When I was in my late teens and had one of my first jobs, one of my temporary colleagues was a Chinese guy from Hong Kong, or Ziang Kang, as he said that it was pronounced in his dialect. China, The Central Kingdom, was Zhoung Gou. Vincent Chui was the name of my colleague and we became pen pals for a while.
This comes to my mind when I read and hear of how China now has become our world’s second biggest economy. China has just elected their next President, 59 year old Xi Yingpin, and the six old men surrounding him belonging to the conservative party core. China is a one party, communist state, but not of the same kind as the former Soviet Union, and in recent years China’s economy has grown enormously.
Two nights ago I was watching Aktuellt, the News on Swedish channel two. They told us that China now have wealthy cities and a rich middle class, but the villages and countryside are drained of people. The countryside has become deserted. To change this the Chinese authorities now pay people to move back and become farmers again. They get allowances if they do. But it isn’t easy, and the journalist interviewed farmers Lee Fang and Zou Zoungying who told him that they need to modernize the agriculture for the farms to succeed. Many of the former farmers lack the modern technological know-how.
Even though the upper- and middle classes are growing in China, there are still problems with deep poverty and corruption, just as dissidents and people struggling for democracy are under surveillance and are opressed. The Chinese are on the move, and compete with economies in the USA, Japan, India, some countries in Africa and Europe.
Still…. Despite the competition where we have to consider our individual best, our families and friends, our companies and nations’ best, we never ever may forget how important it is for human kind to co-operate internationally in a positive way for the survival of our species. We all know why.
Anders Moberg, November 16th 2012