This is a time when business, trade and wealth prosper.
In the early spring of 2007, the Chinese stock market plunged, leading to a global panic in the world stock market. This has shown that the Chinese economy has already been integrated into the process of globalization. Later on the National People's Congress (NPC) and the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) were convened and issues related to people’s well-being and the enlarging gap between the rich and the poor became the focus of discussion; in the government work report presented by Premier Wen Jiabao, great attention has been given to environmental protection, issues concerning with agriculture, countryside and farmers, education, health care and other public services. Therefore, after more than 20 years of development, the Chinese people have accumulated a considerable amount of money, yet they are also confronted with issues such as the distribution of wealth and the position of social values.
For the past 20 years or so, with the “white cat or black cat” theory from the Mainland China or the philosophy of struggling to win or taking the second place from the Four Asian Tigers, the Chinese people have made their fortune through exports and processing trade under the globalized framework in which Britain and America takes the lead. In this process, what the Chinese people are after is also of western style or even the American consumption and economical development model.
At the same time, the concept of a well-off society or common wealth which used to be the prerequisite of the economic boom has been overlooked, the discrepancies between rural and urban areas enlarged, the gap between the rich and the poor widened and the environment worsened. Under these circumstances, how should we see the meaning of wealth, the value of business and trade as well as money in the beginning of the 21st century? How should we see the history and the culture of the Chinese people’s fortune-making through setting up businesses?
As is known to all, in the past, the huge domestic market demand in ancient China under the status divisions of scholars, farmers, artisans and merchants provided enough space for the businessmen to display their talents. They developed complicated business skills and mature financial tools and some of them, like businessmen in Shanxi and Anhui provinces, also participated in the creation and promotion of cultural activities. Although they did not initiate an industrial revolution like what the westerners did so as to better integrate with the western capitalist market, they subconsciously formed, under the divisions of scholars, farmers, artisans and merchants, a kind of dynamic balance with agriculture, countryside and farmers as well as the environment in both the economic and cultural spheres.
However, as a matter of fact, what has led to the current economic development among Chinese societies is something that has rarely been under discussion. For the last 1000 years or so, businessmen from Fujian and Guangzhou have been integrated into the global market. With great creativity, they have played the role of middleman in dealing with businessmen from various cultural backgrounds, thus becoming a major player in the global trade. They are adventurous and open-minded and their businesses get integrated into the Western colonization and the industrial revolution, and then spread from the southeastern coastal areas of China to Japan and areas beyond the South China Sea. They devoutly believe in the Goddess of the Sea: wherever there is a Matsu temple, it is either a trading port, capital of the colony, a concession area in history or a current Export Processing Zone and a Special Economic Zone.
Such kind of a historical reality have formed the foundation of the current wealth of the Chinese people, but at the same time did they also bring some problems related to natural resources, brands, rural area, or the ecology in the process of following the western industrial civilization and becoming prosperous
Journalist, underground concert organizer, café manager, editor, photographer, film director, author of three books, critic, Chaowei’s experiences defies summarizing. As one of the co-founders, CNEX became Chaowei’s latest project. His believe: CNEX will become the New Youth of our visually networked society.
※The 1st New Asia Film Festival (Vancouver), 2008
※Beijing Independent Film Festival, 2008
※The 1st VARIFAIR International Film Festival, 2009
※Southern Appalachian International Film Festival, 2009