Fareed Zakaria writes,"China is a country whose scale dwarfs the United States —1.3 billion people, four times America's population. The very size and scale that seemed so alluring to the Americans is beginning to look ominous. And Americans are wondering whether the "China threat" is nightmarishly real. Excerpts with some edits:
- The most astonishing example of growth is surely Shanghai. Fifteen years ago, Pudong, in east Shanghai, was undeveloped countryside. Today it is Shanghai's financial district, eight times the size of London's new financial district, Canary Wharf, in fact only slightly smaller than the city of Chicago.
- Starbucks CEO Howard Shultz noted on CNBC that in three years the company would probably have more cafes in China than in the United States.
- China manufactures two thirds of the world's copiers, microwave ovens, DVD players and shoes. Last year Wal-Mart imported $18 billion worth of goods from China. Of Wal-Mart's 6,000 suppliers, 5,000—80 percent—are in china.
- China's rise is no longer a prediction. It is a fact. It is already the world's fastest-growing large economy, and the second largest holder of foreign-exchange reserves, mainly dollars. it is the powerful new force on the global scene.
- China's growth has obvious and amazing benefits for the world, and in particular for America. A Morgan Stanley report shows that cheap imports from China have saved American consumers more than $600 billion in the past decade.There have been two great shifts in global power over the past 400 years. The first was the rise of Europe, which around the 17th century became the richest, most enterprising and ambitious part of the world. The second was the rise of the United States, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when it became the single most powerful country in the world, the globe's decisive player in economics and politics. China's rise, along with that of India and the continuing weight of Japan, represents the third great shift in global power—the rise of Asia.
- China has grown around 9 percent a year for more than 25 years, the fastest growth in recorded history Truly amazing progress indeed.