The Politics of the Economy
This chapter identifies the methods by which the CCP brought China under centralized control: the collectivization of agriculture and industrial production, the reasons behind the introduction of the disastrous Great Leap Forward, and the measures taken to recoup losses. It discusses the disruptive effects of the Cultural Revolution, followed by economic stasis, and Deng Xiaoping’s efforts to put the PRC on the path to economic prosperity, but at the cost of creating new problems such as widening income gaps, massive corruption, and worsening pollution. It introduces the ambitious one-belt-one-road rule to make China the fulcrum of an international trading network, mentioning factors that could prevent the plan from reaching its goal. It also discusses the current economic slowdown, and efforts by the central government to soften its effects, as well as cope with deteriorating local government finances.