How we were right and wrong about China?
It is a pleasure to accept the invitation to contribute an essay to this Festschrift, celebrating Prof. Mihaly Simai’s 90th birthday. For many decades, Simai has been one of Hungary’s most productive and respected economists. His influence has spread much beyond our small country’s borders, given the many prominent positions he held at the United Nations and at other international organizations, and that so many of his publications are in English. Prof. Simai’s research productivity is amazing. He is the author (mostly) or the co-author of nearly 300 scholarly publications, 40 of them books; the rest: articles, chapters, and special studies.2 We met and interacted regularly during the 1980s at the annual meetings of the HungarianAmerican Economic Roundtable (held, alternatingly, in the US and in Hungary). During the last 30 years we met occasionally, somewhere around the world; for the past decade, in Budapest, where we both live. Talking to him has always yielded insights about analysing and interpreting contemporary global issues. Even though I am not aware that Mihaly’s main research focus has ever been China, most of his writings have a global dimension. He has often mentioned China’s experiences, in various context.