Wanted: A New Miracle

China's remarkably successful economic growth model is being sorely tested by the global downturn. Here's how the country can get its boom back

Ian Teh / Panos

Migrant construction workers like these Beijing commuters are becoming casualties of China's economic slowdown

Huang Shaobi was just 7 years old, growing up dirt poor in southeast China, when the world she would inherit changed forever. It was 30 years ago--December 1978--when China's leadership decided the time had come for their country to open up its economy and embrace something akin to capitalism. The monumental shift--China under Mao Zedong had been a centrally planned economic disaster--reflected the growing, behind-the-scenes influence of a man few in the West had then heard of: Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping. China, the ruling Communist Party decreed back then, "required great growth in the productive forces." And Deng was smart enough...

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