China, the world’s most populous country with the fastest-growing economy, has liberalized its markets, opened up to foreign trade and investment, and become a global economic powerhouse. As one of the world’s top exporters, the country is attracting record amounts of foreign investment, and, in turn, is investing billions of dollars abroad. Many have suggested that China is undergoing a second industrial revolution.
Because of the rapid pace of change, the country is facing great internal challenges concerning environmental degradation, natural resource depletion, massive migration from rural to urban areas, inadequate health care and increasing social inequality. While most of these problems have existed throughout the period of reform, how will the nation be able to manage these issues at anaccelerated pace of change? What impact does China’s ascendancy and the challenges it faces have on the United States?
Because of the volume of goods exported to the U.S., China’s economy has become dependent on continued access to our markets. This relationship, once relatively invisible to the average consumer, has become much more apparent with the recent health scares involving dog food, toothpaste, prescription medications, and children’s toys. What impact will these consumer scares have on China’s internal regulations and on the U.S. trade policies? What do our economic ties to China mean in a global market? Do the countries who are the major importers of Chinese goods share some responsibility for China’s lagging environmental, labor and health standards?
Does China’s authoritarian government represent a viable alternative path to modernity? Will the country’s global economic sprawl be a foil to the dominance of the U.S.’s brand of liberal democracy? Will China’s shift towards a capitalist market liberalize its political system?
Join us this week to share your thoughts and questions about the future of trade with China.
For more informaiton, please contact Kristin Millikan at 312.422.5580.