A High Price for Chinese Porcelain

July 30, 2010

Jingdezhen in Jiangxi province is a well-known Chinese porcelain city and has been an important production center in China since the early Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD). Chinese porcelain originated in the Shang Dynasty (16th century BC). Source: China Paper Online

Frances Miller writes about collecting antique Canton china at Suite 101.com. He says, “Since the 18th century, blue and white porcelain china originating from the port of Canton has been filling cabinets in America… and was a staple on the dining tables of such prominent Americans as George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.”  

“The demand for Chinese products—tea, porcelain, silk, and nankeen (a coarse, strong cotton cloth)—continued after the Revolution. Having seen the British make great profits from the trade when the colonies were prevented from direct trade with China, Americans were eager to secure these profits for themselves.” Source: Early American Trade With China

This hunger for Chinese products, while the Chinese found little in the West to buy, led to the Opium Wars, which Britain and France started and won to force China to even the trade imbalance. Then China sold the West silk, porcelain and tea while the West sold China opium.

Today, we still hear angry voices complain about the unfair trade imbalance between China and the US. Can anyone blame China for maintaining a powerful military?

See The Accidental Discovery of Gunpowder

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. 

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Exports and Imports Equals Jobs

May 28, 2010

When rumors say that China is going to sell Euros or cash in on US Treasurys, stock markets tend to panic. Then China denies the rumors as they did recently. “Europe has been and will be one of the major markets for investing China’s exchange reserves,” China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange says. Source: 24/7 Wall St

It would not serve China’s interests to hurt Europe or America’s economies since China exports more than 200 billion Euros worth of mainly industrial good to Europe, which means jobs in China. Europe also exports more than 80 billion Euros in goods to China, which translated into European jobs.

Overall, China imported $922 billion  dollars worth of products from the rest of the world last year while exports declined to an estimated 1.19 trillion.

Although exports to the U.S. fell in 2009 by 12.2% to 296.4 billion, China’s imports only went down to 69.6 from 69.7 billion dollars from the prior year so America improved its trade deficit with the PRC by 15.4% in 2009. This means jobs were lost in China but not as many jobs were lost in America from what America sells and exports to China.  Source: China Trade Statistics 2009

See Jobless in America and Angry at China

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the author of the award winning novels My Splendid Concubine and Our Hart. He also Blogs at The Soulful Veteran and Crazy Normal.

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