Din07Mei201912:00Het Pand, Zaal Vermeylen
China-Russia lecture café 2: China and Russia, Uneasy Similarities
Koen Schoors (UGent)
While Russia is an electoral autocracy, China is just an autocracy. Several observers have argued that this difference constitutes the main reason why China has been growing much faster than China. In this reading of the facts, the combination of political autocracy and proper economic rules would provide an economic model for the future, with Singapore and Dubai as main role models. I defend the reverse position. In Russia, bureaucratic promotion is increasingly based on loyalty and the political leadership of the country has not been renewed for 20 years now, leading to stagnation. China has been economically more successful than Russia in recent decades, precisely because it managed to mimic some characteristics of democracies. The current Chinese leadership is abandoning these characteristics. China is starting to exhibit uneasy similarities with its big Russian neighbour. Stagnation will infallibly follow.