China will be the world's largest economy within a lifetime and Australia needs to prepare for it. This is one of the key messages in The Australian National University's (ANU) 2017 China Story Yearbook, launched on Monday.
The influential China Story Yearbook, produced by the Australian Centre on China in the World, is an annual collection of research into key issues concerning China's economy, law, environment, Internet, medicine, religion, education, foreign affairs, and culture.
The book's editor Associate Professor Jane Golley said 2017 was the most pivotal year for China in the 25 years she has been researching the country.
"China is not a rising power, it's a risen power," she said. "They've grown strong, they've grown rich and they've done it all using their own unique approach - which is making many people increasingly uncomfortable.
Dr Graeme Smith of the ANU Department of Pacific Affairs contributed a chapter on new Chinese migrants to Papua New Guinea and said China was struggling to manage its global image given the behaviour of some of its wealthiest citizens living overseas.
"There's been a change in the way the Chinese State sees its citizens abroad. It presents an idea that if you are a Chinese merchant in another country, the State has your back," Dr Smith said.
"But often Chinese migrants do not embody the values of the Chinese State.
"Some traders, who are becoming very rich, are engaging in activities that would definitely not be approved by the Chinese State."
The theme of the 2017 China Story Yearbook is prosperity, and the book will be launched by Shadow Assistant Treasurer Dr Andrew Leigh with an introduction by ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Brian Schmidt.