Since the beginning of the reforms in 1978, China’s rural economy has undergone considerable structural change. This article will analyse these changes as they affect China’s agriculture and the development of its non-agricultural activities. It will look at the history of these developments, the regional imbalances, and the consequences of both for the rural economy.
This article looks at China’s outer space programme and its implications in terms of its military and non-military applications. Being a huge country and a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, China’s launch of the first manned space flight in October 2003 constitutes a landmark event. High-level technological capability, such as in space exploration, add to a country’s power and bargaining capacity at international level. This article thus also considers China’s quest for position vis-à-vis other space-faring nations.
International relations in Asia, behind a façade of regional integration, remain governed by pragmatism and power politics. So the strategic situation in Asia is dominated by a dynamic of tension, mainly emanating from the Chinese mainspring, leading in turn to the strengthening of military capacity and posing some difficult choices for governments across the region and elsewhere. This lack of progress, despite the disruptions that followed the end of the Cold War, poses a real challenge to Europe which, on the contrary, is intent upon reshaping itself according to completely different principles.