Dr Laurent Estachy is professor in international finance and geo-economics at KEDGE Business School (Marseille and Shanghai campuses, MBA and Executive MBA programs mainly). His research focuses on the far-reaching interactions between geopolitics and global capital markets. Prior to this, he held senior positions in treasury & foreign exchange activities at BNP Paris trading room, and later on for the investment bank division of Rabobank International (Vice-president, Paris Branch).
Following a collapse of the Chinese export market in 2008, growth in China was accompanied by an unprecedented expansion in leverage. Total debt in China had risen rapidly and the economy has added more than $20 trillion of new debt in the last 7 years. The largest driver of this increase was borrowing by nonfinancial corporations, fueling massive overcapacity in the manufacturing sector and oversupply in the real estate market. Despite this unprecedented rise in debt and as the government tries to move away from the investment and export-oriented model to a consumption-dominated one, China’s growth rates have slowed from 12% in 2010 to 7% officially, if not around 4% as some analysts suggest. The presentation dealt with the far reaching global consequences of this accumulation of debts in China and analyzed the bursting of the Shanghai stock bubble, the massive capital outflows recently recorded and the devaluation of the CNY among other events.