Jeannette Di Louie: What China wants, China gets. Except, it seems, in the case of Brazil. Only a few years ago, the two nations seemed to have the best of relationships, what with Brazil’s abundance of natural resources and China’s desperate need for them.
The Asian powerhouse struggles to support its rapidly expanding middle class, which is hungry for a taste of the good life. Its citizens are gulping down Starbucks lattes, indulging in increasingly diverse culinary habits, buying up new houses and treating themselves to everything from automobiles to jewelry to electronics.
While China has its own reserves of coal, oil, natural gas, uranium and other important commodities, it doesn’t have nearly enough to satiate its citizens. Or at least it can’t extract what it has fast enough to keep up.
Because of that, China has cultivated relations with neighboring countries such as Australia… crossed continents into Africa… and generally overturned rocks everywhere in the hopes of continuing to generate the exceptional GDP growth it’s become known for.
Then there’s Brazil, which is a commodity-filled dream at