I believe China will be in the near future a strong linux partner, because of the "modern socialism" they are at right now. Their commitment toward linux is obvious, they can make a choice without much "interference" as you may notice in other countries. Sooner than we think they might be manufacturing good pc and exporting them with linux :-)
They are powerfull enough to obligate, for example, hardware vendors to develop adequate linux drivers for their products, making it a farer "game". I also believe that they would contribute with their high-tech know-how to significantly improve linux as it is today. Chinese authorities and technicians must have been astonished when they first had contact with linux and open source, wondering how could "capitalist" nations produce something so powerfull and yet free. Lastly, the purpose of this thread is wide ranged, i would like you to share your thoughts about it, and almost forgot here
is a link to an old (2001) article i found that might contradict some of the stuff i just said
Obs: for those who had not the chance to study or read anything about "the great leap forward" or the "opium war" i advise you to google search it and you'd be surprised.