Superpower Power In China

Words: 2004
Pages: 9

A superpower is a country that has a dominant position in international relations. Superpowers share several characteristics, of which the main two are a powerful economy and military dominance. With the fall of the British Empire after the Second World War and Berlin Wall in 1989, the world today has only one clear superpower, the United States.

Over the last 40 years, China’s economy has taken giant strides. After decades of self-imposed quasi-isolation, it became the second largest economy in the world after the US in 2011 and actually overtook the United States in 2014 if one calculates wealth on a purchasing power parity (PPP) basis.

China’s GDP has been growing at upwards of 10 per cent per year (according to World Bank data) for most
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Its economy is strong, but the standard of living for the majority of people is still below that of most middle-income countries. The same can be said for its military, with military spending which is only one-third that of the United States. Another area in which it has yet to match the US is in the extent of its cultural influence. American television shows, films and music are shown around the world. Combined with its economic might, and democratic heritage, this has encouraged people to learn English, whereas few people outside China learn Mandarin or other Chinese dialects. This leads me to the conclusion that although China is well on its way, it is not quite a superpower. At least not …show more content…
Self-sufficiency in food, energy, raw materials or technology may not be essential in an inter-connected world, but China needs to invest in and make alliances with other countries if it is to continue to grow economically. China’s large standing army consists of relatively untrained troops and it will be a while before it has the military hardware required to exert global influence and challenge the hegemony of NATO and the US. If I had more time, I would research the threat that China’s military poses to the US, however, China’s leaders do not make their military ambitions clear and it is difficult to find data on how powerful their army is, or the degree to which it would be combat