Opinion / OP Rana

Chronicle of China's unfolding ten years foretold

By OP Rana (China Daily) Updated: 2013-03-19 07:43

Chronicle of China's unfolding ten years foretold

The next 10 years could see the world economy go into a tizzy, wobble and then crash. The signs are there. The European Union debt crisis does not seem to end anytime soon. The United States still has no definite answer to its debt crisis or "fiscal cliff". Japan is too busy trying to clear the economic and political mess of its own making to find a foolproof way of reversing its downward economic trend. This, in brief, is the state of three of the world's four largest economies.

The next 10 years could also see the Middle East go up in flames despite the US-led West's efforts to spread democracy in the region, militant Islam become more militant, and Northeast Asia engaged in a bloody power game that could derail the established political and economic order.

In the next 10 years, rising temperatures could wreak greater havoc across the planet, scalding the land, drying up lakes and rivers, destroying crops and causing a food crisis. There could also be more hurricanes and typhoons, sandstorms and snowstorms, and of course floods.

Or, the world economy could truly recover and be back on a growth trajectory in the next 10 years. The world could be free of some of the present conflicts, with others on their way to being resolved. The world could also be less polluted and a much healthier place to live.

Whether we like it or not, China and its new leadership, headed by President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang, will play a not so minor role in what the world would look like in the next 10 years. The impact of their role on the world stage, however, will depend on how they deal with the challenges at home.

The two leaders have already given enough indications of the state of the country and the world they want to see by 2023, when they are scheduled to hand over the reins of the country to the next generation. Xi and Li have ushered in what many say is a "new style" of leadership, holding out a promise that things will for the better within China and enable it to play an influential role in world affairs.

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