SEZ Management and Performance, 1979–1982
China’s SEZ planners understand that effective management and successful performance are essential to the continuing political viability of zone policy. Toward these ends, they have called upon the experience of EPZs in other countries as well as proposals for national economic reform in China. Decentralization involves a tripartite balance of power. Central authorities in Beijing, provincial leaders in Guangzhou and Fuzhou, and local administrators within the SEZs all have a part in the implementation of zone policy. Distribution of decisionmaking power across these three levels of governance, which encourages foreign investment but allows for a degree of national control, is the primary task of SEZ management. Insofar as performance data for Shenzhen are most readily obtained and relatively reliable, the flagship of the SEZs must be the focus of any analysis of the economic outcomes of zone policy. Where relevant information from the three other cases is available, it can be used to supplement the conclusions drawn from Shenzhen’s experience.