The People's Republic of China has sought, since its inception in 1949, to develop through economic planning at the national level rather than rely on traditional free market mechanisms. This paper examines the changing characteristics of this economic planning over time, including the shifting balance between centralizing and decentralizing policies. The disruptive effects of the "Great Leap Forward" and the Cultural Revolution are also discussed and the general features of the contemporary situation are examined. © 1980.
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