China Shakes the World

China Shakes the World : The Rise of a Hungry Nation

3.76 (638 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The new China, the nation that in 25 years has changed beyond all recognition is becoming an industrial powerhouse for the world. James Kynge shows not only the extraordinary rise of the Chinese economy, but what the future holds as China begins to influence the world. On the eve of the British industrial revolution some 230 years ago, China accounted for one third of the global economy. In 1979, after 30 years of Communism, its economy contributed only two per cent to global GDP. Now it is back up to five per cent, and rising. Although China is already a palpable force in the world, its re-emergence is only just starting to be felt. Kynge shows China's weaknesses - its environmental pollution, its crisis in social trust, its weak financial system and the faltering institutions of its governments - which are poised to have disruptive effects on the world. The fall-out from any failure in China's rush to modernity or simply from a temporary economic crash in the Chinese economy would be felt around the world.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 130 x 192 x 26mm | 199.58g
  • Orion Publishing Co
  • Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • London, United Kingdom
  • Open market ed
  • 075382115X
  • 9780753821152

About James Kynge

James Kynge has been a journalist in Asia for 19 years, covering many of the big events that have helped shape the region, including the Tiananmen Square massacre in Beijing. For seven years he was China Bureau Chief of the Financial Times in Beijing. He speaks Mandarin fluently and has won a plethora of journalism awards. He graduated MA (hons) in Chinese and Japanese from Edinburgh University, lives in Beijing and is married with three children.show more

Review Text

The sleeping tiger has awakened-and is ravenously hungry.Onetime Financial Times Beijing bureau chief Kynge opens his account of the new-new China in Germany, where the great steelmaking houses of the Ruhr Valley are coming down-and, in the instance of one Krupp factory, being crated off to China: "Altogether, 275,000 tons of equipment had been shipped, along with 44 tons of documents that explained the intricacies of the reassembly process." Why move a plant halfway around the world? Because it's cheaper than building a new one; that economizing will prove useful when steel prices tank and only the leanest companies survive; and China desperately seeks both raw materials and processing capabilities around the world. Thus the scarcity of copper, zinc and other metals, sold to China at premium prices; thus, revealingly, the spike in world oil prices, thanks to the entry of China into the market-and thus genocide in Sudan, where lies oil that is now controlled by the Chinese, who are fending off world intervention to keep the Sudanese leadership happy. Clearly, writes Kynge, China is a growing presence in the world economy. But contrary to the boasts of its leadership, he adds, China is destined to remain poorer than the West by virtue of sheer numbers: Even if the GDP grows to the size of the U.S.'s, "simple mathematics ordains that its people . . . will on average be only one-sixth as wealthy as Americans." Several overarching effects go unappreciated, Kynge suggests. For one thing, China has improved the standard of life for many Westerners thanks to the inexpensive items it provides, from clothing to machine parts; for another, China's destruction of its own environment in the quest for materials will become a planetary problem very soon.Should the U.S. worry about China? Most definitely-but, by Kynge's account, for different reasons from the ones being raised on Capitol Hill. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

638 ratings
3.76 out of 5 stars
5 21% (137)
4 44% (281)
3 26% (167)
2 7% (42)
1 2% (11)
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