China or Japan: Which Will Lead Asia?

China or Japan: Which Will Lead Asia?

by Claude Meyer


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The twenty-first century will doubtless be that of Asia, which by 2030 will be home to three of the world's four mightiest economies, including India. This stimulating book aims to open a debate on the question of leadership in Asia for which China and Japan are competing. It assesses the two rivals' strengths and weaknesses as well as the major challenges which they will face in that battle for supremacy. On this basis, it proposes the most probable scenario for the next two decades in the light of the dialectical relationship between economics and strategic power. Without neglecting the strategic aspects that give advantage to China, priority is given to an economic approach, because that is the primary arena in which Asian integration is taking place and the one in which a resilient Japan still firmly maintains its leadership, based on productivity, competitiveness and technological edge.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199327614
Publisher: An Oxford University Press Publication
Publication date: 01/31/2012
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Claude Meyer is Senior Fellow at GEM-Sciences Po, and teaches international economics at Sciences Po (Paris). He has pursued a dual career as an academic and as an executive in a Japanese bank. He holds a PhD in Economics and degrees in Philosophy, Sociology and Japanese Studies. His research and publications deal mainly with Asian economies with an emphasis on the interaction between economic power and strategic issues.

Table of Contents

1. Genealogies of Two Economic Giants
China's awakening
From central planning to market socialism
Globalisation and how to make the most of it
Growth as a strategic aim of the Party-State
Japan's resilience
The Japanese "miracle"
High growth and external shocks (1955-1980)
Rivalling the United States (1980-1989)
Crisis and renewal
The 1990s: a lost decade?
A third round of modernisation?
Interlinked fates
Economic convergence
Five key steps in a troubled history
2. Mighty But Vulnerable
The levers of economic power
China's immense potential
The world's second-largest industrial power
Irresistible commercial expansion
An emerging financial power
Considerable potential for growth
Japan's strength and agility
An industrial and technological heavyweight
Commercial vigour and internationalisation
The world's largest creditor nation
Considerable challenges ahead
Threats to the pace of China's expansion
An unequal society
Warding off ecological disaster
China's financial burdens
Hungry for raw materials
The erosion of China's comparative advantages
China's political trade-off
A bleak outlook for Japanese growth
Japan's demographic challenge
Japan's public sector debt
Japan's dependence on imported energy and raw materials
The end of political paralysis in sight?
Giants shaken by the crisis
3. Japan, an Economic Leader Looking for Normalisation
Asia's economic leader
East Asia on the path to economic integration
A patchwork of institutions
Trade integration
Towards stability and financial autonomy
Japan's economic predominance
Japanese firms at the heart of the "integrated circuit"
Japanese financial power and Asian development
Soft power, Japanese-style
China and Japan: a relationship of dependence
Japan's aspiration to "normalisation"
A renewed focus on Asia
A partial conversion to regionalism
An ambitious vision of regional construction
Growing threats and regional security
Active pacifism within the UN framework
American protection but greater defensive capacities
A great civilian power, sincere but ambiguous
4. China, a Global Power in the Making
The race for economic supremacy in Asia
Upsets in the hierarchy of the great powers
The criterion of technological excellence
Japan's lead in technology
China's quest for technological excellence:
a long way to go and an uncertain outcome
The ambitions of a major regional and global player
An enterprising and "benign" regional player
Stable borders and territorial integrity
China's active role in regional security
A new and predominantly economic regionalism
The ambition of global power
Tensions between multilateralism and bilateral economic diplomacy
A rapidly modernising army
Conclusion: The Stand-off Between China and Japan

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