Written by Worldwatch Institute

The year 2004 was a record breaker virtually across the board. The world economy expanded at a scorching 5% rate, pushing consumption and production of everything from grain and meats to steel and oil to new highs. World steel production jumped by a remarkable 9% in 2004, crossing the billion-ton threshold for the first time. The explanation for these sudden shifts is summed up in a single world: China. China's production has more than doubled in the last 4 years and now accounts for 27% of the world total--140% above the second-place producer, Japan. With its relatively modest endowment of natural resources, China is now using its massive foreign exchange earnings from manufacturing to draw in resources from around the globe. In terms of scale, this is as if all of Europe, Russia, North and South America, and Japan were to simultaneously undertake a century of economic development in a few short decades.

Christopher Flavins, Vital Signs 2005, p.13.

Designed by Free Joomla Templates