All change in China this week, as the ‘old guard’ of the ruling Communist Party step down in favour of younger, more vigourous leaders.
So change only in terms of personel, not policies. The new boys would not have been allowed within light years of the reins of power were they not commited to continued rule by the Party.
But that doesn’t mean that it is going to be easier for them to do so. For the last 20 years or so China has been moving from command to market economy and now over 50% of the GDP is generated by the private sector. The changes have been formally recognised by the decision to allow ‘capitalists’ to join the Party so that their interests can be represented as well. Yes, that is absurd but how else are the ruling elite going to cope with changes and stay in power?
Capitalism in China now appears to be irreversible so the big question is how long the present political architecture stand erect against the hurricanes of economic change on the ground.