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DOSSIER : QUESTIONS SUR LE COMMERCE EXTERIEUR CHINOIS: LES TROIS "BONDS" (p. 54–57)
Bulletin de Sinologie
No. 12 (DÉCEMBRE 1985), pp. 4-5
Published by: French Centre for Research on Contemporary China
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/24072358
Page Count: 2
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Chinese economic history has known three "leaps" since 1949. In 1958 Mao Zedong's "great leap forward" tending to bypass Great-Britain and catch up with America resulted in disaster throwing the economy out of balance until 1962. In 1977, Hua Guofeng's "leap of westernization" was too ambitious and had to be drastically reduced as early as 1978. Deng Xiaoping came forth with his "leap of reforms" in 1984, but his "opening to the outside world, inland vitality" got out of control. The three "leaps" have in common the political struggle - one man imposes his views devoid of "scientific" economical bases which are, when put into practice, choked by too much bureaucracy - the cadres, at any level, are never prepared to change their ways and block any reform in either sense. As to the differences: The first "leap" was an internal party affair. Mao wanted to take the power back. Afterwards he never admitted his errors. The second "leap" ended with Hua Guofeng's fall. Deng Xiaoping was quick to admit his errors, which enabled him to remain in saddle and to continue his policy. This third "leap" has strenghtened relations with the capitalist world. The consequences of the economical side-slips will however be long to straighten out.
Bulletin de Sinologie © 1985 French Centre for Research on Contemporary China