From a historical point of view, it would be very genuine to second the fact that China was among the most hit Asian countries by the nuclear bombs. It is after this incident that most modern political, social and economic trends were formed. This is to mention that China, before World War II, was a close Knight community made up of different kingdoms which shared a common leader. However, just like mentioned above, as World War II came to a close, China was among those countries which were hardly hit by the war after Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings.
After this war ended, China was more than ready to rebuild its destroyed economy which formed the political basis at that time. Towards mid-20th century, there emerged great tension which again threatened China’s economic growth and development as noted by Zhang, (p.412). This tension was later branded as the Cold War and it came with numerous implications to both China as a country, and Asia as a continent. It is estimated that countries more than 100 were economically affected by this war. Being in the midst of a war which has not particular date in terms of erupting, made many countries concentrate on the military strengths. China, similarly, was also among those countries that put great efforts in ensuring that its fighting power was strong enough to resist any form of military suppressions by other countries. It is with this respect that China began its agitated quest of upgrading its military equipment as well as taking its soldiers for specialized fighting skills and techniques in preparation of war that had particular date.
The Cold War
After World War II had been successfully ended with the formation of the United Nations, it had become eminently clear that there would be no more war or political conflicts across the globe. Nonetheless, the situation changed its due course when increased military activities by countries such as Germany and China. There was a presumably high tension since all countries followed suit in equipping their military. It is during this time when China began taking a solid stand of its political developments which were expected to boost its overall economy. It would be of essence to note that the following economic scenarios were all accrued during and after the Cold War. This analysis aims at showcasing the aftermath of Cold War in China and Asia as a whole.
China’s Economic Slowdown and Press Censorship Implications
There are many ways which could suggest a rising tension between two or more countries or regions. These mostly include imposed domestic economic sanctions which determine the trading environment between the involved states. Additionally, diplomatic relations between sovereign countries play a substantial role in determining the kind of relationship two or more states are involved in. If the said relationships are strenuous, then a basic conclusion would be drawn indicating an existence of international tension.
Factors Attributed to China’s Economic Slowdown
Global Manufacturing Slowdown
From an economic point of view, China has been experiencing an economic slowdown due to a fall in demand for its produce in the global market. This is to imply that China’s global markets such as the European Union nations, Japan and South Korea have reduced their demand for China’s products because of a corresponding economic slowdown in their respective domestic markets (Morrison, 15-18). According to the New Institutional Economics theory, it could be argued that these markets are seeking exports from other countries which are more economic viable and sustainable. However, this scenario could be perceived from another angle which would attribute the slowdown to a form of cold war between these nations.
Housing Sector Slowdown
This aspect of the economy in China has mostly been observed in its domestic market. From a descriptive point of view, the housing sector of the Chinese economy is characterized by industries producing housing equipment such as cement, steel, appliances and furniture. Since this sector accounts for 25% to 30% of China’s economy, its respective decline has had a massive blow on the entire slowdown. Morrison, 15-18 indicates that reviving the housing sector in China has been termed as a difficult process as investors are in fear of losing their injections especially in the real estate industry.
The Steel Industry
China happens to be the largest producer of steel across the globe and it supplies this product to more than 100 countries worldwide. When compared to Japan, the second largest producer of the same product, it has been estimated that China’s production is seven times larger than Japan’s production. Nonetheless, a decline in the demand of construction material (including steel) has resulted to a massive adverse implication in China’s economy which has been well explained using the theory of the New Institutional Economics theory. This has consequently reduced the economic strength of Chinese when it comes to this particular industry across the world.
Recent trends in China’s economy attributes its slowdown to massive debts which rose from 100% in 2008 to 250% of the GDP. During the incurrence of the debt, china took advantage of the financial international crisis to motivate its economy to global heights, at one point levelling that of the United States. However, the bone of contention has come in when the repayment period has arrived. Coupled with slowdown from other sectors of its economy, China’s ability to repay this debt has resulted to a massive decline in its economy as reflected in today’s financial performance across the globe.
China’s Press Censorship
Since censorship of the media began, there have been a lot of conclusions that have been drawn based on this activity. Despite China being a highly democratic country, initiating and consequently executing the censorship regulations has come with a lot of criticism some of which has ended in a lot protests across the streets of Beijing. In the following discussion, various reasons that have been given for the censorship regulation exercise has been discussed.
Censorship of Software and Websites
Recently, the government of China issued a regulation requiring that all personal computers entering the public domain should have a per-installed software. The main reason behind including this software in each and every personal computer is to filter any pornographic content that would pass through that computer. This enables the Chinese government to promote a morally healthy society with high virtues among its communities.
China is one state that has been attributed to inhuman activities by the authorities since a long time ago. The entirety of self-expression by the public on the state of governance by the authorities has been very limited as seen on a number of occasions. Journalism is that other area in which a number of limitations in terms of rules and regulations have been put in place to limit the information being put across to the public. Relevantly, from an internet perspective, the Chinese government has been on the forefront to ensuring that any inductive information, or one that seems to threaten the sovereignty of the state is curtailed and does not reach the market as expected.
Subsequently, China filters or censors all information from any source prior to releasing it to the public as mentioned above. From a more objective perspective, China has established an agency that would filter or censor all information pertaining to China. Since Google would be one source of information, this agency works to ensure that all the search results are conducive to the users in the sense that the information does not contravene the sovereignty of China as a state. Rational Choice Theory identifies that users are not able to get comprehensive results from all webpages due to this initiative by the Chinese government. What follows next is that a compromise on the principles of Google, Inc. is encountered and generally would threaten its business prowess in the Chinese market.
The Ongoing Asia’s Economic Tension
With respect to the analysis made above, then it would be very true to mention the fact that the initiatives that the China government has taken creates tension from a global perspective. As will be seen, for instance, the Chinese government take on the censorship regulation of media content has prevented internet users from accessing vital information about its government. Analyzing it from a Rational Choice Theory perspective, this would imply that China’s secrets can be executed discretely irrespective of their eventual impacts.
Various Implications of these Economic Trends
With respect to the curtailed information gateway in terms of what information China can access has a direct influence on Asia’s military tension. It could be argued that China could be discretely preparing its military for any war that could arise. Additionally, it could as well be argued that the main reason as to why the media is regulated on what content pertaining to China’s government activities revolves around the same reason. Nevertheless, it would be ignorant to blindly associate China’s economic trend with military tension across Asia without direct and actual facts.
From a practical point of view, Cordesman (57-68) asserts that South Korea has one of the main countries in Asia which have been on the forefront of creating military tension. This is attributed to the fact that this country conducts nuclear weapon activities in the open. Logically, this would affect any government’s military capability and in turn result to tension which could erupt to war at any given point in time. Given the description of the Rational Choice Theory, China’s involvement in this aspect has been perceived by its regulations, rules and laws enacted by its government when it comes to what information is released to the press for publication.
Additionally, it could also be argued that the recent economic slowdown in China has resulted from extensive military investments. Hence, this government spend a lot of resources in equipping its defense force. In as much as it sounds vague, null and void in terms of evidence, dismissing it could have negative impacts in case a war comes up. To be more specific, nuclear activities in any nation coupled with discrete government activities kept secret would create tension in any region across the globe. Additionally, the same could be reflected in the rising and slowing down of the economy when addressed from different point of views.
China happens to be a country which has promoted its economy to growth heights experienced by European nations such as Germany and Britain. It is an example of an economy that has greatly improved in a very short span of time due to its ability to continue adopting strategies of the Neoclassical Theory Concepts. The Chinese government’s commitment towards the development of its economy has really boosted the lives of its citizens to countries such as the US and UK, according to. From an objective point of view, what the Chinese government did before was what developing nations are currently trying to implement. Such initiatives include providing affordable and sustainable loans to prospective businessmen.
According to the Theories of Economic Developments, the growth of micro-businesses has summed up to an economy that has in turn provided an appropriate platform for the development of other enterprises and industries. In addition to the financial support that would facilitate the growth of an economy, the Chinese has also been in a position to come up with laws and regulations which work in favor of uplifting its economy with respect to Dunne (86-87). Lastly, the academic curriculum of the Chinese education has been directed towards producing individuals that would perfectly work towards developing the economy. Unlike the Chinese, developing nations structure their curriculums in a way that does not suit its economy.
Nonetheless, all these efforts have been shuttered by the recent economic slowdown. As had been mentioned earlier in this analysis, the slowdown has been attributed to a number of factors. Most fundamentally, Burchill (56-58) indicates that the economic response China has been receiving from its global markets of Japan and South Korea has been very suggestive.
Irrespective of the corresponding slowdown in China’s global markets, it would also be true that there could be an economic initiative. This is in the sense that, if negative economic sanctions are imposed in Japan and South Korea pertaining to imports from China, it could have a direct implication that the former countries are not in full trust with China’s. Essentially, Dunne (86-87) asserts that this would culminate into economic tensions among these countries.
Since China became a victim of Cold War, there was a lot of changes in its social set-up. For instance, China’s population grew rapidly making it the second most populous country after India. This would go on to show that economic instability resulted into strained social phenomena as stated by Chu, et al (p. 558-561). Researchers have shown the lack of jobs (better known as unemployment) motivates breeding of children and this is never a good indicator to public resource distribution. Aside from unemployment, there are a number of interesting social phenomena that has described the Chinese from different angles.
To begin with, the Chinese population happens to be filled with more men than there are women. Interestingly, finding a lady companion in China happens to be a tedious and astonishing process to an extent that these kind of scenarios are taken live to the public. For instance, Fang, et al (p.511-513) note that men publicly declare their interests in a lady in a public arranged function which sees the man campaign for himself in a crowd of passers-by. This has become so normal in Chinese towns such as Shanghai where ordinary youths are finding it difficult to get ladies to marry. It would be very interesting to acknowledge that the Chinese population has contributed massively to its recent economic growth especially after the ever-intriguing cold war which came with a lot of tension.
It would also be of essence to recognize the influence of American culture on the Chinese people. Apparently, it is during the cold war that the Americans way of life become known to the world in a vividly manner. This is to state that individuals who would go to America for business or academic purposes would interact with the natives and borrow an idea or two from these people on social life perspectives such as dressing and language. This situation was very instrumental in the Chinese cultural distortion which saw many Chinese adopt queer behavior with reference to their original culture. Consequently, the change in various cultural beliefs would latter see Chinese people talking in slang and eating foreign foods to keep up with the Americans. A good example of cultural interference would include the establishment of McDonald’s food joints present in Chinese towns of Shanghai and Beijing as noted by Austinet al (p. 222).
From a conclusive point of view, it would be very true to say that the recent economic slowdown in China has a direct impact on the various tensions experienced across Asia. To be more specific, the Theory of Economic Development suggests that this slowdown has been directly attributed towards economic tension especially between countries of Middle East Asia according to Dent (15-17). Additionally, the same slowdown has culminated to military tension especially between China and South Korea. This is because these two countries have been competing to have recognition on military prowess especially when it comes to nuclear weaponry production as suggested by Joeck (56-58).
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Dunne, Tim, Milja Kurki, and Steve Smith. International relations theories. Oxford University Press, 2013 p80-90.
Burchill, Scott, et al. Theories of international relations. Palgrave Macmillan, 2013, p50-60.
Joeck, Neil. Maintaining Nuclear Stability in South Asia. No. 312. Routledge, 2013, p55-60.
Cordesman, Anthony H., and Aaron Lin. The changing military balance in the Koreas and Northeast Asia. Rowman & Littlefield, 2015, p55-66.
Dent, Christopher M. The European Union and East Asia: An Economic Relationship. Routledge, 2013, p10-20.
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Fang, Jiaming, Victor Prybutok, and Chao Wen. “Shirking behavior and socially desirable responding in online surveys: A cross-cultural study comparing Chinese and American samples.” Computers in Human Behavior 54 (2016): 310-317.
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