[FOUNTAIN]‘China Cross’ and the effect on Korea“China Cross” is the latest buzzword in Japan, whose people are known for coining imaginative new terms and phrases. Just like two lines intersecting on a graph, China Cross refers to the reversal of the statuses of Japan and China. It reflects not only China’s growth, but also the sensitive reaction of Japan.
In each industry, the cross between China and Japan has occurred. Especially, the reversal is evident in market size. In 1992, the Chinese television and refrigerator markets were the first to grow bigger than their Japanese counterparts. Then China’s air conditioner market outgrew that of Japan in 1999, followed by mobile phones in 2001 and personal computers in 2003.
The next in line is the automobile market, in which the Japanese have taken pride. Last year, China’s domestic car sales reached 4.5 million. At this pace, the Chinese automobile market will outgrow the Japanese one next year. With the largest population in the word, China will naturally outgrow Japan in terms of market size as its income level rises.
But Japan is still confident in its quality, if not quantity. In technology-related fields, Japan feels that it has an absolute edge over China.
But its pride has been challenged with recent news in the supercomputer industry, the aggregate of science and technology.
American and German experts compared the capacity and performance of supercomputers made around the world, and the Chinese-made supercomputer made the top 10 list, in tenth place. The Dawning 4000A model has an 8.06-teraflop speed, processing over 8 trillion floating point operations per second. A more surprising fact is that China developed its first supercomputer less than a year ago. China’s largest computer maker, Dawning, produced a 4-teraflop model only late last year.
The high-end supercomputer industry has been monopolized by the United States and Japan. Now that China has barged into the exclusive competition, Japan seems to be concerned. The Japanese media have covered the Dawning 4000A as a major issue. It might be raising its guard against yet another China Cross.
When will the China Cross come to Korea? Can we say it is still distant? It might be passing by right now, if it has not already come and gone.
by Nahm Yoon-ho
The writer is a deputy city news editor of the JoongAng Ilbo.
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