Liberation led to China’s economic miracle
Jomo Kwame Sundaram and Vladimir Popov | 22 Nov 2019 00:30

Any balanced assessment of the so-called Chinese economic miracle will recognise that it was extremely successful, not only during the reform period from 1979, but also since Liberation in 1949 despite the setbacks of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution.

The Chinese economy grew at about 5% on average during 1949 - 1979 and at almost 10% in 1979 - 2019. Five percent growth was impressive, higher than in most countries of the world at that time, but 10% growth over the last four decades is quite unprecedented.

Miracle of economic liberalisation?

The conventional explanation of this miracle is liberalisation, or more accurately, the marketisation reforms started in 1979 by Deng Xiaoping. But in other regions of the world, economic liberalisation has had rather different outcomes.

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