Report: China still in early stages of development

17:31, January 17, 2011      

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Holding a middle ranking among developing countries, China is still a country at an elementary stage of development. It is expected to complete the first modernization by around 2015, which means it will catch up the same level developed countries reached in 1960, according to a report from the Chinese Academy of Sciences on Jan. 16.

In 2005, there were approximately 20 developed countries among the countries that have a population of more than 1 million, according to the report's analysis of more than 100 countries across the world.

More than 20 countries, including the United States, have entered the second modernization period, which marks the shift from an industrial civilization to a knowledge-based civilization, while more than 90 countries, including China, are still undergoing the first modernization, which is the shift from an agricultural civilization to an industrial civilization, according to the report.

The researchers who drafted the report found that for technological advances, developed countries mainly relied on innovations, and "innovation accounted for 80 percent, while learning took up 20 percent." In moderately developed countries, innovation accounted for 40 percent of technological advances and learning took up 60 percent. In elementary developed countries, innovation only accounted for 20 percent of technological improvements.

In 2008, China ranked 69th among the 131 countries across the world after it had completed 89 percent of the first modernization goal, according to the report.

China has achieved benchmarks in six indicators for its modernization index, including the ratio of doctors per person, the average life expectancy, infant survival rate, the adult literacy rate, the proportion of added value of agriculture and the college attendance rate. But it has failed to reach the standard of per capita income, the proportion of the agricultural labor force, the proportion of added value of services and the proportion of urban population, according to the report.

"China has more population than that in all developed countries, which exerts severe impacts on its completion of modernization," said He Chuanqi, an expert from the Chinese Academy of Sciences

The report made three suggestions. The first was to build a prosperous society to eliminate absolute poverty in 10 years. Second, set up the Chinese Academy of Science and Technology for Development to provide a public technology platform for Chinese enterprises. The third is to establish the China Modernization Research Institute to provide scientific support for China's modernization.

"At present, China is still an elementary developed country," the report concluded.

The China Modernization Report 2011 was published by the Chinese Academy of Sciences after 10 years of research and studies.

By Li Mu, People's Daily Online


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