China injects confidence into world economy: commentary
By Chen Ling-In a world beset by an economic downturn, China has remained an anchor of stability that continues to inject confidence into the global economy.
The resilience and sound fundamentals of the Chinese economy have won praise from foreign scholars, think tanks and media after China recently released its second quarter economic figures.
For eight straight quarters, the country managed to keep its economic growth between 6.7 and 6.9 percent and its industrial growth reached its best level after 2015. As the economy stabilizes and grows, China’s employment performance continues to improve.
Nobel economics laureate Ronald Coase pointed out that economists should go back from what he termed “blackboard economics” to the real world, which means they should not lose sight of reality when drawing graphs on the blackboard.
People may have a deeper understanding about the economist’s concerns when they know that what’s happening in China is turning what’s on paper into reality. New technologies, emerging industries and innovative products, such as unmanned shops, wallpaper TVs and smart homes, are making life more convenient, delighting people with new experiences and enhancing their way of life.
These changes explain why foreigners in China cannot help but say that “Once you leave China you’ll find yourself falling behind.” The improvement in people’s lives shows China’s economy continues to rise.
A few years ago, before China’s “Internet Plus” strategy became the buzzword, many Western scholars doubted whether an industrial upgrade could inject new impetus into the country’s economy. Now, they may be more convinced that the idea has not only resuscitated old engines but fostered new drivers for economic growth.
“China, once known for its cheap labor, has contributed to the world in terms of innovation,” The Wall Street Journal said in a report. Innovation is now emerging as a new engine as China marches toward its second-phase miracle.
From this perspective, China’s economic slowdown in the past could be described as a proactive adjustment under the economic transformation rather than a lack of impetus.
What also impresses the world are China’s efforts to break “hard constraints,” such as eliminating backward production capacity, basing measures on local circumstances and taking targeted policies to cut excessive urban real estate inventory as well as focusing more on preventing and defusing financial risks.
The past few years also saw China’s endeavor to push forward supply-side structural reform and absorb painful self-adjustments in a bid to solve the underlying problems in economic development. The reform managed to prevent both “black swans” and “grey rhinos.”
In addition to eradicating the sources of risks, China also developed a set of development concepts that has inspired the world. In the past, many developing countries deemed Western countries as their role models, and were keen on learning from the West. But both developing and the developed world have since been learning from the experience of the East.
“Why is the Chinese economy so strong?” is a question that has been asked countless times. As British economist Martin Wolf pointed out, some people wrongly forecast the performance of China’s economy because they’ve been used to finding answers for this “China riddle” using the Western way of thinking.
Misunderstandings about the Chinese economy result from prejudice and insufficient knowledge about the country. Some foreign scholars have recommended adopting the Chinese way of solving issues as a better way of observing China.
(Source: People’s Daily