China’s Economic Development


China has gone through many different stages from being one of the richest countries in the world to one of the poorest. However they are currently climbing back up the economic ladder since reforms were brought into being in 1978. Since 1978, the economic reforms that China’s leaders have carried out have helped to increase China’s wealth at a rapid speed. Today, China is seen to be a wealthy country with a general standard of living for its residents at the same kind of level as Brazil.


During the reign of the Song Dynasty (circa 1200) it is thought that China had the most advanced technologies than any other country. However during the period of 1500 to 1800, China lost much of its wealth and the world economic leaders led to countries in Western Europe.

One of the reasons that is given for the loss of economy and technology was the English Industrial Revolution. This era changed the way Western Europe worked and new science and technologies were being discovered all the time. Not all of China’s lost wealth has been attributed to the Industrial Revolution for much has also been placed as political under the leadership of the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. Their leadership discouraged new technologies therefore having a devastating effect on the economy.

The economy then suffered even more devastation under the communist rule from 1952 to 1978. The ideas of communism send the people of China into despair for they had no room to diverse from the regime that ordered them. In addition to this, the leaders of China reduced the standard of living to such extremes that the people of China suffered and as a result, China became one of the poorest countries in the world.


The Communism rule came to an end in 1976 with the death of Mao Zedong. The new regime and government under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping saw a need for economic reform. In December of 1978, they began a program that was designed to increase the living standards of the Chinese people. The reforms did not happen overnight and instead a gradual growth has appeared in China’s economy ever since the reforms were put into place.


The reforms of 1978 were just the beginning. They have been adapted through experimentation since 1978 to bring China’s economy the progress that was needed to put China back to the top of economic growth. These reforms are still working to allow China to become one of the wealthiest countries of the future.