Share this on Twitter Share this on Facebook Share this on LinkedIn Share this on Sina Weibo Share this on Wechat Share this on LinkedIn People in a hot pot restaurant in Chengdu Credit: Kristoffer Trolle, Creative Commons Just as consumers began returning to restaurants for their first meals in months, Chinese leader Xi Jinping began a campaign of austerity, ordering all of China to reduce its “wasteful eating and drinking.” It was a surprising command given that most of the rest of the world’s governments are relying on vast stimulus packages to help them scramble from the deep economic hole left by Covid-19. From an economic perspective, the move makes almost no sense. It’s counter-productive to the effort to revive the still reeling consumer economy in China. Assuming China’s leaders know this, what might really be going on? It would make more sense if China is anticipating some event — like the possible reelection of U.S. President Donald Trump in November — that would further destabilize the global trading system in the months ahead, threatening China’s supply of imported food. Among the major economies of the world, China has managed to recover the fasteSubscribe or log in to read the rest.