China and the Middle-Income Trap: Toward a Post Washington, Post Beijing Consensus
16 Pages Posted: 15 May 2013
Date Written: May 14, 2013
Over the last thirty years, China has experienced tremendous growth, with many commentators attributing the rapid development to the “China Model” (CM) or the “Beijing Consensus” (BC). However, in recent years growth has slowed and an ever-increasing number of bears are predicting a financial crisis, economic collapse, and a very hard landing, perhaps even a lost decade a la Japan. All of this has led to heated debate about whether the CM is now exhausted, whether China is caught in “the middle-income trap” (MIT) and whether a new model is needed for next phase of development where China attempts the difficult transition from middle-income country to high-income country status.
This article addresses the following five sets of issues. First, is there a CM or BC? If so, what does it entail, and does it differ from the model followed by other successful countries in East Asia? Second, is there a MIT? Is China stuck in the MIT or perhaps multiple MITs? Third, what adjustments to the economic model are required for China to continue its long march toward becoming a high-income country? Fourth, are political, legal and social reforms also required? If so, will all reforms proceed simultaneously or are reforms likely to be sequenced, with adjustments to the economy preceding reforms in other areas? Fifth, is there now a global convergence on a new model of development for developing countries – a Post-Washington, Post-Beijing Consensus?
Keywords: China Model, Beijing Consensus, law and development, Post Washington Consensus, Post Beijing Post Washington Consensus, East Asian Model, middle-income trap, new development state
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