A bit of advice on doing business in China

January 14, 2013

An expatriate living in China sent me a copy of The Australian’s Goodwill Offers a Rich Yield by Greg Rudd.  The commentary was published in that newspaper back in May 2009.

However, what Greg Rudd says is just as important today as it was then regardless of the few negative voices that left comments.

I find it interesting that the negative comments from such as “lao de lao ren” and “RN of Canberra” may be from ignorant individuals that do not realize that the US Founding Fathers despised “democracies” and built a “republic” where only white male property owners (excluding Jews) could vote—about 10% of the 3.9 million people counted in the first U.S. Census of 1790, and 90% were farmers.  That number included almost 700,000 slaves in the land of the free. That means about 320,000 may have been eligible to vote.

“RN of Canberra” even compared China to Hitler’s Nazi Germany, which isn’t even close. There is no comparison. Today’s China is a much safer place to live than Nazi Germany was and there are no signs that China plans to go out and wage war against the rest of the world or set up gas chambers and start killing people as the Nazis did.

Both “lao de lao ren” and “RN of Canberra” express that China should become a democracy. Well, the CCP has about 80 million members and they do vote in addition to the 600 million rural Chinese that vote in elections for village political posts such as mayor. That’s more than 10% of the population.

In fact, the first time the US was officially called a democracy was by President Woodrow Wilson more than a century after the US was founded. Why, after the Civil War, veterans were known as the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR)—not the Grand Army of a Democracy.

Presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both said democracy was no better than mob rule, which explains why the Founding Fathers created the Electoral College to select presidents and why George W Bush lost the popular vote to Al Gore but became president anyway.

Greg Rudd offers some advice about China in his commentary.

He says, “My mother taught me when you walk into someone’s house you shouldn’t be rude. You may not like what you see sometimes, and advice and suggestions can be given in the right spirit and in the right atmosphere, but always remember it is not your house.

“When we are in China’s house we should show respect and when they are in our house they should show respect.”

Greg Rudd is managing director of GPR Asia, based in Beijing. GPR advises on investment and joint ventures.

GPR Asia works with Asian companies who wish to invest/joint venture/merge or acquire companies in Australia and/or with Australian companies that wish to invest/joint venture/ merge or acquire companies within the Asian region.

Discover more about Doing Business in China


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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