World Bank Chief Economist Justin Lin said on Saturday that China could work through the current financial crisis, the most serious since the Great Depression in the 1930s.
"My overall position is that certainly China will be affected, because export is a very important part of China's economic growth," Lin told reporters on the sidelines of the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
"However, China may be able to weather through this crisis in a much better shape than many other developing countries," said Lin, a leading Chinese economist who was named as the chief economist and senior vice president for Development Economics at the World Bank in February.
Lin said his confidence comes from three reasons. "First, China has such large foreign reserves; and secondly, China has capital controls, so China in a way can insulate itself by building a firewall against the contagion," he said.
"And third, China has a very strong fiscal position, because in the past four years, the (Chinese) government has run quite a substantial fiscal surplus," he added.
Lin, 56, and the first chief economist of World Bank from a developing country, said with the strong position, China can turn to stimulating the domestic economy by investment.
Earlier this week, Lin also told Xinhua in an exclusive interview that China should stimulate the domestic demand even without any external pressure, said Lin, noting it was "because these are the debts that China has accumulated during the years that followed the reform and opening-up policy."
As the financial crisis is worldwide, the US government has called for international cooperation to address the financial crisis. Lin noted that China's stable and fast economic development is itself one of the contributions to the world economy.
"The stable and rapid economic development in China not only elevates China's export, but also provides a bigger market for the rest of the world," he said.
(Xinhua News Agency October 12, 2008)