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‘Economic war’ with Japan unwise

(Global Times)

08:29, September 28, 2012

In recent years, whenever China's relations with another country took a turn for the worse, calls for a boycott of that country's products would ring out. So it has been with the Diaoyu Islands dispute.

Any major disruption to bilateral trade would hurt both countries. Yet some scholars argue otherwise. They say Japan is more reliant on the Chinese economy than vice versa. Hence if China were to pull the "economic trigger," it would cripple the Japanese economy.

This is more guesswork than fact-based analysis. Let's not even consider what a sluggish Japanese economy will do to the global economy.

Japan is at the high end of the global industrial chain, while China is its low-end manufacturing base. Every year, China imports parts and components for the assembly of products that are then exported worldwide. These Japanese-made components include hi-tech and high-value-added products that aren't easily replaced. Just recall how the tsunami and nuclear accident in Japan last year set back the electronics and auto industries in China, Europe and China.

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