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By David S.G. Goodman, Gerald Segal

China seems set to regain its former energy, experiencing the world's quickest fiscal development for over a decade. the demanding situations posed through reforms, the members examine components that would result in or hinder the break-up of China.

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The lack of evidence of separatism is not at all surprising given both the pivotal role of the CCP and the PRC’s economic performance since 1978. Indeed, the two are clearly closely related. The CCP has staked its ability to maintain its leading role on both the PRC’s economic performance and its ability to keep its nerve. The real test is likely to come later, for both the CCP and political unity, if and when growth slows significantly. 18 Nonetheless, it is clearly necessary to reinterpret the structures of the Chinese state in a period of relatively rapid economic and social change.

A particular state which failed to inspire patriotism was, in his estimation, not a state at all. Chen turned for illustration to the states of Europe and America where the state was ‘an organisation whose members cooperate in the search for the security and happiness of the citizens’ and for which all citizens felt corresponding love and respect. Such a state had never been known in China, so there were few patriots; or, rather, since there were so few patriots in China there was no state to speak of: Once the meaning of the state has been cleared up, one is able to say that we Chinese are not patriots.

The conservative outlook of its provinces is hardly surprising, given both their lack of capacity for domestic economic initiatives or opportunity for external economic relations: largely unreformed Russia and North Korea are its immediate neighbours. In Northwest China the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, discussed by Peter Ferdinand, presents the PRC with a much more radical challenge. Here there is fundamental opposition to the very idea of its inclusion in the PRC, fuelled by developments across the borders in the newly independent Kazakhstan and Kirghizstan.

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