Ruchir Sharma has rightly punctured dreams of a sustained reopening boom in China (Opinion, Might 21). Certainly, old China hands see its economy as a distant (but far bigger) echo of Japan’s at its 1990 peak, and for the exact same factors — weakening demographics and also considerably debt fuelling also considerably investment, in Japan’s case corporate investment, in China’s case infrastructure and residential home.
China is also experiencing the exact same US protectionist backlash as Japan did then. This time, even though, a sluggish Chinese economy could have much more critical worldwide ramifications, and not merely in terms of weakening demand for raw supplies such as iron ore and copper. Germany, which lengthy ago hitched its wagon to China’s star, and benefited hugely from exports of vehicles and machinery could now endure from China’s drive for self-sufficiency. Its automobile exports to China are falling, when Chinese brands are squeezing out German tends to make domestically and are poised to invade the EU market place.
And what are Chinese domestic investors undertaking — obtaining gold at a premium to globe rates. Not a sign of self-assurance in their personal economy.
London KT1, UK