China and The 21st Century
Published Date : April 17, 2010 ADawnJournal.com
The 19th century was the British Century, when the British Empire dominated the planet. The 20th century was the American Century, when the United States and its culture dominated the planet. At the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century, what country will dominate? What country will feel its reach extended and what country will have its culture reach every region of the planet?
Well, while many want to think that it will be the United States; most experts feel that while the United States will remain very important, the true dominator of the 21st century will be China.
In a poll done by The Washington Post and ABC News in February of 2010, 53 percent of respondents felt that the United States’ role in the 21st century will be smaller than it was in the 20th century. In addition, 43 percent feel that the country to dominate the 21st century will be China.
One reason for this is the incredibly rapid growth of the nation. In 1980, 53 percent of the Chinese population lived in poverty. In 2010, just 30 years later, only eight percent of the population is in poverty thanks to the rapidly increasing size of the Chinese middle class. The economy of China has also been growing, quite quickly, at a world-dominating 8.7 percent per year. This is well above what the United States economy is growing at. As well, the United States owes China more money than China owes the United States. The massive amount of consumerism in the United States has greatly helped China, where a vast amount of American products are actually made.
Factories are being built at a blistering pace in China, and the country is also investing heavily in green energy. All of this is making it appear that China is going to be the country to watch during the 21st century.
Of course, China is not exempt from problems. The country still has a lot of work to do in order to reach the same level as the United States in other regards. These include:
1. China needs to create more political freedoms for its citizens.
2. China needs to ensure that it has higher standards for the types of products it uses and the materials it uses in the products, like lead.
3. China needs to cut back on its coal power use to keep the country from becoming heavily polluted.
4. China needs to take a more diplomatic approach with other countries, especially concerning Taiwan and Tibet.
In the meantime, China is working hard to be a force to be reckoned with. While it may seem like China is just emerging as a giant in the 21st century, it is also important to remember that the country has actually been a force for 5,000 years. In fact, China has created many of the inventions the Western World uses, but they did so centuries before Europe. China is always a force to be reckoned with.