【英语中国】分析:中国救不了欧洲

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2011-10-27 02:14

小艾摘要: The European Union’s top officials should have been sitting on a Chinese high-speed train on Tuesday morning, zipping between Beijing and Tianjin for an annual dialogue with their Chinese counterpart ...
The European Union’s top officials should have been sitting on a Chinese high-speed train on Tuesday morning, zipping between Beijing and Tianjin for an annual dialogue with their Chinese counterparts, writes Jamil Anderlini.

Instead the conference was postponed at the last minute and Herman Van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso were stuck in Brussels trying to hammer out a deal to save the eurozone.

The change of plans saved the three leaders from what would have been a rather uncomfortable summit, during which Chinese

officials would have tried to extract maximum political advantage out of their guests.

European politicians are not quite coming cap in hand to Beijing to ask for a bail-out, but they are clearly hoping that China and other developing countries such as Brazil will see it as being in their own interests to pitch in some cash to help out.

Suggestions include a plan for China and other governments to contribute money to the International Monetary Fund that is then used to support sovereign debt markets or recapitalise European banks, but Chinese officials coyly insist they have not been formally asked for anything yet.

They say they expect a formal request for assistance at the forthcoming G20 meeting in Cannes on November 3 and 4 and they may very well agree to help out – just as they did in the aftermath of the financial crisis in 2009, when they bought $50bn of special IMF bonds. That appears a trifling figure for a country with $3,200bn in foreign exchange reserves to throw around but don’t expect Beijing to cough up much more.

In public, the message is supportive and encouraging.

“China is confident that the EU has the ability and wisdom to overcome these straits. We have always provided what help we

can to the countries concerned via bilateral

and multilateral channels,” the government said on Monday.

But in private, Chinese officials say the suggestion that China will do much more to save Europe is preposterous.

“Ask a Chinese farmer if China should save Europe and he will ask who is going to save him,” one senior politician recently told the Financial Times. “The key issue at the moment is that the market doesn’t have sufficient confidence in [European] government policy and the ability of the government to carry out the right policies – so if your governments can’t convince the market then what can China do or say to convince them?”

China will keep making soothing noises about confidence and support for Europe and may even pitch in with some spare change from its foreign exchange reserves. But in the end China’s leaders believe it is up to Europe and its own people and governments to sort out their problems themselves.

周二早上,欧盟最高级官员们本应坐在北京和天津之间的中国高铁上,与中国同行举行年度对话。

然而,会议在最后一刻被推迟了;欧盟常任主席赫尔曼?范龙佩(Herman Van Rompuy)和欧盟委员会主席若泽?曼努埃尔?巴罗佐(José Manuel Barroso)被困在布鲁塞尔,试图撮合一个拯救欧元区的协议。

计划的改变,使3位领导人避开了一场本来会相当不舒服的峰会——中国官员会试图从这些来宾身上榨取最大限度的政治好处。

欧盟政界人士并没有到乞求中国政府出手纾困的程度,但他们显然希望,中国和其它发展中国家(比如巴西)将意识到,提供一些资金纾困是符合它们自身的利益的。

相关提议包括,由中国和其它国家政府向国际货币基金组织(IMF)贡献资金,然后用这些资金去支持各主权债务市场,或对欧洲各银行进行资本重组。但中国官员们婉转地坚称,他们尚未接到任何正式请求。

中国官员们表示,他们希望在即将召开的20国集团(G20)戛纳峰会(11月3日至4日)上接到正式的援助请求,而他们很可能会答应帮忙——正如他们在2009年金融危机的余波中购买了500亿美元的IMF特别债券一样。对于一个拥有3.2万亿美元外汇储备的国家来说,这点钱似乎只是小意思,但不要指望中国政府拿出比这多得多的资金。

在公开场合,中国政府传递出令人鼓舞的信息,表示愿意支持。

中国政府周一表示:“中国相信欧盟有能力、有智慧、能够战胜这些困难。我们一贯通过双边和多边渠道向相关国家提供我们力所能及的帮助。”

但私底下,中国官员们表示,要中国付出大得多的努力来拯救欧洲的提议是十分荒谬的。

“随便问一个中国的农民:中国应不应该救欧洲?他都会反问:那谁来救我啊?”一位中国高级官员最近向英国《金融时报》表示,“目前的关键问题是,市场对(欧洲各国)政府的政策和它们推行正确政策的能力缺乏信心——因此,如果连你们自己的政府都无法说服市场,那中国又能说什么或做什么来说服市场呢?”

中国将继续发表一些令人宽慰的套话,表示对欧洲有信心、会支持欧洲,甚至可能从它的外汇储备中拨出点零钱支持欧洲。但归根结底,中国领导人相信,欧洲的问题要靠它自己——靠它的人民和政府来解决。

译者/何黎

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