Mr China by Tim Clissold - review by Christopher Ondaatje

Christopher Ondaatje

The One About the Chinese Condom Factory

Mr China

By

Constable & Robinson 306pp £8.99 order from our bookshop
 

THE IDEA OF China has always exerted a pull on the adventurous type. There is a kind of entrepreneurial Westerner who just can't resist it: red flags, a billion bicycles and the largest untapped market on Earth.

This is an amazing story. It is also true; and, as everyone knows, people in the investment business hardly ever tell the truth - or not the whole truth, anyway, and certainly not about failure.

In the early Nineties, having been nominally open to foreigners for a decade, China finally opened its doors to business from abroad, and an enthusiastic Wall Street was desperate not to be left out. Thus a seasoned New York banker with twenty years of experience teamed up with a Mandarin-speaking

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