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supremacy in China. Which of the great countries of the world shall most largely profit by the increasing foreign trade of China will depend largely upon the relative activity, intelligence and perseverance of the manufacturers, exporters and business organizations of these countries at the present time and in the immediate future. What shall be the part of the American business man in this development? What, indeed, shall be the part of the great American nation therein? We hear much these days, often in derision, of “dollar diplomacy.” We are really only children learning the a,b,c's of the game. For real "dollar diplomacy" let us look to Germany, the country which by intelligent study of conditions, the careful training of men, and the lavish expenditure of money has built up a great foreign commerce that is bringing to her wealth and a great world influence. Under the auspices of the German government large numbers of young men are taught the languages of foreign countries to which they are subsequently sent as missionaries of commerce. The recent activity of our government through its consular and diplomatic agents in coöperating with commercial organizations in developing and extending our trade with foreign countries is greatly to be commended.
In considering trade relations with the Chinese it should be borne in mind that they recognize as their ideal the highest standard of business honor. It is probable that of no other people is this so true, and it should prove a strong incentive to the extension of our commercial relations with them, To quote again from Mr. Jameson:
No people are commercially more honest or have a more exalted idea of the sacredness of a contract-either written, verbal, or merely implied—than the Chinese merchant, banker or contractor of any kind, unless contaminated by dealings with unreliable foreign hongs at the open ports. The non-official word of a Chinese is usually as good as his bond, and his bond is as good as the wealth of his family. In fifteen years of dealing with Chinese merchants and contractors of all sorts I have never found them maliciously doing work contrary to the specifications or attempting to break their contract even if it was a losing one for them.
During the past year, as was to be expected, there was a considerable decrease in the volume of foreign trade in cen
tral and southern China, the districts most seriously affected by the revolutionary movement. Recent reports, however, indicate a present practically normal resumption of shipments. While in the Manchurian, Chihlian and Shantung ports there was a considerable increase in the volume of foreign trade, in the Yangtse ports, where the most severe fighting occurred, there was a great decrease in business. In the seventeen southern ports tributary to Hongkong, the comparative figures of 1910 and 1911 were as follows:
The chief loss during the period accordingly came in imports of foreign goods and to a considerable extent repre sented cancellation of foreign orders. The more serious loss in exports later, came in January and February 1912.
In view of the recent disturbed condition of the country trade statistics do not possess the face value that they otherwise would, and need careful analysis in order that their true significence may be understood. In many lines, such for example as piece-goods, American drill, flannels, jeans, sheetings, shirtings, etc., the markets became seriously congested because of the stoppage of orders as a result of the revolutionary disturbances, but the finely organized coöperative trade guilds made it possible to carry these enormous stocks without serious resultant financial disturbance, and there is now renewed activity all along the line. The accumulated stocks having been finally disposed of there is every prospect of a resumption of trade in large volume. Recent reports indicate a rapid change in the attire of the Chinese and the adoption of western styles. So marked is this movement that it is reported that sewing machines cannot be imported rapidly enough to satisfy the demand. There is also a lively demand for fabrics of various kinds, particularly the cheaper qualities of woollen and cotton goods.
Organization and coöperation are necessary factors in the successful introduction of American goods. As an example of the efficient and effective organization for trade in China we may cite the Standard Oil Company, with its constantly expanding trade, especially in the interior districts. A system of coöperation that would build up a similar organization to handle American cotton goods and other sundries would go far toward solving the problems of American export trade.
A comparison of the exports of cotton piece goods for the past four years from the United Kingdom and the United States to China and Hongkong follows. The British figures are for calendar years, while the American are for fiscal years ended June 30:
With the starting of factories there is also a great demand for machinery of all kinds. With this in view what should be the attitude of the American manufacturer and exporter in the matter? How shall he proceed to take advantage of the situation and develop an export trade with China?
Comparative statements of the years 1910 and 1911 of the import and export trade of leading trade centres have recently been received through consular channels. These are too elaborate for incorporation in full in a paper of this scope, but some excerpts from them may prove interesting and enlightening.
Shanghai is, of course, far ahead of other ports in the matter of imports and exports. It is interesting to note that notwithstanding the serious effect of the revolution on trade
during the latter part of 1911, the gross value of the merchandise arriving and departing, according to the report of the national maritime customs, amounted to $314,731,444, an increase of $3,824,174 over 1910, and constituting a record.
The following table gives the gross and net trade of Shanghai in 1910 and 1911:
8,468 518,451 113,030
31,918 130,317 460,765 $222,301 2,954,295 1,711,469 2,106,737
474,141 1,108,138 $351,256
1,540,518 1,146,441 2,152,374
Piece goods, pieces...
Woolen and cotton mixtures, yards.
Albumen and yolk, cwt.
138,524 117,833,678 8,396,208
136,882 88,365,977 7,531,415
773,580 223,026 955,270 470,054 271,240
10,270 5,028,375 $1,268,202
69,876 361,008 18,130
4,950 14,761 540,340
44,312 380,253 16,345
7,122 19,048 460,534
Raw, spun, cocoons, waste, etc., cwt...
The exports from Shanghai to the United States decreased from $14,669,206 in 1910 to $12,878,281 in 1911.
The following table gives the value of the principal articles thus exported:
3,473 2,520 1,086 49,014
4,205 31,041 12,793 15,468