China's Economy Surpasses Japan's -- What It Means

“As news that China has officially overtaken Japan as the world’s second-largest economy makes headlines, it’s worth noting that big does not necessarily mean strong, as seen in the rare note of caution from the website of the People’s Daily newspaper in Beijing: ‘China Surpassing Japan to Become World's Second Biggest Economy -- But Not the Second Strongest’,” says Asia Society Associate Fellow Sheridan Prasso.

“China is grappling with high inflation, severe income inequalities, a protected and inflated currency, and urban property bubbles. And its per capita income still lags far behind Japan’s and the United States’ -- which remain the highest-value, highest-producing, most-valued markets in the world. There’s a long way to go before China’s size will be equaled by its strength.”

Sheri is in New York. To arrange an interview, contact the Asia Society communications department at 212-327-9271 or