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Does the future really belong to China?

If China does not abandon one-party rule, will it stumble under the stresses of state capitalism? Or will it show that there can be a successful authoritarian road to modernity?

By Will Hutton   January 2007

Dear Meghnad 29th November 2006

It is a commonplace to observe that the rise of China is transforming the world. Extrapolate from current growth rates and China will be the world’s largest economy by the middle of this century, if not before. If it remains communist, the impact on the world system will be enormous and very damaging. Britain and the US are, for all their faults, democracies that accept the rule of law. This is not true of China. If an unreformed China takes its place at the top table, the global order will be kinder to despotism;…

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