If you count non-merchandise trade (service, license fees, etc), China is running a deficit against US so the figure is even smaller.
The Economist also shows some interest tidbits
- "According to a recent Harris Poll, four in ten people believe that China will be stronger than America within a decade. More than half are concerned about China becoming militarily stronger within that same period; and the same proportion reckon China will have a negative effect on the future of America's economy."
I suppose we can use GDP and military spending as the proxy for comparison
- In 2004
- GDP: China: $1.65 trillion, Per capita: $1,260; in PPP terms ($7.26tn, $5540/cap)
- GDP: USA: $11.75 trillion, Per capita: $39,700
- Defense budget: China Official 2004 $24bn, SIPRI (Stockholm) estimate 35.4bn, Rand estimate $31-38: USA $399bn
- In 10 years, assuming GDP growth for China is 8% and US 4% (chances are that 8% is way too optimistic), population growth 1% for both
- GDP: $3.56tn vs $17.39 tn; GDP/cap: $2,462 vs $53,194
- Even if we use the dubious PPP to measure (assuming prices of food and houses remain at current relative level, compared with the US), China's GDP will only be at $15.56tn and $10,832/cap
- Assuming defense budget/GDP ratios do not change (1.45%-2.3% for China and 3.4% for USA), in 2014 it would be $52-82bn for China and $591bn for USA (PPP does not make sense here according RAND/etc, since a lot of the spending is to purchase arms using hard currency)
The media has now trained us to do our own homework and research.