Leadership to adjust growth model
Updated: 2005-10-10 09:56
It should instead move towards the model adopted by developed countries --
depending more on technological innovations and less on resources and labor for
growth, it said.
Over the years, government coffers and state-run banks have funded many
viable infrastructure projects, but also unworthy ones such as city plazas and
high-tech parks that remain empty.
Corruption and lack of accountability played a big part in the wasteful
spending as local officials are able to pocket kickbacks from developers and
others, and face little reprimand for pushing through unnecessary projects.
Such "blind" investment has led to a waste in resources such as steel and
energy, causing prices to shoot up and raising fears of a depletion of
This has also led to large-scale environmental degradation, with many of
China's rivers and lakes polluted and many Chinese cities blanketed with filthy
The model of growth adopted, which has placed the emphasis on China's coastal
regions, has also created a serious income gap between urban and rural areas,
with a majority of the rural population falling far behind in living standards
as compared to city dwellers.
Unless farmers' incomes rise, it is feared China will not be able to continue
growing at the current rapid pace of more than 9 percent a year.
The next five years is a "golden development period" but also fraught with
challenges, Xinhua said.
Zheng Xinli, deputy director of the Central Policy Research Office,
attributed China's growth to the huge investment and excessive consumption of
Growth must be achieved through scientific progress and improvement in
laborers' quality, Zheng said.
From 1979 to 2004, China's economy grew by a blistering 9.4 per cent annual
average, making it the sixth largest economy in the world. However, China's
consumption of natural resources is alarming: its gross domestic product
accounts for 4 per cent of the world, while its consumption of water accounts
for 15 per cent of the world, steel for 28 per cent and cement for 50 per cent.