Industry. – Since 1949, Chinese economic policy has favored the secondary sector in terms of investments, with the consequence that the value of industrial production grew between 1949 and 1978 by 38.3% (with a peak of 90.6% in the heavy industry), while agriculture only by 2.4%. But beyond the valid successes achieved in the industrial exploitation of immense mineral resources (coal, iron, oil, vanadium, nickel, tungsten, etc.), the Chinese industrial system appears unable to withstand the country’s ambitious large-scale projects. Industrial employment is at the level of underdeveloped countries (15%), productivity is modest, products are on average of poor quality and prices are high due to plant location errors, primitive technologies and poor managerial skills of executives. The new leadership is therefore trying to overcome these limits by introducing radical innovations in the industry, certainly suffocated by too much bureaucracy and development plans not always suited to local realities, on the model of the system of responsibility that has given good results in agriculture.
Businesses have been endowed with greater managerial autonomy, profits are no longer forfeited by the state, but are used to pay wages directly and to make investments. Since everyone is interested in improving their wages by taking advantage of the various incentives that companies can provide, individual initiative and the search for the means to produce better and at lower cost are stimulated. The state only imposes variously modulated taxes on production. Within companies it is possible to stipulate production contracts both with groups of employees and with individuals. The impact of these measures is different on the various types of companies that make up the Chinese production system. The greatest resistance occurred in the sector of state industries, which grew to
According to aparentingblog, the opening towards the West, its managerial tradition and its technology, constitute another great challenge on which the possibility of China to emerge from underdevelopment is confronted. In this direction, the government established four SEZs (Special Economic Zones) in 1980. Within them, through a “development company”, relations with foreign entrepreneurs are facilitated. These are attracted with substantial facilities, the granting of land for various initiatives, the availability and direct management of the local labor force. The goal is to create mixed enterprises not only in the industrial sector, but also in the agricultural sector, in services, in transport, in construction, in tourism. The location of the SEZs (three insist on as many ports, Xiamen, Shantou and Zhuhai in Guangdong; one, Shenzen, borders on the territory of Hong Kong) indicates that in the next decades the industrial policy of China will tend to promote those areas that show favorable conditions for trade and better equipped with infrastructures, especially communications. Also in this there is a detachment from Maoist politics which had tried to decentralize the industry in places with no tradition in the sector, far from the coasts. In this sense, the new course does not seem to want to question the supremacy of the central-northern coastal districts. it will tend to promote those areas that show favorable conditions for trade and better equipped with infrastructures, especially communications. Also in this there is a detachment from Maoist politics which had tried to decentralize the industry in places with no tradition in the sector, far from the coasts. In this sense, the new course does not seem to want to question the supremacy of the central-northern coastal districts.
The regions of Liaoning and Hebei with Beijing and Tianjin in 1982 had 19% of the industrial population and 20% of the gross product. The idea of not limiting its role as a large commercial and production center also seems to prevail against Shanghai, in favor of other locations with uncertain outcomes. With 1.2% of the Chinese population, in 1982 the municipality of Shanghai accounted for 5% of all industrial employment and 12% of all production, boasting the highest productivity per employee (20,875 yuan against national average of 9064).
The 8 southern provinces – Zhejiang, Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Yunnan, Guizhou, Hunan, Jiangxi – with 30.7% of the Chinese population at the date of the 1982 census had 22.8% of industrial workers and 19.7 % of the value produced. The development of the secondary sector is also entrusted to the revision of the price system and market mechanisms, in a dimension of relative competition.
Communications and commerce. – The improvement of the communication routes has been remarkable. The railway lines in 1985 extended for 52,000 km, of which 4200 were electrified; roads for 940,000, inland waterways for 109,000. Air transport has undergone a rapid increase with 8,236,000 passes in 1984.
The new foreign policy has favored international trade, with a strong increase in imports and a balance of payments in the red confirming the increase in consumption, especially in the advanced technology sector.