A Reflection on China’s Economic Reform from the Perspective of Catholic Social Teaching

in International Journal of Public Theology
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It has been nearly four decades since China initiated its economic reform in 1978. In spite of the fact that this reform has brought unprecedented economic growth to China, it is viewed by many (including myself) as problematic and has recently been caught in a tension between recession and inequity. This article explores the structural flaws of China’s economic reforms in the light of modern Catholic social teaching, with particular reference to the basic theological principles it applies within the political-economic spheres. On the basis of the Catholic understanding of economic liberty, market, government, and equity, this article furnishes a public theological agenda for China’s economic reforms, in order to help resolve the problems they are facing. Meanwhile, based on the same theological standpoint, it also provides a critical assessment of the New Left’s negation of the liberal economy.