Thursday, June 23, 2005

FOI: China on the move

* Last year (July 2004) - TCL, a Chinese company that began in 1981 by making cassette tapes, suddenly became the world's largest television set maker, after its takeover of the television business of Thomson of France.

* Last month (May 2005 ) - Lenovo, China's largest computer maker, completed its $1.75 billion for IBM's personal computer business, thus creating the world's 3rd largest computer maker after Dell and HP

* Last week, (June 2005) - a consortium of investors led by Haier Group, one of China's largest companies, acquired MayTag Corporation, the American appliance maker, for about $1.3 billion - surpassing many American investors' bids.

* Today ( June 23rd 2005 ) - the Chinese state-controlled oil giant CNOOC ( China National Offshore Oil Corporation ), offered an unsolicited bid of $18.5 billion for the Californain Oil giant Unocal, whose 73% of natural gas reserves are located around Asia. This bid comes 2 months after Unocal agreed to be sold to the American Energy giant Chevron for $16.4 billion.
Whether Unocal agrees to China's bid or not, whether Chevron raises its bid to counter or not, this is going to provoke a major debate in Washington about the nation's trade policies with China. This is a symbol of China's growing economic power and corporate ambitions.

* Many more in the past, and many more to follow...

Are we in for a new world leader sooner than expected ?



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