"Simpfendorfer is not just a good economist but an artful story teller who entertains as he educates. He has written a highly readable treatment of a topic of great strategic significance - the rebalancing of global wealth and power through the emerging relationship between the Islamic world and China. 'The New Silk Road' is a glimpse of the future that is easy to get into and hard to put down."
- Chas W. Freeman, Jr., former US chargÃ© at Beijing and Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.
"Despite the global economic crisis, the trajectory of the Arab and Chinese economies still match the soaring skylines of Dubai and Shanghai. Furthermore, as Ben Simpfendorfer bracingly illustrates, these are not isolated events but rather the resurrection of a Silk Road symbiosis. For all the region's troubles, this book places the Persian Gulf back where it geographically belongs: at the center of Eurasia and bending towards the overwhelming gravity of China."
- Parag Khanna, author of 'The Second World' and Senior Research Fellow at the New America Foundation
"The macroeconomics of China's rise and the nitty-gritty of Chinese businesses bargaining on the ground in the Arab world are like Parisian courtesans and Eskimos: world's apart, and nearly impossible to reconcile into a single narrative. But Ben Simpfendorfer's New Silk Road provides a Rosetta Stone to achieve just such a reconciliation. With an economists' toolbox for mapping aggregate growth, and a diarists' talent for capturing the minute, human interactions that join executives and officials from these two ancient worlds, he makes the logic, limits and significance of Sino-Arab engagement understandable."
- Daniel Rosen, Principle, Rhodium Group, LLC
"As the chief China economist for Royal Bank of Scotland in Hong Kong and a former resident of both Beirut and Damascus, Mr Simpfendorfer is well placed to tackle the subject. But although he is a professional economist, what sets Mr Simpfendorfer's book aside from the usual run of publications about the mainland's rise is not his command of macroeconomic statistics, but his grasp of how the expanding relationship between China and the Arab world works at the personal level."
- Tom Holland, South China Morning Post
About the Author
BEN SIMPFENDORFER is currently the Asia and Middle East Strategist at the Royal Bank of Scotland in Hong Kong and was previously the Senior China economist at JPMorgan in Hong Kong. Simpfendorfer has lived in Beijing, Beirut, Damascus and Hong Kong and spends most of his time working as an analyst interpreting events for the foreign business and investment community. He has spent fifteen years reading local newspapers, speaking with the everyday person on the streets of Beirut to Beijing, and assessing economic data from the two regions. He has immersed himself in the two cultures and has personally observed many of the watershed events unfold in the Arab world ad China during that time.