This is a comprehensively updated account of where China stands today, covering the generational change in the leadership completed in March 2013, the Bo Xilai scandal and the changing course of the world's second largest economy and the last major state ruled by a Communist Party. Named as a book of the year by the Guardian, the Financial Times and Bloombery Business Week, it lays out the reality behind the spectacular statistics and explains why China has to change if it is to maintain its development and avoid major internal problems China's importance as an increasingly significant global force is a phenomenon of our times, but the world's most heavily populated nation has a history of catastrophe and tragedy, tyranny and repression, abject poverty, unfair business practice and corruption - and now faces environmental degradation and a demographic time bomb. In this compelling and lucid account based on years of research and first-hand experience, Jonathan Fenby links together the myriad features of today's China. He delivers a unique and coherent picture of its essence and evolution and contemplates its future - both alone and connected to the world around it.
'A bestselling examination of modern China by an experienced and fluent commentator' - Financial Times
Much has been written, from diverse perspectives, about the meteoric rise of China s economy over the past decade and how the 21st century belongs to China; that the world s most populous country will inexorably become the dominant global superpower while the United States will struggle to play catchup. More recently, with news of a dramatic slowdown in Chinese construction sharing headline space with revelations of political scandals and infighting, it has become fashionable to predict the imminent bursting of the China bubble. Fenby (Generalissimo), a historian and journalist with decades of experience in the Far East, offers a more nuanced view in his seventh book on China. He attempts to elucidate the problems facing the country that a plurality of Americans name as the globe s foremost economic power, along with the strategies that Beijing s political and business leaders are relying on to overcome them. Fenby falls prey to the mania for statistics and quantitative data that permeates much recent business literature, reeling out page upon page of figures presented with precious little context. However, he is a keen observer and entertaining tour guide, and though he refuses to draw any concrete or controversial conclusions, lay readers will benefit from browsing this richly detailed account of the country s industrial policy and economy. 27 b&w illus.