CEPII, Recherche et Expertise sur l'economie mondiale
China’s 13th Five-Year Plan. In Pursuit of a “Moderately Prosperous Society”


Michel Aglietta
Guo Bai

Chinese reform is an endogenous process that feeds on its own contradictions, and creates its own way through stages, interspersed by crises that are part of the reform. The Directives paper issued by the central committee of the CCP at its third plenum in November 2013 is a theoretical compendium of a strategic view of the reform. The 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020), adopted in March 2016 by the People’s National Assembly of China, is the most articulated document to date and explains the objectives and their implementation over the next five years.

In order to understand the Plan, this paper focuses on six paramount objectives from this long and detailed document: shift from capital accumulation-led growth to innovation-led growth; integrated urban-rural development; green development; inclusive development; finance and State-owned Enterprise-(SOE) reform; opening up to the world.

The process of reform is acknowledged to be under way. The paper analyzes the objectives identified and their content and it highlights their interdependencies to underline the comprehensive “new normal” strategy.

Quantitative targets:
• Bottom line: 6.5% annual average growth GDP from 2016 to 2020 to double 2010 GDP per capita.
• R&D expenditure: 2.5% GDP in 2020 from 2.1% in 2015.
• Urbanization rate: 60% of population in 2020 from 56.1% in 2015.
• Green development: by 2020 to reduce emissions per unit of GDP by 40, to 45% compared to 2005 levels. Increase the share of non-fossil fuel energy to 15% by 2020.
• Social welfare: lift 55.75 million more people out of poverty by 2020. One-child limit increased to two children per couple. Extend coverage of urban welfare services to all residents.
• Financial targets: merge 106 SOEs under central government ownership into 40 world-class groups in strategic industries. Achieve full Yuan convertibility by 2020.

 Keywords : Innovation-led growth | green development | State-owned enterprises (SOEs) | debt cleaning

 JEL : O11, O53, P11
CEPII Policy Brief
N°2016-12,  2016

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