Chapter 6: Rising Technological Capability
CHINA BECOMING AN ENGINE OF GROWTH China is now seen as the engine of economic growth in our global system. Let me start by referring to comments made by one of our leading development economists 25 years ago. Sir Arthur Lewis, the Nobel Economics Prize winner, in his lecture to the memory of Alfred Nobel on 8 December 1979 gave the following title to his speech: ‘The Slowing Down of the Engine of Growth’. He started his talk with the following sentences: Let me begin by stating my problem. For the past hundred years the rate of growth of output in the developing world has depended on the rate of growth of output in the developed world. When the developed grow fast the developing grow fast, and when the developed slow down, the developing slow down. Is this linkage inevitable? More speciﬁcally, the world has just gone through two decades of unprecedented growth, with world trade growing twice as fast as ever before, at about eight per cent per annum in real terms, compared with 0.9 per cent between 1913 and 1939, and less than four per cent per annum between 1873 and 1913. During these prosperous decades the LDCs have demonstrated their capacity to increase their total output at six per cent per annum, and have indeed adopted six per cent as the minimum average target for LDCs as a whole. But what is to happen if the MDCs return to their former growth rates, and raise their...
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