Analysis of Event Industry

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CHINA'S ECONOMY AFTER FIFTY YEARS: RETROSPECT AND PROSPECT Thomas G. Rawski University of Pittsburgh September 1999 As the People's Republic of China celebrates its fiftieth anniversary, economists look back on a remarkable kaleidoscope of events and policy shifts that, despite episodes of vast suffering and waste, have brought enormous material benefits to China's teeming masses. The economy inherited by China's new Communist leaders in 1949 was overwhelmingly agrarian, ravaged by twelve years of warfare, and wracked by hyperinflation. Despite the strains imposed by China's participation in the Korean War, the new government quickly resolved difficult short-term economic obstacles and embarked upon a long-term process of…show more content…
Many Chinese found themselves wondering why their supposedly superior socialist system lagged far behind the achievements of nearby Chinese populations laboring under the burdens of British colonialism or the defeated remnants of China's prewar Kuomintang government. As one Party official put it: "just because we are socialist does not mean we must remain poor!" These sentiments made many Chinese highly receptive to Deng Xiaoping's reform slogans that targeted ideological rigidities ("Black cat, white cat, who cares as long as it catches mice?") and egalitarian preoccupations ("Let some people get rich first"). In reviewing the astonishing outcome of the economic reforms begun during the late 1970s, it is essential to recall their modest scope. The initial reforms included three components. China's reform leaders allowed impoverished localities to experiment with household farming. This innovation spread like wildfire, evidently because most Chinese farmers welcomed the chance to escape from collective agriculture. By the time China's leaders formally ratified the "household responsibility system," local initiative had transformed the vast majority of Chinese farmers into tenants who now leased plots from local collectives. A second reform exposed China's largely autarchic economy to expanded flows of international trade and investment. Policy initiatives were initially confined to four "Special
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