China may be the world's second largest economy but is it the world's most important economy because of its superior manufacturing capacity?





Gabi Roz

The US and China are relevant economies (trading partners) for two different kinds of countries.

The US is a service-based economy. Its greatest contribution to the world economy is services. Google, Apple, Microsoft are some extremely rich multinationals that mainly offer services. Intangible assets for the most part.

China is a industrial-based economy. Its greatest contribution to the world economy is manufacturing of all sorts, construction firms, agriculture, basic consumer technology, processed natural resources. Tangible assets for the most part.




The US economy is more relevant to countries in more need of services, which are for the most part developed countries with relatively well-functioning economies that can take advantage of the productivity boost offered by the American services. Countries that have already all the population needs mostly covered so don’t really need to import more food or industrial equipment.

The Chinese economy is more relevant to countries in more need of physical goods, which are for the most part develo and emerging countries. Countries that may not need as much iPhone 14 Pros and Amazon Web Services as they need actual food, farming machinery or physical infrastructure.


中国经济和那些对实物商品需求更大的国家关系更密切,这些国家大多是发展中国家和新兴国家。这些国家可能不需要那么多的iPhone 14 pro和亚马逊网络服务,但他们需要食物、农业机械或基础设施。

China also has a large service sector, and the US is also a large exporter of natural resources and manufactured goods, but they tend to specialize more in what was mentioned.

China having a higher GDP PPP (economy size measured in International dollars i.e. adjusted to purchasing power) and higher number of trade partners is a reflection of it being more important than the American economy for develo countries. America’s higher nominal GDP (economy size measured in US dollars) shows it is wealthier in the perspective of developed countries.


中国的GDP PPP(以国际美元衡量的经济规模,即调整后的购买力)更高,贸易伙伴更多,这说明中国对发展中国家而言更重要。美国名义GDP(以美元衡量的经济规模)更高,表明从发达国家的角度来看,美国更富裕。






Kanthaswamy Balasubramaniam

Many Economies can have their policy rock the Global Dynamics and cause Global Problems

Chinas Lockdowns caused a Massive Global Supply Chain Problem

The United States raises its rates and causes a Global Capital Outflow and Global Recession

OPEC decides to cut Production by 15% and suddenly Current Accounts are decimated everywhere

China is a vital cog in the smooth running of the world

Not because of its markets or its Industrial Manufacturing but because of its SUPPLY CHAIN HUB







There is no commercial product on earth that doesnt have at least a handful of Chinese manufactured components or supplies

From your Zeiss Lens to your Braun Products to your Volkswagen and BMWs to your Sony TV to your Dell Laptops to your Apple IPODS to your Apple IPADS to your Nike Shoes

Between 16% (Ipod) to 78% of the components will be made in China

And Made cost effectively due to Economies of Scale

The US and Europe talk of Supply Chain Resilience but frankly you simply cant shift your supply chains to any other country without either MASSIVE SUBSIDIES or without exporting all the Chinese Laborers and Chinese Manufacturing Units



16% (如Ipod)到78%的零部件都是中国制造的。



That will be Chinas core strength for the next 10 years at least

During this period China can boost its Domestic Economy, Boost its Chip Problem and slowly establish substitute markets globally by cutting the US Dollar from 60% of its Trade






Greg Freemyer

The US started in 2018 to make a hard push to insulate itself from the Chinese economy.

That continues and has accelerated.

Specifically the US has made a push to friend-shore. In February 2023, for the first time, the US imported more goods from Mexco than from China. And it was a 15% beat.






With NAFTA and USMCA (NAFTA2), North America has become an integrated economy, much like the EU.

Canada and Mexco are the #1 and #2 overall trade partners for the US. The US conducted 10% more trade with each individually in 2022 than it did China.

And US imports from Canada in February 2023 also surpassed China.






North America has less than half the population of China, but manufactures more in dollar terms.

North America is a major energy exporter. Fossil production is below OPEC, but not by as much as most believe.

Overall, I believe China’s economy is less important to the global economy than North America's.







John Andresen

No comment









Terry Newman


Will China’s economy become the world’s largest?

In terms of GDP, almost certainly. In terms of GDP per capita, not so sure. China has a long way to go before it gets anywhere near most developed countries and there are many barriers to long-term growth.



I am reminded of an anecdote about a condemned man who offered his absolute monarch a bargain. He offered to teach the king’s favourite horse to talk in one year, whereupon the king would spare his life. The king agreed. The condemned man’s friend asked him why he would enter into such a crazy bargain. The condemned man’s response was that a lot can happen in a year. “The king could die, the horse could die, I could die, or the horse could learn to talk”.

A lot can happen between now and the time that the Chinese economy is projected to reach a GDP per capita approaching that of the US.






Jed Roberts


Will China’s economy become the world’s largest?

Very, very likely.

However, by PPP GDP (GDP adjusted to the price level of each country) China actually exceeds the US by a hair’s width




Now, China is experiencing very fast economic growth, and there’s a good reason for that: China is still quite poor.  Almost an order of magnitude difference. This is incredibly obvious if you look at West China, not just the super rich Shanghai and Shezhen areas.


These values are indicative of the fact that a lot of China’s populace are still really unproductive. You’ve got lots of people tilling tiny little fields that produce very little crop (vs a US farmer in their combine harvester), you’ve got factory workers performing easily automated operations by hand, etc. The reason is either a lack of capital (to buy automated assembly equipment, modern tractors, etc), education/experience and finally entrepreneurship (establishing companies, implementing new techniques, etc).


Now all of those factors are develo, education is improving, there’s more capital than ever, etc. This is why China grows so fast.

Unfortunately, China is starting to hit the end of easy gains. GDP growth has slowed down a lot in the last few years, although it’s still a fast growing economy. So this brings us back to the question, will China eclipse the US?



I say yes. Over the next few decades China will continue to improve the productivity of its more Eastern regions, while the coastal cities will see factory workers upskilled into more productive positions. Finally a more educated generation will grow up, more clever and innovative.





Joe Sue


Is China really the world's 2nd largest economy? Why or why not?

Originally Answered: Is China really the worlds 2nd largest economy?

Chinese tell us they are not rich and still a develo country although China is the 2nd largest economy

Indian often tell us they will be the superpower in the future althoungh GDP of India is only 2 trillion now.

Hmmm, it is really a interesting phenomenon. I really wonder the reason caused the difference.






I never doubt China is still a develo country and I know it still has a 1.3 billion people. But India is also the same. Many comments ask me for the evidence of “India will be a superpower”. Just search on Quora or Youtube, evidence is everywhere?




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