The Chinese path to modernization offers the Global South an alternative model to pursue modernization attuned to their own realities, a scholar has said.
China has followed “a pragmatic path” and achieved an industrial and social transformation without colonization, imperialism or exploiting other countries, John Pang, a senior fellow at New York-based Bard College, has told Xinhua.
While learning from the experience of the West, China has attuned to its own history and culture, said Pang.
“This is a model for others to go forward with an attunement and understanding of their own history, including the history of their political economy,” said Pang.
“It absolutely overturns the theory, that is sort of the paradigm of social science in the 20th and early 21st century, that is the convergence hypothesis of modernization and that all modernization leads to a single model,” he said.
It is a separation from the path of neoliberalism, which is failing in fact, he added.
The path of neoliberalism “provided this illusion that there was a path to prosperity for the Global South. In fact, that’s a complete illusion. The ladder was not there, or the ladder gets pulled away if you go a few steps up, as the countries of Southeast Asia discovered in 1997, when there was the Asian financial crisis,” said Pang.
“The Chinese path shows that the government plays a key role in delivering sustainable and equitable economic growth, that the economy needs to be governed for people, that there’s a way forward while using markets,” he said.
The Chinese path to modernization was highlighted in the report to the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) held last month, the scholar said.
In a two-step strategic plan, the CPC aims to basically realize socialist modernization from 2020 through 2035, and build China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful from 2035 through the middle of this century.
The Chinese path to modernization is at the very least an inspiration for other countries, said Pang.