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International scholars in general believe that China is still a country in transition and should not be considered a market economy, but maybe it can be considered a semi-market economy.

Some consider China still a planned economy.

As for domestic scholars, Prof. Chang Xiuze of the State Planning Commission Macro Economy Institute pointed out that there are two extreme judgments on China's degree of marketization: some say it is under 40%, while others say its above 60%, or already approaching a "market economy." Chang's own judgment is in the middle, namely 50%.

We should point out the following points in Prof. Chang's analysis:

(1) China is still in transition from a planned economy to a market economy; this process has by far not concluded, but is still difficult.

(2) Considering rural China's natural economy, considering the several thousand years of a feudal economy and the 40 years of a planned economy (1952-1992), considering the various welfare benefits of urban employees, considering the special cadre system in China, then it is not appropriate to say China's marketization degree has already surpassed 50%.

(3) We should allow all kinds of views on this issue, but they must be consistent in their logic. Some arguments in Prof. Chang's article require further discussion. For instance, on the one hand Chang believes that marketization of the capital market is only 17.2%, and the land market only 22.5%, but he considers the marketization of products to have already reached 61.71%, and labor 70%. Obviously, such a contrasting situation is not in keeping with reality. In addition, Chang believes that the marketization of agricultural products is higher than industrial products, this is not in keeping with the development of productive forces.

(4) Views on the degree of marketization can only be mainly based on an analysis of quality, the quantification is just a way of illustration in the discussion. Chang's article attempts to quantify the degree of marketization down to two digits after the percentage point; for instance, his marketization of agricultural products is 77.20%, products in general is 61.71%, and general productive factors is 36.57%. This way of pursuing "accuracy" is perhaps not suitable for sociological studies.


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