Providing Public Goods in Transitional China
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China’s leaders faced a major challenge to provide citizens with acceptable social welfare during the economic transition. They are confronted with building a new support system in the countryside, shifting the burden in urban China from the factory to the local state, and integrating new social groups, into existing systems. The book comprises a detailed study of healthcare, disease control, social insurance and social relief.
a strategic role for the state to provide minimum guarantees and to serve as a provider of last resort. Programs such as rural pension provision are extremely ambitious for a developing country. These shifts in service provision entail profound consequences for the relationship between state and society, with an increasing role for nonstate providers in the allocation of goods and services. They require a significant reorientation of the state’s role and also have consequences for what it means
period from 200 per 1000 before 1949 to 34.7 per 1000 in 1980 and to 19 per 1000 in 2005. China’s development has meant that by the 1980s it was undergoing the same epidemiological transition that had occurred in the developed economies, with infectious diseases giving way to chronic diseases (heart problems, cancer, etc.) as the leading causes of death (Blumenthal and Hsiao: 2005, p. 1166). The slowing of progress in the 1990s is clearly seen with respect to the healthcare indicators. According
AIDS Working Committee Office: 2007). These revised figures have been met with skepticism by some in the HIV/AIDS community, and other estimates run up to 1.5 million. Thus, although widespread, the infection has a low prevalence (0.05 percent), with concentration in a number of provinces. However, given the recent increased policy attention, the two reports and their sponsors were at pains to point out that this was no cause for complacency as there had been around 50,000 new infections in the
Although policy has shifted significantly, these 10.1057/9780230615434 - Providing Public Goods in Transitional China, Anthony Saich public health crises and pandemics / 125 groups are still viewed at best with suspicion and at worst as criminals. As a result, it is very difficult for government and party agencies to reach out to them. This is something that could be performed more effectively by NGOs and grassroots support groups. Public health education and care for those afflicted with
the ability of the government to finance such pensions in the foreseeable future. Given the scandals that have surrounded the misuse of pension funds, it is perhaps surprising that respondents expressed high levels of trust in the local and central government agencies that administer pensions. It is interesting to speculate whether such strong opinions would have been held in Shanghai after the purge of Party Secretary Chen Liangyu for pension fund–related scandals. By marked contrast,