By Benjamin Cost
An angry Chinese demonstrator named Du Jianguo burst in on World Bank President Robert Zoellick during a press conference on privatizing state-run business in China. Zoellick was addressing the World Bank’s new “China 2030 report” – a report advocating for more control by China’s private business sector – when Du stormed up to the podium, handing out protest pamphlets and yelling things like, “This report from the World Bank is poison!”
“The World Bank calls for China to privatize our state-owned enterprises, they want to partition these big companies. But actually, they are helping the Western companies to get rid of their Chinese competitors. There is no reason for China to privatize its state-owned enterprises, they are doing very well so far.”
Du is one of many Chinese nationalists railing against the new proposal, which sees China’s booming economy faltering in the future if the state doesn’t ease up control on business. Experts predict that China could become a “high-income” society by 2030 if it switches over from an export-heavy to more domestically-based economy.
Zoellick, who may retire from his position as bank president in June, agreed that China’s boom will not last, and that adjustments need to be made to cope with the world economic crisis.
The entire 459-page China 2030 report is viewable here. For an in-depth analysis on the China 2030 report from Analects, The Economist’s new China blog, click here.