MERICS China's Political System header


The Chinese government is one of the most important actors in international affairs today. China’s global economic and diplomatic presence is challenging the earlier dominance by the Western powers. To thoroughly understand how the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has grown in power requires a careful analysis of its political system. What contribution has the political system and government activity made in respect to China’s economic transformation? What consequences will the economic modernisation and world-economic integration have on the political system? Is the political system able to adapt to changing economic, technological, and international conditions? Which potentials and risks will shape the mid-term development of the political system?

The book offers a differentiated understanding of the conditions, potentials and risks of the political development in China. It is based on a comprehensive of analysis of Chinese resources and gives readers the most current overview of international China research.

"China's political system" published by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers is available on Amazon.

The German version of the book is available in bookshops or online at:

AmazonThaliaBücher.deWeltbild, Springer

China's Political System cover

Updates on China's Political System

We have updated all chapters until May 2018. You can browse all updates on China's Political System by key word or chapter of the book. 

4.4 The political initiation and implementation of economic reform

Xi Jinping announces start of “new era” for China

During the 19thParty Congress Xi Jinping declared China was entering a new era. The term reflects strengthening self-confidence it’s the country’s ability. This includes its economic ambitions to establish a strong, innovative and globally leading economy. In line with the ambition was the CCP’s declared goal of establishing a moderately prosperous society under socialism with Chinese characteristics.

Source EN, Source CN

4.6 The role of government in the banking and financial systems

People’s Bank of China cuts reserve requirement ratio

Banks who meet certain requirements will have their reserve requirement cut from 20 to 15 percent. In reality almost all banks qualify.

Source EN

Trust companies will soon be able to underwrite nonfinancial corporate bonds

The underwriting business was previously almost completely dominated by state owned enterprises.

Source EN

Small businesses financial difficulties to be alleviated

The State Council announced they have taken several measures to make banks’ lending to SMEs cheaper. Interest derived from loans to SMEs will be VAT free until 2019, loans to SMEs will be subject to lower tax and banks that lend to SMEs will be subject to lower reserve requirements.

Source CN

The deposit requirement on currency forwards was removed

In order to cap the yuan’s strength, the central bank lifted the reserve requirements on currency trades.

Source EN

Mixed rules for investment

Outbound investment into gambling and entertainment industries will be banned, property investments restricted, while investment related to the Belt and Road Initiative will be encouraged. At the same time foreign direct investment into the country will be encouraged.

Source EN

5.1 Political control and “social management”

New literature

New study in Science magazine gives merit to China’s previous One-Child policy.

5.6 The media and public opinion

Cyberspace Administration of China issues "Security Assessment and Management Regulations concerning New Technologies and New Applications in Internet News Information Service"

On October 30, 2017, China’s top cyberspace regulator published new regulations mandating a security assessment for new technology-based information products or applications, screening them, among others, for their potential to shape public opinion and mobilize the population. The regulations came into effect on December 1, 2017.

Source EN, Source CN

6.11 Environmental policy: Curtailing urban air pollution

Environmental protection at the 19th Party Congress

Xi Jinping announced new regulatory agencies to manage state-owned natural resources. Besides that, the CCP charter puts more emphasis on environmental protection: “raise awareness that lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets” was added to it.

2.10.1 Regulation and law-making

Codification of National Anthem Law

On September 1, the Standing Committee of the NPC approved the National Anthem Law. The NPC Standing Committee further extended the law to Hong Kong in November.

Source EN, Source CN

Editor and principal author