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China's vital rural industries

Overview

China's economy is often seen as being divided between the industries of its ever-growing cities and the agriculture of its huge rural areas. The countryside is the scene of social discontent that alarms the central authorities, but also contains a vital driver for growth in the shape of town and village enterprises.

These played a big role in fuelling the initial growth spurt of the 1980s and must be taken into account as a central element in the economic outlook. The balance...

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