U.S.-CHINESE TRADE AND INVESTMENT PATTERNS
MOHAMED T. VAZIRI
The normalization process of Sino-American relations captured the imagination of the American people and the world in the early part of the 1970s. The subsequent unexpected dramatic transformation in U.S. relations with the People's Republic of China (PRC), from enmity to cooperation, had a powerful impact on worldwide perceptions of international relations. Despite the powerful initial impact on attitudes and perceptions brought about by these changes, however, we are now beginning to acquire some perspective on the real significance of America's new relationship with the PRC.
Despite the immediate post-normalization perception of the PRC as a potential market of hundreds of millions of customers, many U.S. businesspeople, put off by the long delay and policy instabilities that are now seen to be a part of conducting commercial relations with the PRC, might conclude that the China trade is too costly and uncertain to be worth the effort. The enthusiasm of the U.S. public for contact with the PRC may lead to unrealistic expectations and possible disappointments.
The history of the U.S. view of China has been characterized by sharp swings of mood, and today's high hopes for U.S.-PRC relations in the areas of trade, cultural contacts, or even cooperation in foreign policy and national security activities may not be met. At the same time, the Chinese people have a tendency to look to their friends for generous support and assistance, and to view a more developed and powerful country as a model____________________