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Minxin Pei
Says More…

This week in Say More, PS talks with Minxin Pei, Professor of Government at Claremont McKenna College, a non-resident senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and the author of The Sentinel State: Surveillance and the Survival of Dictatorship in China.

Project Syndicate: In early 2023, you observed that China’s leaders had “fallen back in love with economic growth.” Over a year later, China’s leaders are still pledging to reinvigorate flagging economic performance. How can the government make good on that promise, and will it be enough to silence a growing cohort of skeptics?

Minxin Pei: The Chinese government can still do quite a lot to revive the economy, but that does not mean that it will.

For example, China’s government could give ordinary people vouchers redeemable for daily necessities, thereby stimulating household consumption and offsetting, at least partly, the effects of an imploding real-estate bubble. Similarly, reining in its “anti-espionage” campaign – including by releasing the private entrepreneurs that have been wrongfully imprisoned – could help to lure back foreign investors that are now afraid to engage with China.