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A Consideration Of China’s Incomplete Retreat From State Capitalism

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines China's political economy since the 1949 revolution from a state capitalist perspective. It charts the gradual retreat of state control over the economy following the death of Mao Zedong in 1976, and the adoption of Deng Xiaoping's Four Modernizations in 1978 that led to the 'dual track' approach. The chapter concentrates on the factors that have led the Chinese economy to achieve unprecedented growth rates for more than a quarter of a century; that is, increases in trade, investment, and the setting up of Special Enterprise Zones in the coastal provinces. It also examines some of the consequences of this economic boom, and argues that there has been the creation of what can be generalized as 'two Chinas'-the booming coastal provinces, and the relatively backward Central and Western provinces. The chapter attempts to gauge the political implications of the retreat of state capitalism.

Keywords: China's incomplete retreat; China's political economy; Mao Zedong; state capitalism



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