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Why Should Zheng He’s Voyages Be Stopped

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    Between 1405 and 1433, Ming sent out 7 gigantic voyages under Zheng He. Ming admiral did not send out people to search for trade, but to display China’s might to the world. They wanted the world to recognize them, and to bring back precious valuables. We, the Minister of Revenue think that Zheng He’s voyages should be stopped because they are greatly unprofitable. Firstly, Zheng He’s voyages are greatly unbeneficial, and in the modern world, this can lead towards being bankrupt. Zheng He’s voyages were in total composed of approximately 2000 ships, including sixty huge Treasure ships, costing the combined revenue of 13 provinces.

    Secondly, valuables such as gold, silver, porcelain, silk were exchanged; however, most of the treasury was spent on Zheng He’s voyage, very little return to the state- therefore wasted myriads of money. Although Zheng He returned with precious valuables, how did this benefit the state? In addition, Zheng He brought along thousands and thousands of sailors, builders and repairmen, soldiers, medical personnel, and scholars of foreign ways. However, these myriads of people died off during these voyages, which are just wasting innocent human lives.

    Lastly, merchants were considered the lowest of the social order because they do not produce anything. The materials needed for the voyages were produced by workers working for free; therefore, the workers were reluctant to work. All they do is make money from farmers and artisans who actually produce trade goods. Also, the merchants try to avoid taxes by sea trading, since each province and each market town imposes its own taxes. Sea trading avoids all duties and reduces costs as much as 80%, and these cause lack of revenue from taxes. In conclusion, due to these reasons, Zheng He’s voyages should be stopped.

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