Twin Engines of China's Growth

From: English Edition of Qiushi Journal Updated: 2011-09-20 10:44
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Twin Engines of China's Growth 

Jiang Xiaojuan

 China has enjoyed thirty years of fast growth with an annual growth rate of 9.7% since the introduction of the reform and opening up policy. China has made great progress in developing its economic system and increasing the degree of openness while maintaining overall stability in Chinese society. This is a rare case of success in modernization in the world. From the perspective of overall demand, China is a large country whose growth has been driven by the twin engines of domestic demand and foreign demand. China is taking advantage of its large population and huge domestic market to make domestic demand the main factor driving economic development, with domestic demand accounting for over 90% of total demand. At the same time, China has been taking advantage of the opportunities presented by opening up to make good use of the positive role of external demand in adjusting imbalances in the domestic structure of the factors of production, increasing employment, increasing workers' incomes and relieving pressure on resources and the environment. Consequently, external demand's contribution has become greater, but its role is still smaller than that of domestic demand. China will remain in a period of accelerated industrialization and urbanization, accelerated application of information technology and accelerated growth of markets and accelerated globalization for a long time, so the potential for expanding domestic demand is fairly large. Export volume will continue to increase due to the obvious comparative advantages presented by China’s economic development. The above facts show that the pattern of a large country with growth driven by the twin engines of domestic demand and external demand will continue to work.

(From Management World, No.6, 2010) 

 

Strategy and Achievements in Ten Years of Large-Scale Development of the Western Region

Zhou Minliang

 It has been ten years since the State Council launched the strategy of large-scale development of the western region in 2000. The strategy was smoothly carried out during implementation of the Tenth and Eleventh Five-Year Plans resulting in eye-opening achievements. The development environment in the western region has improved and the development situation has taken on a brand-new look. One, economic growth in the region has been faster than ever before. The GRP of the western region from 2000 to 2008 jumped from 1.66 trillion to 5.8 trillion yuan, an average annual increase rate of 11.7%, higher than the average national rate. Second, personal incomes have increased substantially. Since the introduction of the strategy, incomes of the residents of some provinces in the western region have doubled. Third, substantial progress has been made in infrastructure development. The central government has been constantly strengthening support for infrastructure development since launching of the strategy to improve transportation, water conservancy, energy, communications and urban development in the western region. There were 102 key projects launched from 2000 to 2008 requiring a total investment of 1.7 trillion yuan. Key projects included the Qinghai-Tibet Railway, the project to send natural gas and electricity from western to eastern regions, construction of national trunk highways in the western region and large-scale water conservancy projects. Fourth, the ecological system in the western region has been improved substantially. A total of 403 million mu (about 26.9 million hectares) of land were covered with trees in the period leading up to the end of 2008, including 139 million mu (about 9.3 million hectares) of formerly cultivated land that was returned to forests. Fifth, substantial progress was made in social development. Good progress was also made in poverty alleviation through development and development of the social safety net, education, health care and culture in the western region since the strategy was implemented.

(From Study and Practice, No.5, 2010)

 

Strategic Goals, Reforms and Innovations in Chinese Higher Education

Yuan Guiren

 The Chinese government made the important decision to draft the National Medium and Long-term Program for Education Reform and Development in August 2008, which is a master plan for Chinese education leading up to the year 2020. The plan pointed out that the total enrollment in higher education will increase from 29 million to 35.5 million students with the gross enrollment rate increasing from 24.2% to 40% over the next ten years. In summary, the core task in reform and development of Chinese higher education is to improve quality at this new historical starting point, paying more attention to making a strategic shift in development concept, paying more attention to making innovation in the model and reform of the system and paying more attention to establishing an assessment system to ensure quality. One, we will adhere to the philosophy of putting people first and deepen reform of the model for cultivation of personnel in institutions of higher education. Two, we need to establish a scientific system for cultivating and evaluating personnel so that college graduates better satisfy the needs of the country. Three, we will increase government spending and form a life-long education system that ensures cultivation and development of personnel. The percentage of GDP that the government spends for education will be increased to 4% by 2012. In order to realize the overall goal of ensuring that “everyone can get as much education as they want,” we are working to gradually create conditions for a flexible education system that allows people to leave their jobs to further their education and allows teachers to take temporary employment in enterprises and scientific and technical personnel in enterprises to take temporary positions in schools. We will take full advantage of the important role of institutions of higher education in life-long learning and create the conditions for making China a learning society in which all the people continue to study throughout their lives.

(From China Higher Education, No. 11, 2010)

 

Inclusive Growth and Making Basic Social Services More Widely Available

Sun Ling

 President Hu Jintao introduced the key eye-opening term of “inclusive growth” in his speech at the opening ceremony of the Fifth APEC Human Resources Development Ministerial Meeting on September 16, 2010. He stressed in his speech that to realize inclusive growth, to resolve the social issues emerging from economic development and to lay a solid social foundation for long-term economic development are all major topics that countries need to work on together. China’s sustained rapid growth over the last three decades since the introduction of the reform and opening up policy has drawn world-wide attention, but at the same time, the income gap between rich and poor has been growing. The Gini index, an indicator of income disparity, has been above the international alarm level of 0.4 and slowly rising in China since 2000. Some problems affecting people’s lives which have been overshadowed by the rapid economic growth are to become major issues in recent years. Unequal access to opportunities due to defects in the market system, public policies and laws and regulations in the process of transforming the economy is a major cause of income disparity in China and they must be addressed with effective measures. Against this background, President Hu Jintao has called for “inclusive growth.” This not only demonstrates the Chinese government’s commitment to balanced economic and social development, efforts to improve people’s lives and improve income distribution, but also represents a more thorough application of the Scientific Outlook on Development in the administration of government affairs. From the perspective of policy-making, inclusive growth also offers an effective way to build a harmonious society in all respects. 

(From Guangming Daily, October 19, 2010) 

  

China's Path of Peaceful Development

Wang Wenbin

 To put it simply, the path of peaceful development taken by China is to foster a peaceful international environment to promote domestic development and at the same time contribute to world peace through the country’s development. This is basically determined by conditions in the country and the international situation. China is a developing country with a large population of over 1.3 billion. The Chinese government and people consider modernization to be in the most important and fundamental interests of the country, and for this reason are committed to safeguarding the current peaceful and stable international environment and have remained a staunch force working to safeguard world peace. China's path of peaceful development is totally different from the paths taken by countries of the modern times that have become powerful through expansion and war in that the Chinese path has Chinese characteristics. The difference can be seen in the following ways: Safeguarding peace is a fundamental prerequisite for China's development; Chinese development is powerfully driven by opening up the country; one prominent characteristic of the Chinese path is strong cooperation and the inevitable consequence of Chinese development is benefit for all. China’s peaceful development is increasingly demonstrating strong vigor and vitality and has had a profound impact on China and the world. No country has ever taken this path before in human history so the road is bound to be a little rough. Although the path is still being laid out and improved, China is committed to this path, which is bound to bring a bright future for China and the whole world as well.

(From People's Daily, October 18, 2010)

 

The Financial Crisis and Balanced Development of the World Economy

Chen Deming

 The international financial crisis has posed severe challenges to the world economy. As the world economy gradually climbs from the bottom of the crisis, fair, free and open trade has increasingly become a crucial force in promoting recovery. Global trade, investment and finance are so interconnected and influential today that no single country can isolate itself from the rest of the world and recover on its own. We must take a rational view of the relationship between the financial crisis and imbalances in the world economy. The crisis, first and foremost, was a result of a periodic adjustment in the world economy. In addition, the defects in the structure of global management aggravated economic fluctuations. Finally, inadequate financial oversight was the direct cause of the financial crisis. A few countries have been closely watching Chinese trade and hoping that a sharp appreciation of the Chinese currency will help “put the world economy back in balance.” This view is too unilateral and narrow-minded and ignores two basic facts: First, both in theory and in practice, appreciation of a national currency has a very limited impact on adjusting trade balance. Second, in developing its economy China has always worked with and shared responsibilities with other countries as well as shared the benefits. In summary, balanced world economic development depends on the concerted efforts of the international community. 

(From International Economic Cooperation, No.5, 2010)

 

The “Tao” of Chinese Culture

Yang Guorong

 The Tao (meaning “the way”) of Chinese culture specifically refers to the “Tao of heaven” and the “Tao of humankind.” Something approaching a definition of the first “Tao,” mainly concerning nature and the universe, was found in Zhou Yi, one of ancient China's earliest classic works, where it is written, “all the invisible phenomena constitute the Tao and all the visible phenomena constitute Qi.” The former is first of all differentiated from the wide variety of phenomena we sense in the world of experience. Tao, as the invisible phenomena of the universe, represents the common nature of the diverse array of phenomena. Therefore, Tao is the basis and fundamental source of unity for the infinitely diverse world. At the same time, Tao represents the general principle governing change and development in the world. In addition to the “Tao of heaven,” “Tao” also refers to the “Tao of humankind,” a broad concept that covers humans and all their activities and social organizations. It is manifested as a general principle governing social activities and historical change, as illustrated in a way by the saying, “For a good person, Tao means benevolence and justice.” “The Tao of humankind” is a broad concept covering social, cultural, political and ethical ideals and is also understood as values and principles embodied in the culture, politics and morals of society. Tao not only refers to the principle governing the world itself, but also covers humankind’s awareness and understanding of the world. This awareness of this abstract truth finds concrete expression in Chinese culture as a process of “viewing the world according to the Tao.” In understanding the world for example, this means that one can only see the true situation by overcoming prejudices. The so-called “Daily Tao” is an expression that stresses that Tao is manifested in and is an integral part of daily life. At the same time, the expression, “Tao can not be separated from humankind,” also stipulates that Tao is not separate from the practical activities of humankind.

(From Wenhui Daily, May 8, 2010)

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