China’s a paper tiger

With China selecting its new leadership and a bizarre row with the Japanese over some islands in the East China Sea, it’s worth reflecting on the impact of China’s economic miracle.

In the West, the rise of China is usually portrayed as a threat, both economically and militarily. But a better analysis is surely that China’s new prosperity is an unadulterated good for all of us, as I argue on the ThinkScotland site this week.

Meanwhile its status as a geopolitical bogeyman is inaccurate. China has always been rather inward looking and defensive. This is partly because its size makes it inherently unstable. This in turn means that its economic potential is probably rather limited, as the BBC’s Stephanie Flanders points out here.

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