Briefing Note

Project: Asia Programme

Tim Summers
  • The financial crisis not only has had an impact on China's growing international influence, but also its domestic politics.
  • The state has assumed a stronger role, both in supporting state-owned companies and with respect to the provinces. So far this has enhanced the authority of the Wen Jiabao government.
  • Government stimulus packages may boost the economy, but also carry the risk of aggravating the recent boom-bust approach. Bad loans made now could create future political problems. Corruption is a major political problem.
  • China's development strategy is likely to shift to a more self-reliant, less export-dependent model.
  • The threat of social unrest is manageable, with security forces taking on increased importance.
  • Despite the current political stability, the Party is entering a key period ahead of the next leadership transition starting in 2012.