Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Kunchin Lin of Berkeley has this very interesting insight on the issue of elevating cities to the provincial level (see postings below):

We should've expected this. Furthermore, I've three
insights from my interview with a NPC member in 2002:

1) This is Jiang Zemin's move.

2) The next step is to redistribute. One key means to accomplish that is to TAKE AWAY the extrabudgetary authorities of the cities. If we see this move in the next year, the "recentralization" argument would be hugely strengthened and Jiang would've scored a big victory that he was unable to accomplish under his own regime.

3) The NPC will be involved in designing the
procedural aspects of the fiscal redistribution.
Poorer provinces will gang up on the coastal gold

My reply:

I don't doubt what you say, but why would Jiang back something that will piss off a lot of local officials? And why get the NPC involved in this. If the idea is to get Western provinces to gang up on Jiangsu, it seems like it is a move by Hu and Wen, who have close connections with the West.

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