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The rise of China and the great power competition that it has triggered is part of a much more important story that has been largely obscured as the world struggles to come to grips with Beijing’s new influence and status.

The more significant development is the emergence of a tripolar global order, one in which China plays a role but is part of a much bigger process. The real story is “the rise of Asia” and the consequent shift in global power — or to be more precise, the failure of power to shift to the region as its wealth and potential grows.

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