Chinese Economics Thread


taxiya

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good piece by Professor Lu Ming on China's foolish urban population control measures. If China wants a successful dual-circulation strategy, its going to need Shanghai, Beijing, and the PRD to rapidly grow demographically. Keeping the country divided in small cities and towns is such a dumb move, I hope the Politburo drops it and embraces megacities.
Are you living in any of these mega cities? Have you visited any similar mega cities in India and Brasil? Do so before you make such comment.

Who said concetrating the whole country in very few mega cities is the ONLY way to solve your perceived issues? Why not grow those thousands small cities to thousands big cities? Wouldn't that make much more spaces for people than the 3 cities?

Do some simple math before you call someone "dumb" or "stupid".

P.S. Just because this Lu Ming person is a "professor" in a Chinese University does not mean he know what he is talking about China. I have seen many stupid "professor" or "expert" from China speaking with utmost absurdity. Such as "distributing Chinese foreign reserves to everybody" by "economists". I have wondered whether they have got paid by somebody else other than the university.
 

cbl21

Junior Member
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Are you living in any of these mega cities? Have you visited any similar mega cities in India and Brasil? Do so before you make such comment.

Who said concetrating the whole country in very few mega cities is the ONLY way to solve your perceived issues? Why not grow those thousands small cities to thousands big cities? Wouldn't that make much more spaces for people than the 3 cities?

Do some simple math before you call someone "dumb" or "stupid".

P.S. Just because this Lu Ming person is a "professor" in a Chinese University does not mean he know what he is talking about China. I have seen many stupid "professor" or "expert" from China speaking with utmost absurdity. Such as "distributing Chinese foreign reserves to everybody" by "economists". I have wondered whether they have got paid by somebody else other than the university.
Yes, I have. There's no reason why China can't replicate Tokyo-style urban planning (where I used to live, mind you, not hellish at all). Tokyo has 40 million people, yet it is still quite livable (due to extensive public transit, good urban planning, and a great number of parks). Same thing with Seoul, with 25 million people (more than most other Chinese big cities). There's just no good reason to try to keep Shanghai, for instance, constrained.

Also, efficiency has to deal with economies of scale. By building the biggest cities (PRD, Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Chongqing) and concentrating talent, you inevitably build far more powerful and economically dynamic urban areas. This is why in Japan and South Korea, big cities like Tokyo and Seoul are so big. Bigger cities naturally have more opportunities, networks, and wealth, and trying to prevent poorer people to move there and force them to stay stuck in poorer small towns and cities, no matter how hard you try to develop them, simply won't work. In the long run, people still gravitate to bigger cities, which are bigger centers of gravity for economic activity and growth. Keeping these factors divided and talent broken up in small concentrations is generally inefficient and is one of the things that IMO holds China back. No one said there should be slums allowed to proliferate in Shanghai; at the same time, Shanghai doesn't need a harsh flat population cap. There's plenty of room and space and potential in Shanghai-Suzhou, if you read the article.

Also, mind you, this professor has the support and backing of Xi Jinping, so are you against Xi's strategy and planning? Do you think Xi's an idiot? Before you say the professor, who teaches at one of the most prestigious, advanced universities in the country, "doesn't know what he is talking about", and by extension, President Xi himself, perhaps you should reconsider your own points. Even if "he doesn't know what he is talking about", neither do you necessarily.
 

KenC

New Member
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Are you living in any of these mega cities? Have you visited any similar mega cities in India and Brasil? Do so before you make such comment.

Who said concetrating the whole country in very few mega cities is the ONLY way to solve your perceived issues? Why not grow those thousands small cities to thousands big cities? Wouldn't that make much more spaces for people than the 3 cities?

Do some simple math before you call someone "dumb" or "stupid".

P.S. Just because this Lu Ming person is a "professor" in a Chinese University does not mean he know what he is talking about China. I have seen many stupid "professor" or "expert" from China speaking with utmost absurdity. Such as "distributing Chinese foreign reserves to everybody" by "economists". I have wondered whether they have got paid by somebody else other than the university.
I believe the quoted article is somewhat sensationalist. Lu Ming came into prominent as he was on of the scholars who were invited top leadership meeting on the dual circulation economy. Basically he argues that it is more efficient and makes more sense to expand current economic centers rather than investing more on the smaller cities to cater for population growths. Hence the call for more land to be released in these cities to develop into giant megalopolis.
 

localizer

Captain
Registered Member
Yes, I have. There's no reason why China can't replicate Tokyo-style urban planning (where I used to live, mind you, not hellish at all). Tokyo has 40 million people, yet it is still quite livable (due to extensive public transit, good urban planning, and a great number of parks). Same thing with Seoul, with 25 million people (more than most other Chinese big cities). There's just no good reason to try to keep Shanghai, for instance, constrained.

Also, efficiency has to deal with economies of scale. By building the biggest cities (PRD, Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Chongqing) and concentrating talent, you inevitably build far more powerful and economically dynamic urban areas. This is why in Japan and South Korea, big cities like Tokyo and Seoul are so big. Bigger cities naturally have more opportunities, networks, and wealth, and trying to prevent poorer people to move there and force them to stay stuck in poorer small towns and cities, no matter how hard you try to develop them, simply won't work. In the long run, people still gravitate to bigger cities, which are bigger centers of gravity for economic activity and growth. Keeping these factors divided and talent broken up in small concentrations is generally inefficient and is one of the things that IMO holds China back. No one said there should be slums allowed to proliferate in Shanghai; at the same time, Shanghai doesn't need a harsh flat population cap. There's plenty of room and space and potential in Shanghai-Suzhou, if you read the article.

Also, mind you, this professor has the support and backing of Xi Jinping, so are you against Xi's strategy and planning? Do you think Xi's an idiot? Before you say the professor, who teaches at one of the most prestigious, advanced universities in the country, "doesn't know what he is talking about", and by extension, President Xi himself, perhaps you should reconsider your own points. Even if "he doesn't know what he is talking about", neither do you necessarily.

I back the big city plan.

The Chinese leadership initially planned for 50 20million+ population cities.

Each would give the GDP of a New York someday :).


But Hukou and housing prices have to be resolved perhaps.

@shanlung Should China follow Singapore housing development?
 

KenC

New Member
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Definitely
Problem is you can't just copy Singapore housing development model. If it could be done, China would have done it years ago.
Singapore is just a city state with a small where the large portion of permanent population or citizens can enjoy subsidized housing. If do that , say in Shenzhen, there will be 1 billion application for subsidized housing !
 

cbl21

Junior Member
Registered Member
Problem is you can't just copy Singapore housing development model. If it could be done, China would have done it years ago.
Singapore is just a city state with a small where the large portion of permanent population or citizens can enjoy subsidized housing. If do that , say in Shenzhen, there will be 1 billion application for subsidized housing !
Never said to concentrate 1 billion people in Shenzhen, did I? Right now they are planning 1 million new public housing units in Shenzhen, which I agree with. Perhaps they might expand that goal to 3-5 million units. Same with other cities. Perhaps the Shanghai-Suzhou Metropolis can grow by another 50%-60% in the next 30 years? That would be reasonable. I agree with population caps at a certain point, but China's biggest cities don't need that right now. What they need is growth, expansion. That way, China can exploit the full potential of agglomeration benefits, which lead to far higher growth, dynamism, and productivity. Think about it this way; if Shanghai's proportion of China's population was on par with New York City's metro population proportion to the whole USA, the Shanghai-Suzhou urban area should have 70 million people! There is certainly room for growth, and its not like China can't afford infrastructure either. If China wants a successful dual circulation economy with powerful consumers, it needs to embrace more centralized urbanization into megacities, and the agglomeration benefits that come with them. Might I remind you of the success of Seoul and Tokyo?
 

Dolcevita

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good piece by Professor Lu Ming on China's foolish urban population control measures. If China wants a successful dual-circulation strategy, its going to need Shanghai, Beijing, and the PRD to rapidly grow demographically. Keeping the country divided in small cities and towns is such a dumb move, I hope the Politburo drops it and embraces megacities.
Never said to concentrate 1 billion people in Shenzhen, did I? Right now they are planning 1 million new public housing units in Shenzhen, which I agree with. Perhaps they might expand that goal to 3-5 million units. Same with other cities. Perhaps the Shanghai-Suzhou Metropolis can grow by another 50%-60% in the next 30 years? That would be reasonable. I agree with population caps at a certain point, but China's biggest cities don't need that right now. What they need is growth, expansion. That way, China can exploit the full potential of agglomeration benefits, which lead to far higher growth, dynamism, and productivity. Think about it this way; if Shanghai's proportion of China's population was on par with New York City's metro population proportion to the whole USA, the Shanghai-Suzhou urban area should have 70 million people! There is certainly room for growth, and its not like China can't afford infrastructure either. If China wants a successful dual circulation economy with powerful consumers, it needs to embrace more centralized urbanization into megacities, and the agglomeration benefits that come with them. Might I remind you of the success of Seoul and Tokyo?
I do not agree that the unrestricted population growth to megacities. At this stage of China development where many communities still live in inaccessible rural areas, a better policy is to create more sustainable cities and towns throughout China until such time when they become mature and sustainable and extreme poverty is eliminated. Government policy cannot be based on economic factor alone. It needs to consider the overall well-being of all Chinese people whereever they are. Resources needs to be allocated to raise the overall quality of life of all Chinese, which includes all social factor, rural cultural factor, ecological factor, etc.

You brought out the example of Tokyo and Seoul arguing that this are example of highly successful urbanization. Yet, you fail to see that this has caused hardship to the rest of the rural communities. depopulation and hallowing-out of the rural communities has caused hardship in those communities. So much so that they are importing migrant workers and spouse to sustain their livelihood which result in additional social burden on those communities. Tax revenues are heavily concentrated in those megacities which leads to a vicious cycle where young adults increasingly migrate to cities.

Megacities are so 20th century today. In a digital age and perhaps even in post-covid era, Economic efficiency can still be achieved without the pitfall of excessive urbanization. It is better overall to build many more self-sustaining cities that are linked together via the digital network, transportation network.
 

AndrewS

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good piece by Professor Lu Ming on China's foolish urban population control measures. If China wants a successful dual-circulation strategy, its going to need Shanghai, Beijing, and the PRD to rapidly grow demographically. Keeping the country divided in small cities and towns is such a dumb move, I hope the Politburo drops it and embraces megacities.
McKinsey report on Chinese urbanisation.

Basically Supercities or Hub-and-Spoke cities work out best.

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free_6ix9ine

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Here is a good piece on dual circulation by CSIS. Keep in mind they are a DC think tank. But I think their work on analyzing dual circulation is pretty fair:

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My general feeling is that the supply side reforms to restructure the economy to produce for domestic consumption as opposed for export, will be easier than boosting domestic demand which requires higher income/productivity increases at an individual level. Its easy to retool factories to produce products for the domestic market, but if the workers in that factory cannot afford the products the factory produces then that's a problem.

If someone who has more knowledge in economics can chime in that would be great. @Gatekeeper ?
 

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