Sample Economics Paper on Economic Growth and Effects on China in Recent History

The following report shall aim to focus on the subject of China and its economic development from ancient times that is, after A.D. 1368 to current times. The report will analyze the following aspects tied to the growth of China, these include, the nature of rule during the progress of history to present times, the indicators of economic growth in the country, and the impact of the growth of the economy on its people and their culture. Therefore it can be asserted that the growth of the economy of China can be attributed to the rule of the various regimes throughout the progression of the country’s history and this growth had multiple effects on the country’s culture and society.

The State of affairs in China in A.D. 1368

The ruling dynasty in China at this juncture in history was the Yuan Dynasty which lasted between 1279 to 138. The emperor at this time was called Kublai Khan. He was responsible for uniting the country by ending the national song empire in A.D 1297[1]. A major aspect that is associated with this time in the history of China was the decline of Mongol power in China. During this time there was widespread chaos and unrest in China. The unrest took the form of rebellions against the Mongol regime at this time. The reasons that can be attributed to this are mainly down to economic factors. This can be linked to the insurgents’ attacks in the countryside which was the breadbasket of the empire. The consequences of poverty in multiple regions dire. The farmers and tenants during these times had to shoulder the burden of high taxation and hard labor during these times.

Therefore this time in the history of China was marked by rebellions and insurgencies. These rebellions could be attributed to the fall of the Mongol power during this juncture in history. The state of the economy could be noted to have taken a downturn at this time as a result of the ongoing rebellions. Therefore it can be deduced that a major aspect that can be attributed to the decline of the economy of China as observed during this time was the weakening of the strength and control of the ruling regime. Therefore it can be posited that the strength of the Chinese economy can be attributed to the stability of its leadership and its control over the affairs of the country. The effects of these two factors on the social aspects of the empire were that it led to widespread unrest in society and an increase in the levels of poverty in society.

The State of affairs in China in A.D. 1700

            This time was marked by the rule of the Ming and Qing dynasty which were between 1368 to 1644 and 1644 to 1912 respectively[2]. The strength of the ruling dynasty was at its strongest which was marked by its naval strength, its political might, and superior social order during this late imperial time frame in the progression of the history of the empire. This was the time of the final two dynasties in the country. It can be noted that from the Tang dynasty to the present times they created a strong regime that was centralized and operational civil service. This replaces the aristocracy with regional points of power. At this time the model of governance in China was regarded to be one to be emulated by governments in Europe due to the impeccable practice it exhibited and the process of civil service examination frameworks.

The Qing dynasty was at the peak of its strength and was under the rule of three robust emperors were Kangxi who ruled from 1662 to 1722, Yongzheng who ruled from 1723 to 1735, and Qianlong who was in charge from 1736 to 1795[3]. They were responsible for the expansion of the borders of China to the furthest reaches since the Han Empire. This time was marked with vast developments in the country that aimed to connect the country’s geographical sites, the systems of rivers and canals which aided in encouraging the trade within the country. During this time the welfare of the people in the country was noted to improve significantly.

The following deductions can be made based on the analysis of the state of affairs in China during the A.D. 1700. As a result of the growth and strong leadership that was experienced during these times through the Ming and the Qing dynasties. There were noted key facets in the economy of the country. These included significant growth and development with the seizure of greater territories than during the previous time of the Han Empire. As a testament of the effect of good leadership on the economy of the country, there was noted the construction of connecting networks throughout the country, that aimed to establish greater trade activities throughout the country and ultimately led to the improvement in the welfare of the country and attracted global attention due to the successes it exhibited.

The State of Affairs in China in A.D 1912 to 1949

This era in the history of China was termed the Republican era; it occurred between 1912 to 1949. In 1912 Sun Yat-sen was inaugurated as the first president of China. In the same year, China began to use the Gregorian calendar. The time between 1914 to 1918 was marked by a decrease in European influence in East Asia. China joined World War 1 and declared war against Germany. During this time there was a significant rise in Japanese influence in China. During this time a ten-year war ensued between the Kuomintang nationalist and the communist party led by Mao Zedong. In 1937 China was invaded by Japan and the gained control of several vital cities which included Beijing. The Second World War ensued, and Japan was defeated, As a result of this, the Civil war between the nationalists and the communist continued.

The deductions that can be made from this time frame in the history of China were that the strength of the regime in the country was on the decline. At this time the country took part in the First World War, in a conflict between the nationalist and the communists, the Second World War ensued, and Japan invaded China. It can be concluded that due to the widespread turmoil and social unrest that went on in the country during these times the economy of the country declined in strength. This decline in strength could be attributed to the issues in governance and the control that the government had on the country. A different aspect can be noted to be the change of the country to a republic and the institution of Western systems in the country. It could be argued that as a result of this change the country did not get a chance to employ the new system of governance and as a result the country’s economy struggled. Therefore a key factor associated with the strengthening or weakening of the strength of the Chinese economy can be attributed to the nature and strength of the regime in power in the country during the time of these alterations.

State of affairs in China in A.D. 1949 to date

This time was marked by communists winning the war against the nationalists, and as a result, the People’s Republic of China was created by Mao Zedong. In the same year, the nationalists fled to Taiwan put in place their government. There were times of volatility noted in the progression of Chinese history, with occasions of the “Great Leap Forward” and the Cultural Revolution which led to the death of millions of people in the country. In 2010, China became the second-largest economy in the world behind the United States[4].

The deductions that can be made associated with this time include that there were some steps aimed at improving the economy of the republic which was met with negative outcomes. The reasons behind this can be attributed to the diminished efficiency of the system of governance in place at this time. However, during the progression of the century and at the turn of the millennia systems of governance increased inefficiency the outcomes yielded improvements in the strength of the economy and the welfare of its populace.

Main points and Deductions

The deductions can be made that throughout the progression of the history of China and in multiple states in Asia the strength of the economy can be attributed to the stability and effectiveness of governance in the country. China has been noted to have a large spending power compared to most states in the region. The large spending power can be attributed to the fact that the percentage of the wealthy is growing to a great extent in the Asian countries with China, for instance, recording one million millionaires in 2006 and this number has tripled since 2006. The large populations in Asian countries such as China are attributed as a major factor behind the strengthening of the economies of the country. Therefore it can be concluded that the large populations have a major effect in the provision of a large workforce and the massive size of the workforce resulting in the downsizing of the wages attributed to this workforce. The number of millionaires per capita in the Asian region provides the driving force on the high purchasing power of the Asian countries.

As a testament to the effect of good leadership in China and the resultant economic growth of the country. The US is finding it more difficult to convince its trade partners to follow its directive. With the establishment of the European Monetary Union, the Eurozone member states are better protected from US dollar shocks and US bullying in macroeconomic negotiations. China for instance with foreign reserves of $2.85 trillion is also capable of resisting US pressure to revalue the renminbi[5]. China does not want the repeat the mistakes of Japan. Instead of bowing to US pressure, it has maintained the peg and increased its efforts of blaming the US

The Europeans and the Chinese have gained greater monetary autonomy from the US. If we consider Cohen’s conceptualization of macro foundations of monetary power. Cohen argues that on a more general level the holders of international monetary power need to develop autonomy and influence. Whereby autonomy refers to the agent being independent in its macroeconomic policies whereas influence refers to the capacity of making others to change their macroeconomic policies5. Cohen can mention that autonomy precedes influence. An agent can have autonomy but not influence.

The Eurozone member states have received greater protection against US influence in macroeconomic diplomatic negotiations.  China has acquired greater protection and therefore higher autonomy. It has enough reserves to withstand any speculative attack coming from financial institutions operating out of Wall Street5. The foreign reserves function thus as a financial deterrence mechanism that allows China to decide when and what pace to start its adjustment from an export-led to a domestic consumption-led growth model. The US is trying through the ‘currency war’ mechanism to devalue the dollar and appreciate the RMB, but China is eager and capable to resist.

Differences between economies in China and different regions in the world

There have been noted differences in the cost of certain commodities and luxury items in Asian states like China and different regions throughout the world. Therefore the main factors that cause these differences in prices are potentially the unfavorable tax margins, and the additional delivery charges are the primary cause of the difference in luxury items prices in Asia in comparison to the similar goods in North America and Europe[6]. The several taxes imposed on the goods have the net effect of the considerable increase in prices of luxury goods.  Another factor causing this appreciation is the absence of proper channels that facilitate the supply of these goods, and the lack of competitors creates a form of price monopoly that results in the increment in these prices. Therefore the importance of governance in yielding the desired outcomes in the various economies throughout the world is seen by the effect that the institution of taxes on key commodities can have on the strength of the economies of the World.

Alternatively, a different argument could be presented that could aid to explain the differences in the strength of economies in various regions of the world. The population demographics in the Asian countries are one of the key agents causing the differences in the total cost of labour6. A larger percentage of the population in Asian countries languishes in poverty. The same population is highly skilled due to several factors in the manufacturing industry. This set of factors creates a large workforce with and perhaps due to the great size of this workforce the resultant downsizing in the cost of labor occurs. Therefore the effect of the differences in states of the economies could be attributed to alternative aspects of the economy not essentially tied to the system of government but instead to different attributes of the demographics of the various states.

Social issues in China and recommendations

Filmmakers and activists in China employ various methods to depict social issues affecting the society they serve. Several problems emerge continually in China, and they elicit adverse reactions on the populace in general. The first social issue in China is that of censorship in films and social media[7]. This social issue has undermined the freedom of expression by the Chinese people and has led to the emergence of activism to counter this trend. The first way that this criticism is carried out is through the application of critiquing techniques such as the formalist approach which aims to identify the facts presented in the film and since they want to understand how these facts come into play in society. Examples of films that have been censored in China include for example Django Unchained and when night falls. For instance in the movie when the night falls, the filmmakers express the theme of government oppression possibly through film portrayals and its effects on the citizens in the country. The filmmakers can express the ills that can emerge in society if oppression is left unchallenged. In the instance of the film, a developing adult who responds upon going through mistreatment from police entered went into a police station killed six officers in response to this. This film portrays an activist attempt to depict how social issues like censorship if left unchallenged could result in social unrest that would undermine the stability of the country.

The second social issue that is prevalent in China is the high population density and the legislation that has been established to counter this issue. This issue has led to the government instituting a one-child policy to stem the rapid population growth[8]. The result of this has been the occurrence of abortions of female babies which has led to a spike in the population of males in the country. Filmmakers and activists have created multiple presentations to depict this issue and have utilized several strategies in their critique of these works which include historical criticism. An example of a film showing this issue is the presentation called overpopulation – the human explosion explained. This form of criticism shows how the problem of overpopulation has emerged through the progression of history. It aims to analyze the historical ramifications of the social problem of overpopulation and the various forms of activism intended to counter its effects. The recommendations that can be made include the leadership to employ less draconian means in ruling its citizens and to be more open to criticism from authoritative sources of the society.

In conclusion, the following report shall aim to focus on the subject of China and its economic development from ancient times that is, after A.D. 1368 to current times. The report will evaluate the following facets tied to the economic growth of China, these include, the nature of the regime in power during the progress of history to present times, the pointers of economic growth in the country, and the impact of the growth of the economy on its people and their culture. The report presents the facts of the progress of the economy of China by outlining the facts and the deductions behind the regimes, economy, and wellbeing of the ruling powers during these times in history.

 

 

Bibliography

Cohen, Paul A. Discovering history in China: American historical writing on the recent Chinese past. Columbia University Press, 2010.

Eberhard, Wolfram. A history of China. Routledge, 2013.

King, Gary, Jennifer Pan, and Margaret E. Roberts. “How censorship in China allows government criticism but silences collective expression.” American Political Science Review107, no. 2 (2013): 326-343.

Lardy, Nicholas R. Integrating China into the global economy. Brookings Institution Press, 2004.

Moise, Edwin E. Modern China. Routledge, 2013.

Roberts, John AG. A history of China. Macmillan International Higher Education, 2011.

Shambaugh, David L. China goes global: The partial power. Vol. 111. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.

Su, Biwei, Almas Heshmati, Yong Geng, and Xiaoman Yu. “A review of the circular economy in China: moving from rhetoric to implementation.” Journal of Cleaner Production 42 (2013): 215-227.

[1] Cohen, Paul A. Discovering history in China: American historical writing on the recent Chinese past. Columbia University Press, 2010.

 

[2] Eberhard, Wolfram. A history of China. Routledge, 2013.

 

[3] Roberts, John AG. A history of China. Macmillan International Higher Education, 2011.

 

[4] Moise, Edwin E. Modern China. Routledge, 2013.

 

[5] Lardy, Nicholas R. Integrating China into the global economy. Brookings Institution Press, 2004.

 

[6] Su, Biwei, Almas Heshmati, Yong Geng, and Xiaoman Yu. “A review of the circular economy in China: moving from rhetoric to implementation.” Journal of Cleaner Production 42 (2013): 215-227.

 

[7] King, Gary, Jennifer Pan, and Margaret E. Roberts. “How censorship in China allows government criticism but silences collective expression.” American Political Science Review107, no. 2 (2013): 326-343.

 

[8] Shambaugh, David L. China goes global: The partial power. Vol. 111. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.