Recent moves by Harley Davidson, Aprilia and Ducati to make and sell motorcycles in China are interesting. I’ve been reading the book “The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century” by Tom Friedman and in it, he is interviewing a Chinese official who says:
Chinese people first were the employees and working for the big foreign manufacturers, and after several years, after we have learned all the processes and steps, we can start our own firms. … First we will have our young people employed by the foreigners, and then we will start our own companies.
It’s not like they don’t spell it out.
Update: Bob Lutz has a few words about China on the Fastlane Blog. He just got back and is very upbeat about the size of the market and figuring they’ll sell a lot of cars. But he also has a few words about how fast China is coming up in the world:
When you look at the country, anybody who says the future of China is overblown or over-hyped just doesn’t get it. If anything, it’s under-hyped. We have no conception of what that place is going to be like in 10 years, and beyond. Shanghai and its surrounding province alone will have hundreds of millions of people with enough income to buy cars. And that’s just one part of China.
I just hope he and everyone else is going in with their eyes wide open.