Here’s one test to see if the global balance of power is shifting

Ten years ago, when the Asian financial crisis was in full bloom, both Europe and Japan proposed some tweaks to global governance.  Japan floated the idea of an Asian Monetary Fund, and France suggested the creation of an Economic Security Council.  The United States effectively mooted both suggestions.  I bring this up because of the ...

Ten years ago, when the Asian financial crisis was in full bloom, both Europe and Japan proposed some tweaks to global governance.  Japan floated the idea of an Asian Monetary Fund, and France suggested the creation of an Economic Security Council.  The United States effectively mooted both suggestions.  I bring this up because of the following Financial Times story by Tony Barber:  Europe’s leading policymakers will convene in Paris next week to prepare the ground for a possible global summit on the financial crisis, Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s president, said on Monday. He said the Paris talks would bring together officials from France, Germany, Italy and the UK – the four European Union powers represented in the G8 group of industrialised nations – as well as Jean-Claude Trichet, the European Central Bank president, José Manuel Barroso, the European Commission president, and Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the eurozone’s finance ministers’ group. “We must not give in to the forces of destabilisation. We must support the banks. But there are structural problems. I confirm my call for a summit in coming weeks to establish the basis for a new international financial system,” Mr Sarkozy said. This is exactly the kind of thing that the U.S. would have shot down a decade ago.  If this goes anywhere, it will signal a decline in U.S. influence. 

Ten years ago, when the Asian financial crisis was in full bloom, both Europe and Japan proposed some tweaks to global governance.  Japan floated the idea of an Asian Monetary Fund, and France suggested the creation of an Economic Security Council.  The United States effectively mooted both suggestions.  I bring this up because of the following Financial Times story by Tony Barber

Europe’s leading policymakers will convene in Paris next week to prepare the ground for a possible global summit on the financial crisis, Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s president, said on Monday. He said the Paris talks would bring together officials from France, Germany, Italy and the UK – the four European Union powers represented in the G8 group of industrialised nations – as well as Jean-Claude Trichet, the European Central Bank president, José Manuel Barroso, the European Commission president, and Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the eurozone’s finance ministers’ group. “We must not give in to the forces of destabilisation. We must support the banks. But there are structural problems. I confirm my call for a summit in coming weeks to establish the basis for a new international financial system,” Mr Sarkozy said.

This is exactly the kind of thing that the U.S. would have shot down a decade ago.  If this goes anywhere, it will signal a decline in U.S. influence. 

Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at Tufts University’s Fletcher School. He blogged regularly for Foreign Policy from 2009 to 2014. Twitter: @dandrezner

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