Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Are the Chinese Smarter than the Europeans? (follow-up)

I take the liberty of publishing below the comment which the reader Lennard made to my recent article "Are the Chinese smarter than the Europeans?".

"Are the Chinese smarter than the Europeans?

They may well be in the long run, for sure they are a lot smarter than the Greeks. The crafty Greeks are considered to be master wheelers and dealers, but they can't hold a candle to the Chinese. I have during the last week's visit of the Chinese trade delegation watched and admired the virtuosi way the Chinese played the Greeks.

They have praised the ancient Hellene culture and by extension modern Greece. They have compared the ancient Hellene culture with the Chinese and not found it wanting. They have expressed that Greece is (at least) as important to the world as China. They have proven their friendship and confidence in the Greek economy by signing investment deals for USD 4.6 BIO (3.5 being loans to Greek controlled shipping companies located in other countries, for ships build in China. The remaining being Letters Of Intent or confirmations of previous deals like the Hellenikon). They have hinted that Greece will soon regain it's well-deserved important role in world politics and economics. They have hinted that Greece will become the all-important middle man for all future large transactions between China and Europe. They have pledged that they will invest in Greek government bonds, a promise they have repeated once a year since they said it to G. Papandreou in 2010, an easy promise considering the anonymity of ownership.

And did the suspicious Greeks swallow that? Hook, line and sinker, flattery will get you everywhere. Watch out Frau Merkel, we have powerful friends"

1 comment:

  1. "The crafty Greeks are considered to be master wheelers and dealers,"

    Surely, George Panadreou must be an example for that. His troika deal will be lectured in universities as how a borrower deals with the creditor.

    The chinese "deals" are better than the german "no deals". It is better to have a confirmation of an intention for Hellenikon, where the chinese signed to invest 200 million, than having the non confirmation of the "Helios project", which at the end brought 0 million investment.

    For someone in the desert, a glass of water is precious. Even if 3.5 out of 4.6 goes to shipping companies loans, it's better than 0 bln. Moreover, even though the greek shipping companies pay practically no taxes, they do make up for a percentage of the GDP and a shipping company with work and ships is better than one with no work and no ships.

    Moreover, the small greek exports in oil, wine and marble, may have an indirect benefit of making greek products known to chinese market.

    Last, the Chinese, seem the only ones interested in buying something of the "state portfolio", which is on TAIPED's list and is a troika demand. They expressed interest beyong Pireaus harbor, for 55% of Athens airport, Kastelli airport in Crete and maybe a deal for the railways.

    Who else showed interest? The European leaders, visit Athens, go the Acropolis museum, try the usual flatter about ancient Greece that everyone has heard 100 times since its birth, pat Samaras on his back and then tell him "now we send you the troika, be good with them, goodbye". Oh, in the first year of crisis some were still hoping to sell weapons to Greece as "financial boosting" (of their weapons industries).