One of the events in Olympic that i like to watch is the long distance run. Usually the best runner, or rather the most enduring one, would initially stay at the background, keeping pace but not setting the pace.
The thing that i like to watch is how this person would slowly but surely overtake one by one as the final lap comes near. And then usually in the final lap, you can see him suddenly stretching himself and overtake all the competitors in front..
In the economic arena, we are now seeing this phenomenon. There is a country, the so called sleeping giant, which has overtaken Great Britain (or rather Britain now), France, and Germany. It has been running behind USA and Japan, but now, officially figures have shown that it has finally passed Japan too to become the number 2 economy in the world. The country that I refer to is China, in case you have no idea of who I am talking about ( very unlikely of course).
It has done well economically and this century will be the Century of China no doubt.
But with this ascendancy of economic prominence, I can’t help but notice a sense of arrogance among its people, especially the newly rich. It would do them well to learn to be a bit more humble, as it is really against the teachings of their Great Saint, Confucius, to exhibit such arrogance. There are also tales of unruly behaviour in public, pushing and jumping queues are common, just ask any visitors to China.. I once had a bad experience while awaiting to go up the Pearl Tower of Shanghai some time back. We were in a long queue going into the lifts, and then suddenly there was this groups of loud speaking men shoving and pushing when the queue started to move, these people actually went from behind us to in front of us. When I politely told one of them that they had jumped queue, since no one else seemed to be voicing out, they just gave me a hard stare, an unpleasant look which must have meant to say ” So what!”.
As i have mentioned in the case of Malaysia, to be a first world country is not just wealth alone, but the civil behaviours and thinkings of its people are very important. To be wealthy but with everyone acting like a goon would not make the country a good place to stay..
Perhaps, Chinese people must start to slow down a bit and ponder on these things..
I am posting part of an article from New York Times about China becoming the No.2 in the world now. Read the whole article here
China Passes Japan as Second-Largest Economy
On Monday August 16, 2010, 12:20 am EDT
SHANGHAI — After three decades of spectacular growth, China passed Japan in the second quarter to become the world’s second-largest economy behind the United States, according to government figures released early Monday.
The milestone, though anticipated for some time, is the most striking evidence yet that China’s ascendance is for real and that the rest of the world will have to reckon with a new economic superpower.
The recognition came early Monday, when Tokyo said that Japan’s economy was valued at about $1.28 trillion in the second quarter, slightly below China’s $1.33 trillion. Japan’s economy grew 0.4 percent in the quarter, Tokyo said, substantially less than forecast. That weakness suggests that China’s economy will race past Japan’s for the full year.
Experts say unseating Japan — and in recent years passing Germany, France and Great Britain — underscores China’s growing clout and bolsters forecasts that China will pass the United States as the world’s biggest economy as early as 2030. America’s gross domestic product was about $14 trillion in 2009.
“This has enormous significance,” said Nicholas R. Lardy, an economist at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. “It reconfirms what’s been happening for the better part of a decade: China has been eclipsing Japan economically. For everyone in China’s region, they’re now the biggest trading partner rather than the U.S. or Japan.”…………………………………