Book Break : Anthony H. Rowley, author of “Foundations of the Future – The Global Battle for Infrastructure”

Wednesday, November 18, 2020, 18:15 - 20:30

20200303BB Anthony Rowley smaller     20201118BB book cover foundation of the future

The book argues that the world is "in the midst of an infrastructure war" with China ranged in one side and a group of other leading powers - principally the United States and Japan plus Australia and India - on the other. Whoever prevails in this battle stands to gain economic and strategic advantage on a global scale, in terms of both "hard" and "soft" power. China's massive Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which is designed to spread transport, energy and communications networks across a large part of the globe is being countered by joint initiatives on the part of these other powers.

China has the upper hand in that, as a centralised "command" economy it is able to marshall huge amounts of financial and physical resources behind its infrastructure crusade whereas market economies that are more decentralised and dependent upon private enterprise and finance cannot easily match this "clout." While China has developed domestically some of the world's most modern and advanced infrastructure, as well as launching the BRI internationally, western economies have in many cases neglected their basic infrastructure in recent decades, damaging their efficiency and productivity as a result. A major catch-up effort is required, on the part of these economies, not least in marshalling savings into infrastructure building and maintenance.

The presentation will examine these issues and also the significant extra burden that climate change plus Covid 19 pandemic will impose upon infrastructure building and financing. It will also suggest ways in which flows of "sustainable investment can be directed toward infrastructure." Naoyuki Yoshino, Professor Emeritus, Keio University, said "This book is very easy to read and is highly recommended not only to those interested in economic development but also to those concerned about our future."

The author is a journalist and writer with long experience in Asia covering economic and financial issues including as Business Editor and International Finance Editor of the Far Eastern Economic Review and as Field Editor (Japan) for Oxford Analytica.

There will be a cocktail party – "Meet the Author" - starting at 6:15 pm, followed by a set dinner with one drink at 6:40 pm (Menu: TBD/ Dessert/ Coffee or Tea with ONE DRINK (one from orange juice/ Oolong Tea/white wine/ red wine). Drinks are also available on a cash basis in the room. Book Break charges are 3,100 yen/ 4,100 yen (members/ non-members) per person. The member price is applicable to members' guests.

To FCCJ members: Sign up now at the reception desk (03-3211-3161) or on the FCCJ website. To help us plan proper seating and food preparation, please reserve in advance, by noon of the day. Reservations cancelled less than 72 hours in advance will be charged in full.

To non-members: Sign up now at the reception desk by email ( Payment is in advance by Friday, November 13, 2020. No refund is available unless the event is cancelled by FCCJ.

Attendees with food restriction should inform the reception desk three days before the event.

We kindly ask for your cooperation with Covid-19 prevention measures to have your temperature taken and wear your own mask whenever possible. Thank you.

(The talk will be in English)