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China is starting to be more and more remarked on the superpowers' podium, but this surely didn't happened overnight, so what would be that decade that was very auspicious for China, and why?

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Are you asking when China began being referred to as a superpower? –  American Luke Aug 18 '12 at 13:12
    
@Luke I didn't thought about that, I thought more about when it started to make a difference, and be also an economic superpower not just a military superpower that has the nukes. –  Eduard Florinescu Aug 18 '12 at 13:17
    
@EduardFlorinescu, I'd say during Deng Xiao Pings rule. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deng_Xiaoping –  Russell Aug 18 '12 at 13:36
    
@Russel In your Wikipedia link I found this self-explenatory image: GDP of China between 1952-2005 it seem that the GDP started exploding after 1992, it seems that Soviet Union leaved the baton to another country. –  Eduard Florinescu Aug 18 '12 at 17:01
    
@Russell So probably you are right and Deng_Xiaoping rule was the „baking time”. And can be also that after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Europe and US began a shopping spree to celebrate the victory. –  Eduard Florinescu Aug 18 '12 at 17:22
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At least two major events in the past 25 years led to the rise of China as a superpower.

The first was the collapse of the Soviet Union (then the number two power) in 1991. This created a power vacuum with the United States as a clear number one, but room for other possible number twos (Japan, Germany or China).

the second event was China's joining the World Trade Organization in 2002, and thereafter exerting her influence (with the largest number of people in the world) on world trade. Once China abandoned her former isolation, her rise was only a matter of time. The current decade is when she hit "critical mass."

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I don't think China's entry to the WTO explains by itself China's current economic strength, as GDP growth was already pretty strong well before that. –  lins314159 Aug 19 '12 at 23:30
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