Choosing The Right China

I understand from reading "The new trade superpower" (International Business, Oct. 16) that alarm bells went off in Washington after China developed a strategy to enter new high-end industries and to pit Ford, General Motors, and other big carmakers against each other in a bidding war designed to transfer technology.

Help me understand this: Why should Washington get worried when Corporate America gives the Chinese a chance to appreciate the beauty of competition? Isn't this one of the principles of a market economy that the industrialized world has been trying to preach to China?

There is nothing wrong with the Administration's recognizing the trade deficit with China and making an effort to tackle it. But to avoid inconsistency in its China policy, Washington needs to have a clear answer to this question: Does it want a communist China with an underdeveloped, inefficient economy, or does it want a democratic China with a megaeconomy competing with the U.S. in a global market? Which does it prefer?

Weiwen Xiong

Department of Economics

Texas A&M University

College Station, Tex.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.