74 SOCIAL SCIENTIST
regional adminilitrations and there was 'no systematic attempt by the central authoftties to coordinate the various regional plans. In fact^ to the Lushan Conference in 1959, Mao attacked "those planners N10 did no planning", for failing to dfaw up a system of material balanced for the ece&otoy< Even within the regional administrations, target setting was done by the "survey sysUm^ and n6 attempts were mdde at using input-output techniques or Optimisation methods for planning as is brought out even by the "sympathetic" Western literature on China. Also the entire strategy of rural industrialisation within the confines of the commune/ during the Great Leap Forwaird and the Cultural Revolution, implied that even the regional admims*-(ration could do no detailed target setting, due to the collective ownership of the commune. The ^very periods criticised by Xue for ^vercentralisation in planning, in fad, had very little centralised planning which oNiously led t6 the problems expounded by him in great detail. Therefore Xue's unconditional advocay of a decent tralised planning system in the post-Cultural Revolution phase of China, can be highly problematic for its future development.
In spite of certain lacuna, this boofe its a
mpulsory reading for alt those seriously wishing to understand the political economy of China's growth. It is all the more Welcome as a systematic analysis of the Chinese situation by a Chinese economist, after a spate of either eulogies or outright condemnation of China by Western sources.
^ R RAMANA Teaches economics at St. Stephens College, Delhf.
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