Kenneth Courtis is an economist, entrepreneur and adviser to world leaders. Since leaving Canada as a graduate student he has spent most of his working career in Tokyo. But having watched economic progress in China, and done business there, he foresees sweeping implications for the world. China’s economy is already second in scope to only that of the United States, and it could be the largest by 2030. The country’s pace of innovation is ranked ahead of all other developing nations’, and only four notches behind that of Canada. Already China is too big to bully, too big to ignore, Courtis warns. He has urged the Trudeau government to re establish a dialogue of mutual respect, disregarding any objections from the United States. He has suggested that Canada apply to join other developed nations in the Asian International Infrastructure Bank, which aims to invest some four trillion dollars in infrastructure projects over the next 10 to 12 years. Friction is evident within China, with posters screaming for democracy. Concerns have been raised about Chinese investment in foreign technology firms. But Courtis says the Chinese government has become far less overbearing, far less oppressive. Regardless, he warns we must prepare for a Group of Two or G2 world, with China and the U.S. vying to be greatest. Hear what more Courtis proposes for Canada and Canadian businesses when he addresses the Empire Club of Canada on September 21.
KENNETH S. COURTIS is Chairman of Starfort Investment Holdings, which has interests in financial advisory, funds management, private equity, and commodities trading. Dr. Courtis is or has been a member of the boards and advisory councils of a number of leading international firms, including Capitaland, Emerson, Daimler, BTGPactual, Noble, McKinsey, ECT Partners, China National Off Shore Oil Corporation, and of private equity firms GEMS and NM Strategic.
He was formerly Managing Director of Goldman Sachs, and Vice Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asia, where he advised on large corporate transactions, government financing programs, privatizations, and investments. Previously, he was Managing Director of Deutsche Bank, and Investment Strategist and Chief Economist, Deutsche Bank Asia.
He is a councillor of the Asia Society of New York, a director of its Global Policy Institute, of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, a member of the advisory boards of the Schulich School of Business Management and of Glendon College, Toronto, of the Economic Strategy Institute, Washington, and a trustee of Singapore Management University.
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