The Era of the Dragon: How China Is Preparing to Be the World's Top Economy in 21st Century

The Era of the Dragon: How China Is Preparing to Be the World's Top Economy in 21st Century

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-7568-0.ch009
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The upcoming decades are expected to be marked by the rise and consolidation of the People's Republic of China, PRC, as the world's first economy, dethroning the U.S. and altering global economic geopolitics. The Dragon Age will mark the 21st century, with all the consequences that can come from it. This chapter analyzes the changes that are already underway and that prepare China to be the world's great economy. The departure point will be the examination of China's economic situation. Following, the authors move on to analyzing the Belt and Road Investment, the Chinese mega investment that aims to connect China to Europe inspired by the ancient Silk Road, making a geoeconomic analysis of the main world markets and how China has long prepared this economic rise and implicates a political and military ascension statement.
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People’S Republic Of China, Prc

The preliminary numbers of the Council of the People’s Republic of China for the pandemic year of 2020 points towards a gross domestic product (GDP) of China 72,278.6 billion yuan in the first three quarters. This corresponds to a growth of 0.7 percent at comparable prices, mostly based on the growth of 3.2 percent for the second quarter, and up to 4.9 percent for the third quarter. The projections of the International Monetary Fund for 2020 were 6% lower.

China remains on the back of the world's largest economies affected by the consequences of the pandemic. The country, where the first case of COVID-19 disclosed in 2019 seems unscathed to the increasingly severe and widespread economic crisis. To realize this rise of China, which aims to be the world's largest economy even before 2023, one must understand a little of its history and figures.

The first aspect to retain is the fact that according to the world Economic Forum (2019) “China home to almost a fifth of the world’s population”1, being the most populous country of the planet, with 1,38 billions of people (Figure 1), making the Chinese domestic market an important protection bubble of the Chinese economy (Ho et al., 2019). China’s GDP has consistently grown 10%, although it has slowed in the last 10 years, and now walks by 6.3% (Statistica, 2020). Figure 2 shows this evidence. The world average in 2020 is 3.3%. China’s poverty rate fell from 53% in 1981 to 8% in 2001 (Chen & Ravallion, 2008). It also has the largest number of unicorns, companies worth more than $1 billion, an estimated number of almost 10 million market entities, and new companies and industries already are 15,7% of GDP of China in 2019 (Statistica 2020). China is buying important companies all over the world, like Volvo, is making investments in a variety of others, like the technological Lenovo from IBM, purchasing mineral and hydrocarbons reserves, and seeks to be self-enough in value of chain, ranging from as “commoditized manufacturing and lower-skilled assembly to design, logistics, financial and business services, high-tech industries and life sciences” (Coleman et al., 2014).

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