Last month, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang-the second highest-ranking official in China after President Xi Jinping-praised the city of Chengdu and began to attract attention. By setting up thousands of street stalls, creating 100,000 jobs overnight, these stalls usually sell food, fresh vegetables, clothes and toys.
The idea of suppliers on the streets of high-tech cities such as Shanghai and Shenzhen has caused controversy in China, partly because Beijing has spent years building China’s image as an advanced global superpower. ‘S An iconic policy project “Made in China 2025” promotes the country’s competitive influence with the United States through billions of dollars of investment in future technologies.
Professor Zeng Zhiwei, director of the SOAS China Research Institute at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, said: “The hawker does not like street vendors because it destroys the successful and beautiful image of China he likes to project.”
Xi Jinping himself reiterated in recent weeks that he has long been committed to providing high-tech solutions to China’s economic difficulties. He recently called on the country to invest in 5G networks and next-generation satellites as part of a plan to promote economic growth and employment.
Grim political reality
In addition, he said, solving large-scale, expensive infrastructure projects as a solution to Beijing’s economic difficulties may not be as good as before.
China’s response to the last major economic shock (ie, the 2008-2009 global financial crisis) involved substantial investment in roads, airports and high-speed rail lines. This time, the stimulation line is saturated.
He added that the last financial crisis also made China bear a lot of debt, so this time it is important to focus on private consumption.
Tang Min, a Chinese government consultant, recently told reporters in Beijing that street vendors not only create jobs, but also address people’s concerns about indoor crowding during a pandemic.
Tang said: “However, it cannot replace the’conventional’ economy, and there are very limited things that can be bought and sold on the street.” “The government cannot let it develop uncontrolled-we must continue to experiment and explore it, so we must Supervise.”
At the annual political gathering in May, Li Peng was outspoken about China’s problems and the extent to which some people may not be able to participate in China’s high-tech future. About 600 million Chinese (about 40% of the population) can earn an average of only 1,000 yuan (US$141) per month.
“Li Zheng is trying to solve pressing problems in a…realistic way,” Lin Liwei, an adjunct professor at the Chinese Studies Center of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said. He said that although street vendors may not be perfect, there may be no better option to create a large number of jobs in a short period of time.
“Employment is a very important issue, and it may cause political unrest… Li Pengfei is clearly worried about the disastrous consequences of mass unemployment.”
Zeng Yinquan, president of the SOAS China Research Institute, said that Li Guangyao is probably just trying to monitor the country’s main economic policies.
Zeng Yinquan said: “The pandemic allowed him to play more established roles as prime minister in economic operations, and for most of Xi Jinping’s time, he was in a narration.” “He understood that Covid-19’s economic impact will A pragmatic and more emphasis on attitude is needed to allow and even encourage those who are fired on the streets to be fired because of the pandemic.”
Local government enterprising
In recent days, public discussions about Li’s promotion of street vendors in China have gradually faded out, as major cities including Beijing and Shenzhen have made it clear that they do not welcome the policies there.
Professor Lin of the Chinese University of Hong Kong said: “Street stalls will not completely disappear in reality.” He predicts that as long as unemployment remains the top priority, local governments can advance the plan.