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Economic development and China and south east Asia

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Economic development in the past two hundred years has been primarily a story of progressive industrialisation spreading in waves first from Britain and Europe to North America and then to East Asia. This has gradually spread the benefits of better living standards and quality of life as evidenced by such indicators as life expectancy, which increased by two to four decades per person over that period. Also, the rate of economic development has accelerated as the process has spread from region to region. Whilst the UK spent almost 70 years to double its living standards during the period of its industrialization the United States achieved the same result in the 35-40 years after the Civil War. This suggested that the pace of the process in later developers, such as East Asian countries, will be faster as they learned how to avoid the worst mistakes from those developed countries. East Asia has been the greatest beneficiary of this process in the second half of the twentieth century and into the new millennium. During the twentieth century, expect for China and North Korea, all the East Asian Confucian countries (Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore) achieved industrial breakthrough. In the industrialised countries, the average person's livelihood has been raised from poverty to the level of the advanced nations. For example, Japan, recovering from the damage of the Second World War was able to double its living standards in about a quarter of a century and South Korea to 15 years. ...read more.


Chinese government has spent a large amount of money on education, which including primary schools, secondary schools and universities, for the whole country. Also, the budget for the state research lab is increasing rapidly. Since 1949, over 95% of children have the opportunity of studying in primary school. Around more than 60% of students can get their secondary certificates. Although the figure of university student is relatively lower than other East Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan China is making its great efforts to achieve a higher level. Due to the increasingly foreign culture from Europe, North America and other countries in the world, some traditional cultures have been taken place and the average level of people's life standard is rising. People live in big cities buy foods and goods from various supermarkets without going to old markets. Young people prefer going to fast-food shops such as McDonald's, KFC, Pizza Hut, etc. Healthy living style is playing an important role and become more and more popular in Chinese social community. Filling tripe could not satisfy people who want indeed taste and quality. On the other hand, China has 800 million people living in rural areas, 70 million of whom live below the poverty line. However, China have achieved an impressive growth and continuing this developing pace. Pollution is an inevitable problem for a developing country along with expanding economic development. ...read more.


But the policy of rapid development of China's inland areas will lay the basis for inner China completing the industrial breakthrough in the early decades of the next century. Korea and China still suffer the problems of division as a result of the Cold War. Both may take decades to resolve, but the close economic, social, and informational contacts between Taiwan and mainland China will, with increased confidence on both sides, create the basis for a deal. The deal: mainland China grants a very high level of autonomy to Taiwan and Taiwan acknowledges that both sides are part of one Chinese people which has some form of non-threatening rule over Taiwan. The North Korean political institution has farther to go. In the short run, the leaders face a difficult position for as much as the economy requires opening, they fear they and their system may not survive opening. Once opening takes place, changes are likely to come quickly. The combined East Asian GNP is likely to pass that of Europe or North America in the early decades of the new century. East Asians will increasingly take part in global organizations created by the West and still led by Westerners. Although not likely to foment revolutions, the East Asian countries are likely to play a larger role in leading and reforming global institutions as they rise within them. ...read more.

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