SNS: Asia Letter March 2009: Asian Technology and the Economic Crisis: A View from Tokyo

SNS: Asia Letter March 2009: Asian Technology and the Economic Crisis: A View from Tokyo


Volume 12, Issue 11     
Week of March 30th, 2009

In This Issue

Feature: Asian Technology And The Economic Crisis: A View from Tokyo

  • Taking the “More” Out of Moore’s Law
  • Mercantilism on the Defensive
  • Economic Strategy and Competitiveness
  • About Scott Foster

Publisher’s Note: Those members who have been following our thinking about Asian economics over the last decade will be very much at home with the complex trends that Scott Foster has documented so well in this perfectly timed Asia Letter. If there are two large global economic questions looming, beyond the G-20’s “regulation vs. stimulation,” they are: What will come of the battle between mercantilist and capitalist economies; and: Will emerging nation economies suffer a deep plunge in GDP? The answers will affect all of us for the next few decades, particularly those in technology-related industries.

The mercantilists, as Scott points out, are in a particularly strange situation: having abused their own consumers, forced their savings, and sacrificed everything for (often-subsidized) exports, they now suddenly are thrown upon domestic markets, with exports in a dive, and without a new model to replace the old. Translation: parasites need a host.

Even China, with all its trade-surplus generated stimulus money, doesn’t have a new model to replace the old, other than what the U.S. is doing: spending more.

It is fascinating watching these systems in this moment of turmoil. The old Chinese and Japanese (and Korean) models were the opposite extreme: complete trade isolation, with domestic inputs and outputs only. Now we are perhaps nearing the end of the next cycle. These changes are huge, and critical in understanding global economic swings for the next five to ten years.  – mra.

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