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Global Economy

中国40年改革进程反思

Bert Hofman's picture
Also available in: English
摄影 ©李文勇/世界银行

40年前的12月,邓小平发表了具有历史意义的讲话《解放思想,实事求是,团结一致向前看》,开启了使中国成为世界第二大经济体的40年改革进程。下个10年,中国将成为二战以来从低收入进入高收入行列的少数几个国家之一。

了解中国走过的路、做出历史性决定的背景及其对中国经济的影响,对未来的决策者是有益的借鉴。随着越来越多的国家把中国看成效法的榜样,这种反思对于世界各国愈显重要。在去年11月召开的中共十九大上,中国自改革开放以来首次承担起这一责任。

在某种意义上,中国的改革是很主流的。中国开放贸易和投资,开展物价改革,实行所有权结构多元化,强化产权,控制通胀,维持高储蓄率和投资率。但这么说是把中国的改革简单化了,模糊了中国改革的实质,即,中国体制改革采取的独特步骤提供了有意义的经验,其渐进式改革模式与东欧和前苏联形成鲜明对照。虽然中国和其他转轨经济体常常被加以比较,但他们无论是在初始经济条件、政治发展还是外部环境方面都截然不同。

作为以农业为主的世界最贫困的国家之一,中国在经历大跃进失败和文革破坏之后伤痕累累,与全球经济几乎毫无联系,工业效率低下,但也远不像东欧和前苏联那么集中。或许最重要的是,由于中国保持了政治体制的延续性,所以才能集中精力进行经济和社会转轨而不是政治转轨。

同大部分拉美国家的改革做比较似乎也不合适巴西、墨西哥和阿根廷远比中国更接近市场经济制度,而且他们的改革——自由化和宏观经济稳定——着眼点在宏观经济稳定,而中国的改革则以整个经济体制转型为目的。因此没有必要将“华盛顿共识”与“北京共识”相提并论,两者采取的方式服务于完全不同的目的。

Reflections on forty years of China’s reforms

Bert Hofman's picture
Also available in: 中文
Photo: ©Li Wenyong/World Bank

Forty years ago in December, Deng Xiaoping delivered his historic speech "Emancipate the mind, seeking truth from facts and unite as one to face the future." This triggered four decades of reforms that have transformed China into the world’s second largest economy.  By some time in the next decade, China will be among the few countries in the world that will have transitioned from low income to high income status since World War II. 

Understanding the path China traveled, the circumstances under which historical decisions were made, and their effects on the course of China’s economy will inform future decision makers.  Increasingly, this reflection is important to the rest of the world as more and more countries see China as an example to emulate.  At the 19th Party Congress in November 2017, China accepted this mantle for the first time since the onset of reforms.

In some ways, China’s reforms were fairly mainstream.  The country opened up for trade and foreign investment, liberalized prices, diversified ownership, strengthened property rights, kept inflation under control, and maintained high savings and investment.  But this is simplifying the reforms and obfuscates the essence of China’s reforms: the unique steps China took reforming its system are what makes its experience of interest (see the Annex). Its gradual approach to reform was in sharp contrast to Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.  Although often compared, China and other transition countries were simply too different in terms of initial economic conditions, political development, and external environment.  

Predominantly rural and among the poorest nations on earth, China was marred by the failure of the Great Leap Forward and the political disruptions during the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Integration into the global economy was minimal. Industry was inefficient, but also far less concentrated than in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.  Perhaps most importantly, because China retained political continuity, the country could focus on an economic and social transition instead of a political one.

Comparison with much of the Latin American reforms also seems out of place. Brazil, Mexico and Argentina were far closer to a market-based system than China, and their reforms—liberalization and macroeconomic stability—were focused on macroeconomic stabilization, whereas China’s reforms aimed for a transformation of the economic system as a whole.  So there is no need to juxtapose the “Washington Consensus” with a “Beijing Consensus:” the approaches taken served very different purposes indeed.

How Islamic finance is helping fuel Malaysia’s green growth

Victoria Kwakwa's picture
Photo: bigstock/ f9photos

Income growth is not the sole aim of economic development. An equally important, albeit harder to quantify objective is a sense of progress for the entire community, and a confidence that prosperity is sustainable and shared equitably across society for the long term.  

The Philippines: Resurrecting Manufacturing in a Services Economy

Birgit Hansl's picture
In recent years, the Philippines has ranked among the world's fastest-growing economies but needs to adjust to the demands of a dynamic global economy.

The Philippines is at a fork in the road. Despite good results on the growth front, trends observed in trade competitiveness, Global Value Chain (GVC) integration and product space evolution, send worrisome signals. The country has solid fundamentals and remarkable human assets to leapfrog into the 4th Industrial Revolution – where the distinction between goods and services have become obsolete. Yet it does not get the most out of this growth, especially with regards to long-term development prospects. In order to do so, the government will have to make the right policy choices.

Phenomenal development: New MOOC draws economic policy lessons from South Korea’s transformation

Sheila Jagannathan's picture

The World Bank Group’s Open Learning Campus (OLC) launched a free Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) today — Policy Lessons from South Korea’s Development — through the edX platform, with approximately 7,000 global learners already registered. In this MOOC, prominent representatives of academic and research institutions in South Korea and the United States narrate a multi-faceted story of Korea’s economic growth. 
 
Why focus on South Korea? South Korea's transformation from poverty to prosperity in just three decades was virtually miraculous. Indeed, by almost any measure, South Korea is one of the greatest development success stories. South Korea’s income per capita rose nearly 250 times, from a mere $110 in 1962 to $27,440 in 2015. This rapid growth was achieved despite geopolitical uncertainties and a lack of natural resources. Today, South Korea is a major exporter of products such as semiconductors, automobiles, telecommunications equipment, and ships.

Source: World Development Indicators, 12/16/2016

Services as a new driver of growth for Thailand

Ulrich Zachau's picture
Also available in: ภาษาไทย

There’s a good chance you work in the service sector. Services account for 17 million jobs in Thailand, or approximately 40 percent of the Thai labor force. It encompasses diverse industries such as tourism, retail, health, communications, transportation and many sought-after professions such as architects, engineers, lawyers and doctors. Many Thai parents aspire for their children to join the service sector, and the sector carries many of Thailand’s economic hopes and ambitions.

ภาคบริการ: ปัจจัยขับเคลื่อนเศรษฐกิจตัวใหม่ของประเทศไทย

Ulrich Zachau's picture
Also available in: English

มีโอกาสสูงที่คุณทำงานอยู่ในภาคบริการ  ประเทศไทยมีงานในภาคบริการถึง 17 ล้านตำแหน่งหรือร้อยละ 40 ของกำลังแรงงานไทย ภาคบริการครอบคลุมหลายอุตสาหกรรมทั้ง การท่องเที่ยว การค้าปลีก สุขภาพ การสื่อสาร การขนส่ง รวมถึงวิชาชีพที่เป็นที่ต้องการ อาทิ สถาปนิก วิศวกร นักกฎหมาย และแพทย์  พ่อแม่หลายคนหวังว่าลูกจะสามารถเข้าทำงานในภาคบริการซึ่งเป็นภาคที่ประเทศไทยได้ฝากความหวังด้านเศรษฐกิจและความมุ่งมั่นที่จะก้าวไปสู่ประเทศที่มีรายได้สูงไว้

ឥឡូវកម្ពុជាគឺជាប្រទេសដែលសេដ្ឋកិច្ចមានចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប៖ តើមានន័យយ៉ាងណា?

Sodeth Ly's picture
Also available in: English
កំណើនសេដ្ឋកិច្ចរយ:ពេលពីរទសវត្សបានជួយកម្ពុជាឲ្យក្លាយជាប្រទេសឈានមុខក្នុងការកាត់បន្ថយភាពក្រីក្រ។ ជោគជ័យលើទិដ្ឋភាពនេះមានន័យថាប្រជាជាតិអាស៊ីអគ្នេយ៍មួយនេះបានជំនះសង្គ្រាមស៊ីវិលដ៏អាក្រក់ ហើយឥឡូវត្រូវបានក្រុមធនាគារពិភពលោក (WBG)​ ចាត់ថ្នាក់ថាជាប្រទេសដែលមានចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប។
 
ប្រព័ន្ធចាត់ថ្នាក់ថ្មីឆ្នាំនេះមានមូលដ្ឋានផ្អែកលើកម្រិតគោលដែល​ WBG បង្កើតឡើងក្នុងប្រព័ន្ធមួយមានប្រភពនៅក្នុងឯកសារឆ្នាំ1989 របស់ខ្លួន ដែលគូសបញ្ជាក់វីធីសាស្រ្តនេះ។​  តារាងខាងក្រោមបង្ហាញកម្រិតផ្សេងគ្នានៃការចាត់ថ្នាក់ផ្អែកលើចំណូលជាតិដុល (GNI):

 
កម្រិតគោល GNI កក្កដា 2016
ចំណូលទាប <$1,025
ចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប $1,026 - $4,035
ចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតខ្ពស់ $4,036 - $12,475
ចំណូលខ្ពស់ > $12,476
 

Boon or bane: Trade agreements in Malaysia

Smita Kuriakose's picture

In the past several decades Malaysia has witnessed strong economic growth and has become one of Asia’s newly industrialized countries. In one generation it transitioned successfully from low to upper-middle-income status, due in large part to outward looking policies, trade, and foreign direct investments (FDI) — which contributed to the successful diversification of the economy. Today, Malaysia faces the challenge of escaping the middle-income trap as its productivity slows and it becomes less competitive.
 
Free trade agreements (FTAs) such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Malaysia EU-FTA bring the potential for greater market access for Malaysia. This new generation of free trade agreements offers opportunities for Malaysia to strengthen reforms beyond tariff reduction, covering commitments such as competition and investment policies, non-tariff measures, intellectual property rights, labour standards, and opening up government procurement for competition.  With a market-friendly government and a strong track record of reforms, there are new opportunities for reinvigorating structural reforms to support private sector-led economic growth. Accelerating productivity growth is a key element of the 11th Malaysia Plan, which aims to bring Malaysia to high income status by 2020.
 

Cambodia is now a lower-middle income economy: What does this mean?

Sodeth Ly's picture
Also available in: Cambodian
Two decades of economic growth have helped make Cambodia a global leader in reducing poverty.
The success story means the Southeast Asian nation that overcame a vicious civil war now is classified as a lower-middle income economy by the World Bank Group (WBG).
 
The new classification this year is based on thresholds set by the WBG in a system with roots in a 1989 paper that outlined the methodology. The table below shows the different levels of classification based on Gross National Income (GNI): 
 
Threshold GNI in July 2016
Low-income <$1,025
Lower-middle income $1,026 - $4,035
Upper-middle income $4,036 - $12,475
High-income > $12,476
 

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