Peking University Holds New Year Forum on China’s Economic Reforms


Beijing, Jan. 6, 2013, — China’s top business school is holding its once-in-a-year economic forum. This year, the forum has drawn wide attention, as the Communist Party of China has elected the new leadership and vows more reforms.

China’s economy is slowing down, while major problems have yet to be solved. The income gaps are still increasing, with the Gini index well above the red alert, the environmental cost is still heavy, and exports are declining due to global economic recessions.

The message is clear. The question is how. At the Guanghua School of Management at Peking University, China’s answer to Harvard Business School, heavy weight scholars and entrepreneurs from across the nation gather at its once-in-a-year economic forum.

The central question: what kind of reforms should China launch?

Liu Xue, economist of Peking University, said, “The upcoming reforms should not just be economic restructuring like before, but a fundamental change of the entire system. The most important reform is the way of governance.”

Yi Gang, Vice Governor of People’s Bank of China, said, “The government should be limited in its role and have a clear boundary. At the moment the Chinese government has intervened too much in areas it should not intrude, and has neglected many of its real obligations. But at the same time, citizens should also realize that you can’t blame everything on the government and should begin to take up more social responsibility.”

Ren Zhiqiang, real estate businessman, said, “The real social responsibility we are calling for is for citizens to strive for a society they want to live in. Everyone of us has a share in it, that is to stand up and push forward the establishment of a more democratic system.”

The New Year Seminar is one of the most influential academic forums for China’s economic development. For over a decade, many proposals raised at the seminar have been transformed into concrete policies. With China’s booming economy coming to a major crossroad, it might be the right time for the nation to calm down and reflect a bit, before moving forward.