context: Global uncertainty and slow domestic consumption and investment are dragging down economic forecasts. Experts agree China needs new growth drivers, but they differ on which sectors hold the most potential. If consensus settles, state-led development models will direct investors and state support in that direction. Here, a top macroeconomic advisor proposes atypical sectors.

China’s core growth model has transitioned from a rigid planned economy to a market economy, and by Q1 2018, consumption generated 70 percent of growth, says Zheng Xinli 郑新立 Central Policy Research Office. The transformation went through three phases

  • 1980s
    • light industry
    • rural land property reform
  • 1990s: four ‘pillar’ industries
    • electronic machinery
    • chemical engineering
    • automobile
    • construction
  • 2000s
    • expressways
    • high speed rail (HSR)
    • information and telecommunications

Moving forward, Zheng recommends developing

  • general aviation and aviation infrastructure
    • manufacturing of civil aircraft
    • airport construction
    • pilot training
    • information and telecommunications facilities
  • digital economy and internet of things (IoT) based on next generation IT
    • 5G-based IoT and 5G-based mobile consumption
    • fibre-optic, IPv6 and broadband networks
    • automatic frequency control
    • low interference technology
  • high-end public and social services, as traditional service industries like transportation, logistics, commerce and food are already saturated
    • education
    • healthcare
    • financial services, accounting and auditing
    • legal consulting
    • culture, design and creative industries
  • modern agriculture and rural revitalisation through improved property rights protection for land, housing and labour
    • land rental or transfer to specialised professional agricultural agencies while farmers remain collective land owners
    • rural infrastructure upgrading, including housing, transportation, utilities and telecommunications
    • settling rural migrants in urban regions
    • rural tourism and tertiary services through feature towns

In July 2018 Guizhou became the first demonstration province for the general aviation (GA) industry, reports Guizhou Daily. Guizhou wants its GA sector to generate 10 bn revenue by 2020, says the report.