A Peek Into Everyday China : Focus on Xiconomics by Lt Gen P R Shankar (R)

I found three interesting articles on Xi Jinping. These articles tell us that Xi Jinping has turned China into a path far different from the one whose hallmarks were reform and growth. As he is on the verge of a third term, it is instructive to understand the trajectory on which he is guiding China. The extracts from these articles give you a glimpse of the future of China under Xi. 

Headline : How China sacrificed economic growth on the altar of Xi Jinping Thought@




Since the days of Deng Xiaoping, economic growth has mattered more than anything for China’s leaders. The 10 per cent annualised growth from 1980 to 2010 was seen as the antidote to the relative stasis of the Mao Zedong era, when the economy grew by only about 6 per cent. But under President Xi Jinping, the pendulum has swung back, with 6.6 per cent average growth from 2013 to 2021, closer to the trajectory under Mao than Deng.


China’s slowdown is far more than an arithmetic event. Three powerful forces are also at work – a structural transformation of the economy, payback for past excesses and a profound shift in the ideological underpinnings of Chinese governance.


By staying the course of hyper growth for too long, China became increasingly afflicted with the “four uns” of former premier Wen Jiabao – an economy that was unstable, unbalanced, uncoordinated and ultimately unsustainable.


Rebalancing was the only way out, especially if it led to greener, consumer-led and services-intensive growth that addressed the twin goals of balance and sustainability. If slower growth was the price, it was well worth paying.


As the revolutionary founder of a new Chinese state, Mao emphasised ideology over development. For Deng and his successors, it was the opposite. De-emphasis of ideology was necessary to boost economic growth through market-based “reform and opening up”.


The new ideological campaigns carried out under the general rubric of Xi Jinping Thought, including a regulatory clampdown on once-dynamic internet platform companies and associated restrictions on online gamingmusicand private tutoring, as well as a zero-Covid policy that has led to economically damaging lockdowns, have all but dashed those hopes.


Xi’s fixation on national rejuvenation, an outgrowth of his “Chinese dream” that has led to a more muscular Chinese foreign policy, in contrast to Deng’s “hide and bide” approach. Not by coincidence, this has fuelled the trade and tech wars with the United States, given rise to China’s “unlimited” partnership with Russia and stoked tensions over Taiwan. All of these point to the unwinding of globalisation, which has benefited China more than any other country.


Xi’s focus on ideology speaks more to the resurrection of Mao’s legacy than continuity with the Deng era. Under Xi, China’s new era is more about the supremacy of the Communist Party, with an associated emphasis on power, control and ideological constraints on the economy.


With the upcoming 20th Party Congress likely to usher in an unprecedented third five-year term for Xi, there is good reason to believe China’s growth sacrifice has only just begun.


Headline : Xi Jinping looks to take China beyond Deng Xiaoping’s ‘get rich’ era with historic third term@




Since taking office in 2013, Xi has expanded China’s economic influence abroad through the Belt and Road Initiative and introduced an inward-looking economic strategy at home. He has shaken up key industries and stared down US threats of decoupling. As president, he has left his mark on the economy like few before him.

China is at a critical stage of development. Over the past decade, the economy has grown steadily and the country is now on the cusp of joining the high-income club.

On the other hand, it faces numerous headwinds: a demographic crisis, slowing growth, debt, deglobalisation, geopolitical tensions with the West and the coronavirus pandemic.

How well China navigates these challenges will largely be down to Xi, who has reshaped the country’s major economic decision-making institutions, most notably the Central Economic and Financial Affairs Commission.

“We must firmly grasp the problems concerning unbalanced and insufficient development, focusing on improving weak links, consolidating foundations and making full use of our advantages,” Xi told senior cadres in the Central Party School in late July. “New ideas and measures are needed to solve them.”


Xi’s first term between 2013-18 was devoted to addressing domestic problems….These included high debt, a dwindling demographic dividend, industrial overcapacity and inequality, with structural adjustments and de-risking campaigns high on the agenda.

His second term was dominated by the trade war with the United States – which plunged relations to their worst point in four decades – and the coronavirus pandemic.

Faced with uncertainty abroad, Xi pivoted inward with the “dual circulation” strategy in 2020, putting emphasis on China’s huge domestic market and home-grown technology to power future growth. Some analysts said it marked a shift from China’s decades-old, export-oriented development model and participation in the US-led international system.

At home, Xi also sought to reduce inequality through the government’s “common prosperity” strategy and vowed to make state-owned enterprises (SOEs) “bigger, better and stronger”. His backing of SOEs, which deviated from long-standing calls for market-oriented reform, fuelled concerns about the place of private businesses in the economy. Those worries were amplified by the government’s regulatory crackdown on Big Tech and private tutoring.

Now, with Xi’s third term in sight, a number of important questions have to be asked about the future of China’s economy. How important will ideology be in development? What will become of Deng’s mantra of reform and opening? And how will Chinese entrepreneurs and foreign investors fare in the years to come?

The country is moving out of the Deng era of “Getting Rich” into the Xi era “Being Strong”, and his approach looks like a mix of wealth redistribution, a focus on self-reliance and supply chain resilience, decarbonisation, stability and quality growth over quantity…“The state is the driving force behind realising all of the above,” he said. “China’s economic policies will become more inward looking.”

Market reform in China has stalled under Xi. According to China Dashboard, a joint project between Asia Society Policy Institute and Rhodium Group that monitors Beijing’s reform, there has been either zero progress or actual policy regression in most of the 10 major baskets of reform outlined in November 2013.


The assets of state-owned industrial enterprises have grown by 2.6 times to 259 trillion yuan (US$38.3 trillion) compared to a decade ago…There was no “serious discussion” of economic reform, but rather a continuation of ineffective SOE policies of the past, such as corporatization, debt-equity swaps and mega mergers.

The core of Xi’s approach is [that] economics is subservient to politics, that economic gains must be sacrificed if they bring political risks


China is still deeply embedded in the global supply chain and a major draw for foreign investment. But refusing to open up the economy further could come with consequences. 


Headline : 7 ‘Xiconomic’ policies that have guided growth over the past decade




“Xiconomics” encapsulates the long-term guiding principles of the world’s second-largest economy, and is central to “Xi Jinping Thought”….Here are seven events that have changed China’s economic landscape over the past 10 years.


Belt and Road Initiative (September 2013)


The Belt and Road Initiative was first used to revive connections along ancient trade routes and tap non-Western markets before turning into an ambitious strategy to expand China’s influence in more than 60 countries in Asia, Europe, Africa and South America…The initiative was predicated on infrastructure connectivity but expanded to include trade and investment, with the establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, Silk Road Fund and the New Development Bank.


Reform Document (November 2013)


The Reform Document, released during the third plenum closed-door summit in November 2013, mentioned for the first time market principles would play a “decisive” role in the economy…the Reform Document blueprint detailed 336 specific tasks to be achieved by 2020….These included establishing negative list for foreign investment, fiscal reform, an initial public offering registration mechanism and financial opening, all of which fuelled enthusiasm that pro-market reforms would continue…Some of the most easily achievable tasks were completed, but many key tasks were eventually shelved.


‘New normal’, supply-side structural reform (2015)


The “new normal” placed an emphasis on quality, rather than the pace of economic expansion, with Beijing focusing on a medium-growth stage…It downplayed GDP and concentrated on addressing problems like rising debt, rampant shadow banking and demographic challenges…the government took steps to reshape the property sector – a pillar of growth in previous decades – by introducing the principle that homes are for living in, not speculation…It introduced macro-control measures ranging from blanket purchase and pricing restrictions, to tightening mortgage requirements and clamping down on illegal financing…Financial regulators set three restrictions – the so-called three red lines – including capping major developers’ debt ratio to 70 per cent in late 2020.


‘Stronger, better and larger’ SOEs (2016)


State-owned enterprises (SOEs) have long been the backbone to China’s socialist market economy. But Xi pledged to make them bigger and stronger. Since 2016, their role has been solidified after Beijing launched a new whole-nation mechanism to counter US trade sanctions and fight the pandemic. “They form the economic and political foundation of China’s socialist system and are a key pillar for the [Communist] Party’s rule. They must be built stronger, better and larger,” Xi said in 2021, adding the state sector’s role “cannot be negated nor weakened”.


Dual Circulation’ (May 2020)


The economic strategy highlighted both internal and external circulation, but marked a shift from China’s decades-old, export-oriented development model, setting a series of new goals for the next 15 years…The plan places greater focus on the domestic market, or internal circulation, and is China’s strategic adaptation to an increasingly unstable and hostile outside world.


‘Common Prosperity’ (2021)


China is pursuing common prosperity, which calls for fairer distribution of wealth, as the main objective in its next stage of development, while stressing the need to maintain an airtight economy to support the goal…Common prosperity marks a further shift from the decades-old pursuit of rapid economic growth, which lifted hundreds of millions of Chinese out of poverty but also expanded inequality…The goal is to reform income distribution so that the middle class accounts for most of China’s wealth.


Zero-Covid strategy (2022)


China was the first major economy to recover from the initial shock of the coronavirus, but the introduction of a zero-Covid strategy early in 2022 to fight the Omicron variant has taken a substantial toll on growth…Strict quarantine and isolation have hit the contact-intensive service sector, putting many small firms out of business, and having flow on effects for household revenue, the job market, mortgage repayments and consumption…The two-month lockdown of Shanghai, China’s commercial hub, and partial lockdown of other major cities, increased pressure on the economy in the second quarter, resulting in growth of just 0.8 per cent year on year…The at-all-cost endeavour to curb the less-deadly Omicron variant, with which many Western countries have chosen to live with, has raised eyebrows at home and abroad…Some argue the move has deviated from the decades-old focus on economic development.


Overall Comment 


After having read these articles in detail it emerges that Xi Jinping is a dyed in the wool communist of the Mao-Marx lineage . He has three ambitions – Be recognised as the greatest of all Chinese leaders – Make China an unquestioned superpower – Perpetuate communist rule in China. His vision is to achieve  the Chinese Dream through complete state control, development of hard military power backed by strong economic power. He will attempt to dominate great power relations so that he can establish  a Sino-centric global order. Excessive economic liberalization, unbalanced material culture and wide inequity will be jettisoned eventually. In this paradigm, Xi Jinping will yank further left to make China a command economy. Large powerful state enterprises will retain precedence over the once vibrant private sector. We will continue to hear the cornerstones of Xiconomics –  “anti-corruption campaign”, “common prosperity” “victory over covid” “a new model of win – win cooperation” “greatest military on earth” ”strong military in a new era” “dual circulation” “revenge on the century of humiliation” . As Xi heads into his third term it appears that xi Jinping is recreating the Frankenstein called Mao! 


12 responses to “A Peek Into Everyday China : Focus on Xiconomics by Lt Gen P R Shankar (R)”

  1. “He has three ambitions – Be recognised as the greatest of all Chinese leaders – Make China an unquestioned superpower – Perpetuate communist rule in China.”There is only strong evidence for one of the three amibtions you've identified. The Party wishes to continue to rule China now and forever. There is no indication that China wishes to rule the world like the US. If we only limit ourselves to observations about military spending this is obvious. The US spends close to 4% of GDP on a global empire of military bases. China spent 1.7% of GDP on military spending in 2021 and has one overseas base. If relations deteriorate further with India, then there might be 4 Chinese overseas bases (additional bases in Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Cambodia). That's hardly the foundation of a global empire.On the last point, there is a lack of personality cult surrounding Xi to indicate the egotistical desire to exceed the historical memory of other Party leaders.

  2. I know you can't tell the truth because you are under your government and if tell against it then they will execute you

  3. India can't compete with China. If there is one theme to this blog it is sustaining the delusion that India can compete. Why lie to yourself? To the Indian public?

  4. Mr Anonymous,Ha! The truth hurts! China is imploding. Give it time! Your banks have already started imploding. Real estate is doomed and you the PLA, cannot take on 1.3 billion people. Its only a question of time before CCP will be gone and the peoples revolution succeeds! This is not going to happen overnight but the wrecker train has left the station to reach its final destination.CCP and PLA cant fool everybody all the time but has succeeded in fooling some people some of the time! Keep burying your head in the sand; you will be run over soon!

  5. That's a lot of wishful thinking. Prayer is not a thinking man's type of geopolitical planning. What kind of situation will India be in if China doesn't implode? In fact what happens if China keeps on growing like it has for 40 years? What if the gap between China and India keeps on increasing? China has a lot going for it, most of all a lot of smart people. India has a lot of overwhelming problems and not many smart people. By the time India reaches a $10 trillion economy, China will be past $70 trillion.

  6. India is not China to execute dissenters. I know the chinese don't get this as they can't imagine a life where they don't have to toe the party line. And, this is not about India competing with China. It's about lessons to be learned from the Chinese development model and the hubris of overreach.

  7. Are they heading towards the equivalent of our Emergency period of our Socialist miasma ? A combination of populist socialism and authoritarian control ?

  8. Anonymous, 11.57 pm posting.Dream on! The whole world is pushing back on China! It will take time nut its happening! 70 Trillion! Keep smoking on what you are! Love the brainwashed “ brain”! China cant honour a single agreement. Just ONE example, Hong Kong!The wheel is turning and soon you will be without a job since CCP will be kicked out! Why are PLA tanks surrounding your banks? Why are people rebelling?Dream on and keep smoking or doping yourself!The whole world is against China! Why is youth unemployment rate at 20%???Companies are leaving China! Pray ( sorry you cant do that in China, since you will be shot), but hope that you have your job in a few years time!

  9. Anonymous ( Mr PLA )Posting of 27th Aug 11.59 pmIndians are not smart people according to your PLA bosses!Please explain why China held back casualties on 2020 clash for 8 months!! India acknowledged loss of 20 bravehearts and it took China 8 months to acknowledge 4!! Ha ha! World recognises at 45 Chinese DEAD! How come there are no Chinese heading top international companies? Too stupid? Read if you can: come Indians are heading top positions incl CEO’s?Microsoft, cisco, alphabet, Twitter, just to name a few? Unfortunately, uneducated people like you will never know the truth!Bury your head in the sand for you will never realise when you have been run over. China’s decline has started! What if you NEVER reach 70 trillion economy ( which you can keep dreaming about!) the world pushback has started! All your threats against shooting down Pelosi’s plane was just hot air! Paper tiger!

  10. According to David Becker, the average IQ of India is 82; the average IQ of China is over 100. are many Indian CEOs of global brands. The top 10 are Google, Microsoft, Adobe, Twitter, IBM, Barclays, Fedex, Chanel, Albertsons, Micron. However, 4 out of 10 are Tamil Brahmins (Google, Barclays, Fedex, and Albertsons). As is evident first hand to the general from working at IIT Madras, Tamil Brahmins are very smart and dominate the intellectual landscape. Despite numbering only 2 million out of 1.4 billion Indians, Tamil Brahmins have won 3 out 4 Indian Nobel prizes in the sciences and 1 out of 2 Abel prizes. It goes to show Tamil Brahmins are exceptionally smart. How else could a minority of 1/700 win most of the prizes and earn almost half of the best CEO jobs? The rest of India is not very smart on average. A country can never become developed if it does not have lots of smart people. Intelligence is mostly determined by biology. India has been condemned by gene expression to remain poor.

  11. If Chinese are smarter, why do they copy EVERYTHING? Why are there no prominent Chinese in large companies? Small minds small people!Copy copy copy! Worlds largest production of phoney copied goods!Proud of all Indians, irrespective of caste, creed, religion ( you PLA Chinese would not even know the word!) or colour! China is on a path to fail; welcome to the REAL world outside of EVERYTHING CENSORED China!

  12. dear retarded chinese monkey.. take china's IQ and stuff it up your *** the average IQ of India is 82 — haha — see 11 jinping and the PLA piss in their pants on the very mention of 82 (hint: taiwan .. taiwan – 2nd august 2022). grass mud horse .. chinese monkey

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: