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Publisher's Summary

The Chinese economy appears destined for failure, the financial bubble forever in peril of popping, the real estate sector doomed to collapse, the factories fated for bankruptcy.

Banks drowning in bad loans. An urban landscape littered with ghost towns of empty property. Industrial zones stalked by zombie firms. Trade tariffs blocking the path to global markets. And yet, against the odds and against expectations, growth continues, wealth rises, international influence expands. The coming collapse of China is always coming, never arriving.

Thomas Orlik, a veteran of more than a decade in Beijing, turns the spotlight on China's fragile fundamentals and resources for resilience. Drawing on discussions with communist cadres, shadow bankers, and migrant workers, Orlik pieces together a unique perspective on China's past, present, and possible futures.

Mapping possible scenarios, Orlik games out what will happen if the bubble that never pops finally does. The magnitude of the shock to China and the world would be tremendous. For those in the West nervously watching China's rise as a geopolitical challenger, the alternative could be even less palatable.

©2020 Oxford University Press (P)2021 Tantor

What listeners say about China

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Good, but a lot of economics

Was very informative breaking down the problems faced by China, maybe a bit too technical.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 28-04-2021

Orlik should be ashamed of himself

Tom Orlik has provided a very valuable recount and analysis of his time covering China. Unfortunately he has left the audio book to a reader who does his best to mispronounce every Chinese name and term mentioned. This is a book about China, so that's a lot of butchering. Unforgivable.

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  • Philo
  • 24-04-2021

Illuminating, all through

There is a great mix of economics, finance, and pertinent history here. I feel for the first time I have a grasp of the current overall picture of what China faces (though lacking in Belt and Road particulars, and latest updates including post-COVID scene). I found the narration excellent, and had no trouble ignoring the occasional mispronunciations (particularly, of "Xi"). Both USA and China have plenty of potentially troubling plates spinning!

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  • SEAN TRAINOR
  • 02-04-2021

Well researched and argued

Strong analysis. A bit outdated, needs an update chapter covering the effects of Corna and the annexation of Hong Kong.

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  • Lonnie G. Hardy, Jr.
  • 29-03-2021

Incorrect pronunciations

The narrator didn’t bother to learn the correct pronunciation of Xi. Pronounced it “see”. Instead of the correct “shed”

Very distracting

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  • Dominic Tweed
  • 31-03-2021

Rubbish first page, otherwise excellent.

Besides the scaremongering about Chinese government debt, which is ridiculous since a government can't run out of the currency it prints, this is an excellent book about the Chinese banking system.

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