I think you miss understand me then, I wasn't saying China would become some dominant RL nation. But the NRL, well Canberra and Manly, were looking at taking an NRL game there and I think the NRL should be dong more to promote the game in the Far East, as they will need a new market to grow into, with Australia and NZ having only small populations. Even the AFL have taken games to China, so why can't the NRL? Yeah it would be about money, but that's the point!
I don't think the idea of development officers is unrealistic or fantasy. These areas have done well to grow the sport with no money, so imagine a development officer going into schools and promoting and developing the game. It's more important imo to have domestic grassroots, and schools playing RL in countries, than trying to big up another nation with heritage players.
In terms of a new powerhouse rising, the only likely candidates I can see anytime soon are France or Italy (if they're stuffed with Aussies).
Agreed but I think you could add PNG to that. Second most populated country In Australasia, RL is national sport , gave England a good game during last WC in Australia?