‘China Model’ Faces Five Difficulties, Says Scholar18 November, 2010 at 13:15 | Posted in China | Leave a comment
Tags: China, Society
Though the Chinese economy appears to be charging ahead, there are five potentially fatal contradictions in store which could derail everything, according to a Chinese professor.
Xiao Gongqin, Political Science Professor at Jiaotong University in Shanghai feels that the lopsided polarization of Chinese society is a result of authoritarian party rule, despite the opening up of markets and other economic reforms.
In a recently published article titled “China Model: Leading to Wealthy Government, Poor Citizens ” on the official People’s Forum Network, Prof. Xiao pointed out that China has now formed a “Strong government, weak society” model and is facing five major difficulties.
Under a “Strong government, weak society” structure, society has little influence over the government. Corruption by government officials and illegal behavior by officials then cannot be corrected. Peoples’ retaliating against the unjust system is then seen as the root of instability, and suppressed by the government. But after a while, the corruption problem becomes more difficult to fix.
Two: Rich Government, Poor Society
Government departments and officials collude with monopoly interests groups and extract wealth from society through taxes, license fees, etc. Because a weak society does not have the ability to resist the plunder, the direct result is a severe shortage of domestic demand, and this in turn negatively affects China’s long term economic development.
Three: Extreme Polarization of Society
Thus, government officials and monopoly businesses form a mutually beneficial exchange between those with power and those with money. Especially in China’s real estate market, they have gained huge profits through this exclusive exchange. On the other hand, high housing prices make it very difficult for the middle class and general public to accumulate wealth. This is what causes the polarization.
Four: State Monopolies
Xiao also considers it a problem that the ruling party strongly believes that state owned enterprises (SOE) are the best safeguard for national security and the protection of the current political system. To maintain the monopoly officials support SOEs with favorable policies, even though these policies have been proven to be inefficient.
Five: Lack of Education and Creativity
The last problem, according to Xiao, is that strong government monopoly culture and lack of educational resources results in a creativity deficit in society.
Xiao also thinks that Bejing’s current strategy of maintaining social stability has been counterproductive. When the strong government only uses administrative and economic methods to suppress social conflicts, it only achieves short term results.