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Bob McMillanAn Opinion

By Bob McMillan
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Take a Look at China

China has been all over the news. Part of the stories have related to exports and imports between the United States and China. Other news has covered the challenges faced by China’s economy. While there have been some fluctuations in China’s economy we have also faced downturns at home.


At the same time, China has passed Japan as the second largest economy in the world – just behind the GDP of the United States. And it is expected that China will pass the United States by 2021.

China, today, has a GDP of some $8.8 trillion. With a population of around 1.4 billion people, that boils down to $6,600 per capita. Now, here are our figures. The United States GDP is a little over $14.3 trillion. And with a population of 307 million, that means our per capita GDP is over $46 thousand – seven and one half times more than in China.

One other interesting statistic is the trade imbalance between the United States and China. The United States exports around $65 billion to China with China exporting over $312 billion to our country – or a difference of $256 billion. The trade imbalance is a contentious area where the political rhetoric will not fade away.

Now, take a look at the internal dimensions of China. First, there are more people in China who are fluent in English than in the United States. In addition, there are many more people in China who are capable of using English. How can that be?

Beyond the fact that English is the global economy’s language, the internet is another reason. Let me explain.

In order to read a newspaper in China, request an individual to know around 4,000 Chinese characters. In the entire Chinese language, they have 44,000 characters.

The English language has 26 letters and over one million words.

Now, go back to China. Could you put even 4,000 characters on the keyboard of a computer? Of course not, but the internet and computers are all over China. As a result, English is rapidly expanding all over the country.

Beyond the computer, there are other places where English is taking hold. In every major Chinese city all street signs are in English and Chinese. And when you go to a major department store or museum you will, again, find both English and Chinese.

There is one other interesting statistic. Each year some 8,000 babies are born in the United States to tourist mothers from China. Wealthy Chinese families take advantage of the 14th Amendment which, based on current interpretation, says that any child born in the United States becomes a U.S. citizen.

If you want to take a close look at China today, go to The site is updated on a regular basis. And to take a look at a description of the PowerPoint Presentation I give covering China, go to

Robert McMillan Website: