Kishore Mahbubani:Why are Asian countries proponents of free-market economics?
Kishore Mahbubani was appointed Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy on 16 August 2004 after having served 33 years in the Singapore Foreign Service (with postings in Cambodia, Malaysia, Washington DC and twice as Ambassador to the UN, during which he also served as President of the Security Council). He was the Permanent Secretary of the Foreign Ministry from 1993-1998.
He is the author of Can Asians Think? published in Singapore, Canada, US, Mexico, India and People’s Republic of China and of Beyond The Age of Innocence: Rebuilding Trust between America and the World. His new book entitled The New Asian Hemisphere: the Irresistible Shift of Gobal Power to the East was published in New York in February 2008. He was also listed as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy and Prospect magazines in September 2005.
Kishore Mahbubani: Well, because it works, because they have seen, I mean they have seen how Japan first took off and then Japan’s economic take-off was followed by the four economic tigers: Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore. Then it spread through southeast Asia, to Indonesia and Malaysia and Thailand. Then it went in to China, and China now it had the world’s fastest growing economy for almost 30 years, and that is remarkable, for the world's most populous country to have the fastest growing economy in the world is as unnatural as watching the fattest boy in class win the 100-meter race. It is an unnatural sight and that is what you have seen in china and now China’s take-off has not being replicated in India. So if you can imagine billions of people surging forward in this, what I call this march to modernity, its completely changing history of the world. And the really good news, by the way, that any Western audience should pay attention to is that this march modernity is now entering the Islamic world too, and if it enters the Islamic world and you have modern middle classes emerging in the Islamic world, it makes the world a safer and a more predictable place. Recorded on: 2/28/08
Because it works, Mahbubani says.
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