China's economic transformation
The People's Republic of China, home to some 1.2 billion people, is one of the fastest-growing economies in the world today. Over the past twenty-five years, China's transition from a centrally planned economy towards a "socialist market economy" has generated robust GDP growth rates that averaged 9.5% per year from 1980 to 2004, and 9% in 2005. Endowed with a GDP of $1.65 trillion, China is now the fourth-largest economy in the world. In a nutshell, China's growth is driven by its vast labor-intensive manufacturing sector. China has become the world's factory with the growth in the share of its merchandise exports quadrupling between 1983 and 2002. While China's labor-intensive, manufacturing-led development is widely credited for large-scale employment creation (and thereby the reduction of poverty), what is not always appreciated is the role of the reforms that preceded it, namely, the first stage of the reform program (1978-1984) in the countryside.
Copyright © Centre for World Dialogue 2007
Sharma, S. D. (2007). China's economic transformation. Global Dialogue, 9(1/2), 29-38.