International editions of When China Rules the World

Japanese First Edition

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An interesting interview on the Hong Kong protests

08/10/14 — Channel NewsAsia

Hong Kong Protests — Discussion on BBC Newsnight

01/10/14 — BBC Newsnight

On October 1st Evan Davis held a discussion on the Hong Kong student protests with Martin Jacques and Anson Chan.

China is Hong Kong’s future – not its enemy

30/09/14 – The Guardian

Chris McGrath/Getty Images

The upheaval sweeping Hong Kong is more complicated than on the surface it might appear. Protests have erupted over direct elections to be held in three years’ time; democracy activists claim that China’s plans will allow it to screen out the candidates it doesn’t want.

It should be remembered, however, that for 155 years until its handover to China in 1997, Hong Kong was a British colony, forcibly taken from China at the end of the first opium war. All its 28 subsequent governors were appointed by the British government. Although Hong Kong came, over time, to enjoy the rule of law and the right to protest, under the British it never enjoyed even a semblance of democracy. It was ruled from 6,000 miles away in London. The idea of any kind of democracy was first introduced by the Chinese government. In 1990 the latter adopted the Basic Law, which included the commitment that in 2017 the territory’s chief executive would be elected by universal suffrage; it also spelt out that the nomination of candidates would be a matter for a nominating committee.

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席卷香港的混乱根源比表面上看到的 更复杂。示威由三年后将举行的普选引 发,民主派激进人士宣称,中国的方案让 北京可以把它不想要的候选人排除在外。
不要忘记,香港是在第一次鸦片战争 后,被英国从中国手中强行掠夺。在回 归中国前,作为英国殖民地的155年里, 28名港督都是英国政府任命的。随后,香 港虽然享有法制和示威的权利,在英国统 治期间却连形式上的民主都没有。它被远 在6000英里外的伦敦统治。任何形式的民 主观念首先都是由中国政府引入的。1990 年,香港特别行政区基本法通过,包括承 诺2017年香港特区行政长官的选举将由普 选产生。该法也同时规定,候选人由提名 委员会提名。

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China’s Growing Global Influence

Diplomacy Magazine (Gaiko) — 30/09/14

Gaiko is the leading publication in Japan on foreign policy issues

In April this year the World Bank’s International Comparison Program projected that during the course of 2014 China’s GDP (measured by ppp) would exceed that of the United States. Although widely anticipated to happen in the next several years, hardly anyone expected it to be this year. But, it should be noted, the West has consistently underestimated the speed of China’s rise. As a result, it has been, and remains, consistently behind the curve of China’s rise, with the consequence that it constantly underestimates the extent to which the world has changed because of China’s transformation.

Of course, economic power does not translate immediately and directly into political power. On the contrary, if we look at the rise of previous hegemons, notably the UK in the nineteenth century and the US in the twentieth century, there has always been a significant time lag between their emergence as great economic powers and their subsequent arrival as major hegemonic powers enjoying broader political, cultural and military as well as economic influence. That said, however, economic power was the fundamental pre-condition for, and prelude to, their emergence as global hegemons. The same will be true of China.

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経済大国・中国の影響力は急速に拡大しつつある。東ア ジアは一段と中国中心になるが、広範な世界的影響力、 覇権国としての力の伸長は長くゆっくりしたプロセスに なろう。中国には「忍耐と慎重さ」が求められるが、世 界は中国の変容に伴う変化に目を背けてはならない。

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Harinder Veriah Trust Website Now Launched!


As the chair of the Harinder Veriah Trust, Martin Jacques is proud to announce the launch of the new Harinder Veriah Trust website. Established to commemorate Martin Jacques’s wife Harinder Veriah, the Trust helps over 60 school girls each year from Assunta Primary and secondary schools in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, to realise their potential, escape from poverty, and help transform their community. To find out more, or to make a donation, visit the trust at:

TED Talk: Understanding the Rise of China

Speaking at a TED Salon in London, Martin Jacques asks: How do we in the West make sense of China and its phenomenal rise? This hugely successful TED talk has over 1.7 million views.

Ökat Tryck När Kina Växlar Upp

This article was published following Martin Jacques’s keynote speech at the annual Chinese Economic Association conference in Gothenburg, Sweden on 1st September 2014

03/09/14 – Göteborgs-Posten

Kina kommer att bli alltmer attraktiv som partner, säger Martin Jacques, kinaexpert som tror att köpet av Volvo Cars kan stå som modell när Kina fortsätter växa.

Vi har bara sett början. Runt hörnet tar Kina över alltmer av världsekonomin och har blivit den dominerande aktören. Hela den ekonomiska spelplanen kommer att ritas om totalt under de kom- mande 15 åren.
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We should welcome China – it is the future

21/06/14 – The Sunday Telegraph

Alas, we remain far too ignorant about the country, too often resorting to cliché


The visit of the Chinese prime minister, Li Keqiang, to London last week is the latest illustration of a huge shift that is taking place in Sino-British relations. On taking office, the Coalition government talked about the importance of emerging markets such as China but did little. Then David Cameron met the Dalai Lama in 2012 and the Chinese put us in the deep freeze for 18 months. But, to its great credit, once normal relations were resumed, the Government lost no time in seeking to place the relationship on a different footing. In Beijing last December, Cameron spoke of Britain and China becoming “great partners”.

A month ago, China overtook the US to become the largest economy in the world by one measure. By 2030 it is projected that the Chinese economy will be twice as large as America’s and larger than the European Union and America combined, accounting for one third of global GDP. This is the world that is coming into being, that we must learn to adapt to and thrive in. It is a far cry from the comfort zone we are used to, a globe dominated by the West and Japan: in the Seventies, between them they were responsible for two thirds of global GDP; by 2030 it will be a mere one third.

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Stuart Hall – A True Original

Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, Volume 15, Issue 2 (2014)


In recognition of his enormous influence on the field of Cultural Studies, the journal Inter-Asia Cultural Studies publish a number of tributes to the late Stuart Hall in their latest issue, including an appreciation by Martin Jacques (see below). In addition, Routledge Cultural Studies have made available online a free collection of articles written and inspired by Stuart Hall.

Stuart Hall, who died on 10 February at the age of 82, was an academic for almost the whole of his working life. But in almost every respect he was a highly unconventional one. He did not come from Britain, where he was to spend all his adult life, but from Jamaica, which was still a British colony when Hall arrived in Oxford from Kingston, having been awarded a Rhodes scholarship. In 1997 when he finally retired as professor of sociology at the Open University, Hall, a black academic, remained highly unusual; when he took up his first university post in 1961, needless to say, he was almost unique.

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University of Melbourne – When China Rules the World

On 18th September 2012, Martin Jacques gave a talk at the University of Melbourne as part of a public lecture series organised by Asialink, questioning ‘Australia’s Role in the World’. This highly popular YouTube video of his lecture has over 150,000 views.

The World’s Largest Economy in 2014

According to the International Comparison Programme of the World Bank, later this year the Chinese economy will become larger than that of the United States measured by purchasing power parity. Already, by the end of 2011 it was 87% of the size of the US economy. The United States has been the world’s largest economy since 1872 when it overtook the UK. The Chinese economy had previously been expected to overtake the US economy in 2019, in other words five years later. Despite the bearish sentiments of many western commentators over the years, the Chinese economy has consistently outperformed the predictions about its rise.

China Overtakes the US as the World's Largest EconomySource: FT, IMF Statistics, World Bank ICP 2011 Estimates

Why Doesn’t the West Understand China?


Martin Jacques in conversation with John Gapper, Financial Times columnist, at the Names Not Numbers Conference on 23rd March at Aldeburgh, UK. Click here to read a an edited transcript of the interview.

Intelligence Squared Debate: One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Democracy is Not Always the Best Form of Government


On Tuesday 11th March, Martin Jacques argued for the motion that Democracy is Not Always the Best Form of Government in a debate televised by BBC World News. Speaking for the motion with him was Rosemary Hollis, Professor of Middle East Policy Studies and Director of the Olive Tree Scholarship Programme at City University; speaking against the motion were the American political scientist Ian Bremmer, and the Ukranian MP Andriy Shevchenko.

“Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others that have been tried” — So said Winston Churchill. And who would disagree?

But is the assumption that democracy always leads to a more liberal and tolerant society correct? Many would argue that it can lead to quite illiberal outcomes especially where there is profound ethnic division. Take for example Yugoslavia. Slobodan Milosevic – the democratically elected president – left a legacy of more than 200,000 dead in Bosnia and ethnically cleansed more than 800,000 Albanians from their homes in Kosovo. And what if democracy were installed in Syria? It’s not hard to imagine the outcome for the minority groups who for decades have enjoyed the protection of Assad’s regime.

Is democracy always the best outcome?

Martin Jacques speaks at the commencement of Luxembourg RMB Forum 2014

Martin Jacques and SAR Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg

On 25 February 2014, Martin Jacques gave the pre-dinner speech on China to an invited audience in the presence of HRH Crown Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg. It was organised by Luxembourg for Finance as a prelude to their Renminbi Forum 2014. Martin Jacques is photographed here with the Crown Prince. More photos from the event can be viewed here.

The Rise of China to Become the World’s Greatest Trading Nation

Over the last decade China has become the biggest trading partner of a multitude of countries around the world. All those coloured in red count as their biggest trading partner; for those coloured orange China is the second biggest trading partner. In 1990, China was the biggest trading partner of hardly any countries in the world; and even a decade ago it was still a phenomenon overwhelmingly confined to East Asia.


The Making of the Asian Century

This map graphically illustrates how Asia is the demographic centre of the world. And Danny Quah’s accompanying map below demonstrates how the epicentre of the global economy is relentlessly moving from its location in the western Atlantic in 1980 to its present location north of the Red Sea, and to the Indo-Chinese border by 2050.

Source: Danny Quah

BBC Radio 4: Point of View Talks

Martin Jacques presents a highly successful series of programmes on how best to understand the unique characteristics and apparent mysteries of contemporary China, its development and its possible future. In this new series, he sets out the building blocks for making sense of China today.

A Point Of View: Is China more democratic than the West?

19/10/12 – BBC News Magazine and Radio 4

A Point Of View: China and Multiculturalism

26/10/12 – BBC News Magazine and Radio 4

A Point Of View: What kind of superpower could China be?

19/10/12 – BBC News Magazine and Radio 4

A Point Of View: Making sense of China

12/10/12 – BBC News Magazine and Radio 4

Recent Media

Boao Forum session: China’s reform agenda


This is a special 45 minute CCTV television programme broadcast on April 8th of the debate earlier that day at the Boao Forum in Hainan on China’s Reform Agenda. It features Justin Lin, until recently chief economist of the World Bank, Fan Gang, president of China’s National Economic Research Institute, Charlene Barshefsky, former US Trade Representative, and Martin Jacques.

Upcoming Events

  • 23rd October 2014

    Talk at Asia House — "Sidelined by History: The Risk of Ignoring China's Rise"

    Copenhagen, Denmark

    3.00pm — 5.00pm: Asia House, Indiakaj 16, 2100 Copenhagen

  • 24th October 2014

    Guest lecture at the Copenhagen Business School Asia Research Centre — The Rise of China - A Paradigm Shift

    Copenhagen, Denmark

    1.30pm – 3.00pm: Room Ks48 — Copenhagen Business School, Kilevej 14, 2000 Frederiksberg

    For more information, click here

  • 21st November 2014

    Keynote Speech at the Leading Hotels of the World 2014 Annual Conference

    Vienna, Austria

    10.45am: Private Event

  • 26th November 2014

    Keynote address at The Asset 9th Asian Bond Markets Summit 2014 — China Today, Your World Tomorrow


    3.15pm: Private Event