China's opening up to the world created an economic miracle for the country and its people, and the miracle has benefited U.S. Great Lake state of Michigan, Tom Watkins, an advisor to Michigan-China Innovation Center said in an article on Monday.[Special coverage]
He made the remarks in an article published on China-U.S. Focus, an open-platform website for Chinese and American thought leaders to express their views on the myriad issues that face the two nations.
Year 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening-up.
According to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), in 2016, Michigan ranked No. 2 in the United States in terms of the number of investment projects from China; No. 3 in terms of the number of jobs created by Chinese investment; and No. 4 in terms of total Chinese capital investment received.
Between January 2010 and July 2017, Michigan received 1.1 billion U.S. dollars in new business investment from China, creating 5,475 jobs for Michigan residents, said the MEDC.
In the article, Watkins emphasized the deep ties between China and Michigan, saying Michigan Governor Rick Snyder understood that building bridges was a far smarter strategy than erecting walls.
In his article titled "As China opens up, Michigan benefits," Watkins, who has studied China for more than 30 years, wrote that what had transpired over China's 5,000-year history was nothing short of amazing, but the last 40 years had been truly remarkable and universally acknowledged as a stunning reversal of fortune for China.
"Seeing China then and now is as if a movie started in black and white and suddenly switched to Technicolor with surround sound, it is that remarkable and dramatic," he said.
"Michigan can be proud of this longstanding relationship and we look forward to years of friendship and collaboration that will benefit our citizens," Watkins wrote, adding Michigan can also learn from the Chinese who continue to make a massive investment in education and infrastructure.
"Cities, states, and nations that invest in their people will thrive," he added.