Assessing the Effectiveness of Transnational Public and Private Policy Initiatives
Leuven Global Governance series
Edited by Axel Marx, Jan Wouters, Glenn Rayp and Laura Beke
Chapter 9: Between the dragon’s gift and its claws: China in Africa and the (un)civil fostering of ILO’s Decent Work Agenda
In Europe, a country of 14 million people is a big country. China has a population 100 times as large. Let me share with you an interesting statistic. Last fall, about 150,000 tourists flocked to the Fragrant Hill in Beijing every day to see the red maple leaves, but altogether there are only 70,000 trees, so it’s one tree for two people. I’m afraid only in China can you find such things and it can be very difficult for foreigners to imagine this. Every year, China needs to create 25 million jobs, roughly five times the population of Denmark. As many as 6.8 million university graduates will enter the job market this year alone, and that’s about the population of Switzerland. There are 83 million disabled people in China, the same as the population of Germany. The most important task for China is to make sure that the 1.3 billion people can lead a good life, and you can imagine how challenging this task is and what enormous pressure this puts on the government. I believe nothing is more important than this. Everything else must serve this central task (Yucheng, 2012).
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