Africa’s weak integration with new forms of global production, and a host of systemic risks that are related to environment, cyber security, and the potential for another global recession. The global leadership redistribution under way is marked by a tussle for pre-eminence between China and the US, with the interests of the two countries seemingly overriding the imperative to strengthen global cooperation and the multilateral order. It is a battle that goes beyond just differences over accounting for two-way trade flows, and signals an attempt by the US to contain China’s rise and global significance. Given the political and economic weight of these two countries, any unresolved tens...

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