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China promised to double GDP in 10 years. Did it manage?

In November 2012, during the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Chinese government set a growth objective for both GDP and GDP per capita.
The objective to meet was to double the 2010 results by 2020.
In 2010, Chinese GDP was 6,06 trillion USD, and GDP per capita 4550,45 USD.
Now that we are almost at the end of 2020, it should be time to check the data.
Can we actually say that the Chinese government succeeded?

An extraordinary GDP growth

When analyzing the results of the period between 2010 and 2018, it is possible to see that the Chinese growth was without rivals among major economies.

Source: World Bank

While developed economies – with the notable exception of USA – were more or less stable, China and India were different cases. India grew by around 68% in 8 years, while China got to a 126% growth in the same period. The comparison is important, as India is often compared with China due to the similarities between the two.
And yet, China managed to almost double the admirable results of India.
The USA, by comparison, grew by 37%, an impressive feat considering the results of the other developed countries.
So, this part of the promise made by the CPC was delivered 2 years earlier than anticipated.
But doubling the GDP was not the hardest issue to sort out.

The hardest challenge: doubling GDP per capita

GDP per capita is often considered a much more down-to-earth measurement of how well a nation is doing. As a matter of fact, regular GDP gives an advantage to countries with big population, leaving small countries behind.
The GDP per capita, on the other hand, exactly measures the average wealth of a citizen in each country.
Comparing the same countries, China’s trend looks quite similar.

Source: World Bank

By 2018, China had grown by 114%, while India had grown by a bit more than 48%.
Among developed countries, only Germany and USA registered a growth, respectively of 14,6% and 29,5%.

What comes next?

While growing GDP are great signs of a developing economy, China is gradually changing the pace. The government talks more and more about sustainable growth and less about inflating the GDP. The importance given to fighting poverty and climate change will undoubtedly slow down nominal growth.
This also will define the future direction of the PRC, and determine which businesses will be more successful to work here.
Clean energy, public transportation and alternative materials are just examples of what China will need in its future.

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