Categorized | Domaining Tips, General Stuff

Why I’m Learning Chinese

Posted on 01 March 2019 by Andrei

Nǐ hǎo! I’ve always kinda-sorta wanted to learn Chinese but last month, my wife and I have signed up for an actual Chinese class… should be interesting!

But why?!?

In my case, it’s a no-brainer, as I know how many additional doors knowing Chinese can open. Hopefully, once my Chinese is decent enough, we’ll be spending a month or two in China for business+pleasure reasons.

Yes, I know people can just use English, fair enough.

But we’re young and in our case, I see learning Chinese as an investment in our future. Not necessarily one that will generate returns right away but a promising one nonetheless.

Let’s look at it this way: perform a Google search for the term “Angus Maddison database” and you’ll come across data about which percentage of the world’s GDP various countries represented over the past 2,000 years… I kid you not.

You’ll notice something interesting: when it comes to the majority of those 2k years, China + India accounted for more than 50% of the world’s GDP. And as far as the Chinese culture is concerned… let’s just say that even the first emperor they have recorded information about is described as someone who *took over* an empire that was in bad shape and turned things around… but that empire already existed!

So, on the one hand, there are benefits associated with my career and on the other hand, there are benefits associated with immersing yourself in a culture as impressive as that of China.

But the potential economic benefits transcend just my career, make no mistake. I for one find it hard to believe that China will not become the world’s #1 economic power during the lifetime of most people who are reading this. In terms of GDP, of course, because even once that happens, China will have its share of poverty issues, for example Western China vs. the powerful coastal industrial regions.

But still, it is an economic force that shouldn’t be ignored, even if the benefits related to your career aren’t as obvious as in my case.

Perhaps investment opportunities will eventually arise, perhaps you’ll be able to *attract* investors from China… who knows. The bottom line is this: there will inevitably be several ups and downs over in China (the short domain mania represents an eloquent example that pertains to domaining). Even the US didn’t get to where it is today very smoothly, let’s face it.

But after drawing the line, this much is certain: there are or will be life-altering opportunities in China for pretty much everyone who is reading this and those who are properly immersed in Chinese culture (among other things, by trying to learn the language) will have a huge edge IMO.

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