China’s economy has been a powerful engine for growth and development for decades. As a nation, China has surged ahead rapidly in terms of technology, military might, and international prominence. Its Belt and Road initiative has built infrastructure in dozens of nations around the globe, with the goal of enhancing the nation’s role in the world and eventually eclipsing America. Yet, China is experiencing troubles at home. Over the last couple of years, China’s economy has displayed many red flags and, at the time of this writing, is again in a period of deflation (falling prices)—a mark of economic instability (Sky News, November 10, 2023). If China goes into recession, it could take much of the world with it.
Between 2000 and 2021, China gave out $1.34 trillion in loans related to its Belt and Road initiative, with the money going mostly to poor nations with little likelihood of repayment (Deutsche Welle, November 7, 2023). And debt within China is a vast problem, as well, with many real estate developers burdened by debt and unable to find willing buyers for their properties. As Business Insider reported in 2021, about 20 percent of homes in China were vacant at that time—roughly enough empty properties to house every citizen in France! China’s economic boom of the last several decades was largely fueled by its exploding real estate market, but now that market is failing and poses a threat to the nation’s economic survival.
While China will likely play a major role in the future of global politics and world affairs, the nation may not come to dominate global affairs as some predicted it would. The Bible reveals there is a nation, other than China, that will play a significant role on the world scene as we approach the end of the age. To learn more, be sure to read or listen to our fascinating article “Is This China’s Century?”