China Policy Institute: Analysis


Xi Jinping

How Xi Jinping’s Anti-Corruption Campaign Reduces Local Discretion and Policy Innovation

Written by Jessica Teets.

Since Xi Jinping launched his anti-corruption campaign, the investigation and punishment of local officials has been viewed as a successful way to restore “legitimacy” to the Chinese Communist Party and local state governments. However, after several years of this campaign, many policymakers and scholars have pointed out the counter-intuitive ways in which this reduction in local official discretion has negatively impacted both the economy and governance. For example, a former central bank official, David Li, argues that the anti-corruption campaign has exacerbated economic slowdown by closing off informal mechanisms for using interpersonal ties to allocate resources and forge contracts. Additionally, Xuelian Chen and Christian Göbel contend that the campaign has altered local incentive structures encouraging innovation thereby reducing local innovation, often described as the source of the adaptability of the CCP to changing economic, social and political conditions. Continue reading “How Xi Jinping’s Anti-Corruption Campaign Reduces Local Discretion and Policy Innovation”

Has Xi Jinping changed China?

Written by Angela Stanzel.

Almost as soon as Xi Jinping assumed office as president in March 2013, a few months after becoming leader of the Communist Party, it became apparent that he planned major changes for China. In particular, Xi called for carrying out further market economic reforms, improving China’s legal institutions, promoting the “rule of law”, and raising social standards, which he pledged during the Third Plenum of the 18th Central Committee in November 2013. Xi also set out a vision for China: the “Chinese dream” of “resurrecting” Chinese power and “rejuvenating the Chinese nation”. Continue reading “Has Xi Jinping changed China?”

How sustainable is China’s social security system?

Written by Matthias Stepan.

Social policy is one of the policy fields that remain firmly in the hands of the State Council. In the nearly four years of the Xi-Li Administration, China has made headway in this policy field: social policy programs, such as health insurance and old age pensions have reached nearly universal coverage; levels of social transfers and government subsidies have risen continuously. However, the most important achievement of the administration is the consolidation of the large number of programs that served different groups defined by their household registration (户口hukou) or occupation. In 2014 almost all localities merged the urban resident pension social insurance program and the new type rural pension social insurance program under the label of Urban and Rural Residents’ Basic Pension Insurance. At about the same time, employees in public service units (事业单位shiye danwei), e.g. university staff, have been stripped of privileges. They no longer enjoy higher levels of benefits than regular enterprise employees without paying contributions. Instead they are now insured under the same social insurance programs. Continue reading “How sustainable is China’s social security system?”

Xi Jinping: Where Does the Power Come From?

Written by Kerry Brown.

The consensus on the history of the People’s Republic of China after its establishment in 1949 is that the last seven decades divides into two phases. The first until 1978, broadly covering the Maoist era, saw mass campaigns, Utopian visions guiding social development, and an ideology based on class struggle. After 1978, in the reform and opening up era, the focus shifted dramatically to making economic development and material improvements through marketization, privatization, and opening to the outside world. Continue reading “Xi Jinping: Where Does the Power Come From?”

OBOR: Re-orient Opening to galvanize Reform

Written by Yong Deng.

Soon after inauguration as the top Chinese leadership, President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang rolled out the Silk Road program or “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR). The initiative is designed to open up massive economic zones between East Asia and Europe through Chinese financed infrastructure and transportation projects as well as China-centric trade and financial ties. OBOR starts in China and spans westward through the Euro-Asian landmass to build an “economic belt” with Europe. To the east, the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road would start from the west Pacific and detoured through south Pacific to reach Europe through sea routes and coastal regions along the way. OBOR also seeks to enhance China’s soft power through civilizational dialogues and people-to-people contact. Continue reading “OBOR: Re-orient Opening to galvanize Reform”

OBOR and the Marshall Plan.

Written by Simon Shen.

The concept of “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) continues to be at the center of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s travels abroad, whether to the 2015 G20 and APEC conferences or to the Middle East. Despite the enthusiasm demonstrated by China for this grand strategy, however, the strategic goals of OBOR are interpreted diversely by individuals. Recently, international relations scholars have compared OBOR with the U.S.-led Marshall Plan in the post-World War II era, but scholars from China argue that the OBOR and Marshall Plan are not comparable. Continue reading “OBOR and the Marshall Plan.”

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