The Soviet Union is currently in the very difficult process of modernizing its society. This includes steps toward a more participatory polity and the development of a civic society; a reform of its economic system that in the more radical of outcomes encompasses a larger role for market forces, a larger private sector, and fuller integration into the global economic and financial systems; and a more cooperative stance on international political and security issues. Since Soviet officials designed for the Twelfth Five-Year Plan to serve as the basis for a transition to more modern economic institutions and performance in the Soviet Union, it makes sense at this point to focus attention on the economic trends that took shape during that period. The most significant aspect of the plan is its sharp shift toward the production of consumer goods. The growth targets for Group B industries in 1989 are a full 6.7 percent higher than the 1988 level.