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Asian, African Nations Challenge ‘Obsolete’ World Order
World Economy

Asian, African Nations Challenge ‘Obsolete’ World Order

Leaders of Asian and African nations called on Wednesday for a new global order that is open to emerging economic powers and leaves the “obsolete ideas” of Bretton Woods institutions in the past.
Their calls came at the opening of a meeting of Asian and African nations in Jakarta to mark the 60th anniversary of a conference that made a developing-world stand against colonialism and led to the Cold War era’s non-aligned movement, Reuters reported.
The Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Japan had pledged, “with feelings of deep remorse over the past war”, to adhere to principles such as refraining from acts of aggression and settling international disputed by peaceful means.
Chinese President Xi Jinping had earlier told the conference that “a new type of international relations” was needed to encourage cooperation between Asian and African nations, and said the developed world had an obligation to support the rest with no political strings attached, the Xinhua news agency said.
 Obsolete Ideas
Indonesian President Joko Widodo, the conference host, said those who still insisted that global economic problems could only be solved through the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and Asian Development Bank were clinging to “obsolete ideas”.
“There needs to be change,” he said. “It’s imperative that we build a new international economic order that is open to new emerging economic powers.”
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe told the conference that Asian and African countries “should no longer be consigned to the role of exporters of primary goods and importers of finished goods”.
Indonesia invited heads of state and government from 109 Asian and African countries, but according to a conference official, 21 leaders turned up, which commentators have said shows the group is no longer relevant. The world order has changed dramatically since nearly 30 heads of state gathered in 1955 in the Indonesian town of Bandung to discuss security and economic development away from global powers embroiled in the Cold War.
Together they accounted for less than a quarter of global economic output at that time, but today they contribute to more than half of the world economy. Many of the Bandung countries, such as China and India, are now themselves at top tables like the Group of 20 and wield significant economic power.

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