August 3, 2009

China Will Be World’s Top Superpower

13 of 25

Majorities or pluralities in 13 of 25 countries surveyed believe that China will — or already has — replaced the U.S. as the world’s leading superpower.

Majorities or pluralities in 13 of 25 countries in the 2009 Pew Global Attitudes survey believe that China will — or already has — replaced the U.S. as the world’s leading superpower. In China itself, a 59%-majority thinks that their country will eventually replace the U.S. as the leading superpower, and an additional 8% believe that this has already occurred. While there is no country in which a majority or plurality say that China has already replaced the U.S. as a superpower, many respondents in several countries, in addition to China itself, believe that China will eventually replace the U.S. as the world’s leading power. However, majorities in Japan (59%), Jordan (56%), Israel (56%) and Lebanon (54%) are confident that the U.S. will maintain its superpower status. Almost two-thirds of Egyptians (63%) say that China will never replace the U.S. as the sole superpower — up from 55% last year. A majority of Americans (57%) think that the U.S. will never lose its place to China, but one-third of Americans disagree and believe that the U.S. will either eventually be replaced by China as the world’s superpower (26%) or that it has already happened (7%). Western Europeans are more likely this year than last year to say that China will never replace the U.S. as the world’s leader. For instance, more than four-in-ten in Spain (44%) and France (43%) now say that the U.S. will retain its superpower position, an increase of nine points in both countries since 2008. But in all four Western European countries surveyed, a majority or plurality believes that China has already replaced the U.S. or will eventually replace the U.S. as the world’s leader. Significant minorities in Mexico (17%), Argentina (16%) and India (15%) believe that China has already replaced the U.S. as the leading superpower. Read More