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Corporatism and agricultural reform in China: a comparison with Hong Kong.

Corporatism and Agricultural Reform in China

Reforming the agricultural sector began immediately after Deng Xiaoping assumed leadership of China in 1979. A massive de-collectivization programme in the early 1980s freed peasants to engage in independent household farming through the so-called "family joint-working contracting system" (jiating lianchan chengbaozhi). Under this system, arable land owned by the state was distributed or contracted out to every peasant household which could support itself and earn extra income from farming. This system worked well in the beginning. Agricultural production increased drastically in comparison with the collectivization period from 1949. By 1990, China had changed from a food-deficient country to a food-surplus one.

However, the hard fact was that peasant income did not, by and large, increase with the rise in production. State planners found that as society adapted from central planning to a market economy under Deng's reform programme, the small producers and farming households could not cope with the ever-changing conditions of the big market. Chinese peasants lagged far behind in terms of economies of scale, usage of technology, marketing methods and integration of production processes as found in modern agricultural sectors elsewhere. The peasants also fell prey to the big businesses and enterprises that dominated the market. As a consequence, both the transaction and production costs for their produce were high, causing their final income to not amount to much.

Therefore, some peasants believed it would be to their advantage to join hands and form associations and co-operatives to help organize their agricultural production, and thereby increase economies of scale. The local officials also applauded this idea, seeing it as one means to promote the integration of agriculture (nongye chanyehua), i.e., to integrate the "family joint-working contracting system", which the Chinese authorities vowed would remain unchanged, with modern agricultural practices.

Corporatist organizations had formed in various industrial sectors soon after the launch of the economic reforms in 1978. (1) However, it was not until the mid-1990s that agricultural associations and co-operatives were established. According to statistics released by the Ministry of Agriculture, there were over 1.4 million peasant co-operative organizations by 2003. The number of peasant households joining these organizations accounted for about four per cent of the total number of peasants nationwide.

In Beijing, the percentage of agricultural produce sold through the specialist co-operative associations continues to increase. In 2003, 80 per cent of the milk came from the cooperatives, as well as 46 per cent of the vegetables and 40 per cent of the fruit. Assuming identical conditions and scales of farming, the income of the peasants in the crop growing sector who joined the associations was 35 per cent higher than those who did not join. In the animal husbandry sector, the income was 40 per cent higher. There is an increasingly strong call, voiced from within and without the Government for the enactment of a Co-operatives Law to guide formation of the co-ops. (2) In corporatist parlance, these organizations are variants of corporatism operating at the meso-or sectoral level.

Philippe C. Schmitter, defines the corporatism concept, or more correctly, state-or authoritarian-corporatism, as a system of interest representation "in which the constituent units are organized into a limited number of singular, compulsory, non-competitive, hierarchically ordered and functionally differentiated categories, recognized or licensed (if not created) by the state and granted a deliberate representational monopoly within their respective categories in exchange for observing certain controls on their selection of leaders and articulation of demands and supports". (3)

Alan Cawson, a prominent corporatist writer, presents a more societal or liberal definition: "Corporatism is a specific socio-political process in which organizations representing monopolistic functional interests engage in political exchange with state agencies over public policy outputs which combine interest representation and policy implementation through delegated self-enforcement." (4)

In the corporatist literature, the dairy industry in Britain and the United States is often used as the example most closely conforming to meso-corporatist interest intermediation and policy concertation. (5) "Meso-corporatism seems to be almost everywhere characteristic of this industry, and in particular milk production and marketing." (6) Milk is produced by a large number of small producers, but is processed and marketed by collective arrangements to stabilize prices and avoid unfair practices. This bears great resemblance to agricultural production in China, which is dominated by family-based small farmers.

Four case studies of meso-or sectoral corporatist arrangements found in China's agricultural sector are presented below. First, however, is a discussion of the peasant organizations established by the former British administrators in Hong Kong during the colonial period. These were modeled chiefly after those in western capitalist economies. Hong Kong possesses a market economy with a relatively open polity and vibrant civil society, compared to China where the economy is steadily progressing towards a market system, but has yet to relinquish its statist legacy. It will be interesting to see how far the Hong Kong model might be applied to the Mainland.

Corporatism in Hong Kong's Agricultural Sector

Until the 1980s, the population of Hong Kong still relied in part on the supply of agricultural products from the rural areas in the New Territories. In recent decades, however, agriculture has declined sharply due to rapid urbanization.

Up to the end of the Pacific War, the marketing and sales of marine fish and fresh vegetables, two major foodstuffs, were controlled by laans or middlemen. Most fishermen and farmers who were small producers, fell prey to them. To overcome the exploitative nature of business in these sectors, and in order to improve the social, economic and educational standards of the fishermen and farmers, the Hong Kong Government in 1946, under the initiative of Dr. Herklots, a co-operation expert and others, launched a co-operative movement, encouraging the formation of co-operative societies as part of its fisheries and agriculture rehabilitation programme. (7)

The formation and operation of co-operative societies in Hong Kong has been governed by the Co-operative Societies Ordinance and Rules since 15 February 1951. Under this legislation, the Registrar of Co-operative Societies is responsible for the registration of co-operative societies, audit of accounts and general supervision. Any ten or more people who are at least 18 years and are residents within, or who occupy land within the society's area of operation, can register to form a co-operative society.

Every co-operative society has a general committee of five: a chairman, treasurer, secretary and two other members, who are elected at the annual general meeting. The chairman is elected by the committee itself [Section 31(1) and 32, Co-operative Societies Ordinance and Rules]. The Government does not subsidize the societies directly, but many rely on secretarial and accounting assistance from the Government.

The first fishermen's co-operative society was established in 1952. As of March 1972, there were 75 such co-operatives with a total membership of 2,344 and share capital of HK$45,730. They included consumers' co-operative societies which purchase commodities for re-sale to members at reasonable prices and quantities. In credit (thrift and loan) societies, 3-5 per cent of the proceeds from members' sales is deducted as savings: one per cent of this is kept for festival expenses, 1-2 per cent for special expenses and 1-2 per cent for the revolving fund which is normally used for re-lending to members for various purposes on a short-term basis at low interest rates. The main objective of the "Fishermen's

Better Living Co-operatives" is to improve the living conditions of their members by building living units using either their own financial resources or with assistance from government and charitable bodies. There were four federations, i.e., leading organizations of these co-operatives, consisting of 56 member societies in 1972. They embraced some 30 per cent of the total fishing community of 45,000 persons. That year, the catch by vessels belonging to member societies accounted for some 60 per cent of the total catch at wholesale markets run by the Fish Marketing Organization (FMO). (8)

In the agricultural sector, vegetable marketing co-operative societies were formed in the same way under the same ordinance. As of 31 March 1988, there were 29 societies with a total membership of 9,385. They included pig-raising co-operative societies and their leading organization, the Federation of Pig-Raising Co-operative Societies, agricultural credit co-operative societies, better living co-operative societies, thrift and loan co-operative societies and irrigation co-operative societies. Of the total quantity of vegetables sold during 1987/8 through the Vegetable Marketing Organization (VMO), 51 per cent came from these societies. The largest society produced 6,367 tonnes or 24 per cent of all local vegetables sold through the VMO. The Federation of Vegetable Marketing Co-operative Societies (FVMCS), formed in 1953, was their leading organization with 26 member societies. (9) The leading organizations were all represented on the managing boards of the FMO and VMO with government officials established under the Fish and Vegetable Marketing Schemes.

The FMO operates as a non-profit-making concern and surplus earnings are returned in the form of services, including loans to the industry. To assist in the formation of the co-ops, the Government allocated two separate loans of $50,000 each in 1945, to be repaid the following year. In 1989, the organization operated seven wholesale fish markets and two collecting depots.

The FMO Loan Fund was established in 1946 to make short-term loans to fishermen for productive purposes. The majority of the borrowers are members of the fishermen's co-operative societies which provide corporate guarantees for the loans secured. From September 1946 to March 1989, a total of $154 million was issued to 15,568 borrowers and $132 million was repaid. The organization also administers the Marine Fish Scholarship Fund. Introduced in 1978, it provides scholarships, grants and loans for the further education and training of fishermen and their children. The FMO also operated nine primary schools and one secondary technical school to provide educational facilities catering specially to the children of fishermen. (10) As a kind of corporatist interaction, all of these activities are monitored and supervised jointly by the Government and representatives from the four fishermen's federations.

In 1989, the VMO operated a wholesale vegetable market located at Cheung Sha Wan on a non-profit-making basis, with any surplus being reinvested in the development of marketing services and the farming industry. A loan fund was established in 1953. During 1988/9, 156 loans amounting to $1.6 million were extended to farmers for productive purposes. To encourage the re-opening of fallow agricultural land for farming, an agricultural development fund was put into place in April 1988 with initial capital of $5 million to finance land rehabilitation schemes in the New Territories.

Section 9A of the Agricultural Products (Marketing) Ordinance provided for the establishment of an Agricultural Products Scholarship Fund. This was launched in February 1978 and offers scholarships, grants and loans for the education and training of young people who are employed in, or who wish to enter, the agriculture and agricultural product marketing industries in Hong Kong. A laboratory was set up in December 1988 at the Cheung Sha Wan Market to monitor the level of pesticide residue on vegetables sold through the market. (11) Again, all these activities are implemented through the social partnership between government and farming interests represented by the FVMCS.

Corporatism in China's Agricultural Sector

Jiangshan City Bee-Rearing Integration Association (12)

Jiangshan City in Zhejiang Province is historically one of China's oldest bee-rearing centres. The Jiangshan City Bee-Rearing Integration Association was formed in 1998 and has 473 individual members, 55 group members including 7 bee enterprises, 5 processing factories, 7 bee products marketing bodies and 36 bee-rearing co-operatives and 193 bee-rearing federations. The bee-rearing co-operatives and federations have 1,146 bee-rearing households, accounting for more than half of the city's total. The various bee products produced by this Association account for 86 per cent of the city's entire production. The Association is registered with the Home Affairs Department.

The growth of the Association reflects the development of the market economy. In the past, bee-rearing was carried out by small household producers. This form of production encountered great difficulties in the application of technology, acquisition of market information and capital, reduction of costs, marketing and sales. To overcome these problems, the bee-rearing peasants, households and City Government decided to try to attain economies of scale by forming an association which aimed to integrate the production, processing and marketing of bee products into a unified process (chan, jia, xiao yitihua).

All people or groups engaged in the production, research, management, processing, marketing, etc., of the bee industry can join and withdraw from the Association on a voluntary basis (rushe ziyuan, tuishe ziyou). The highest organ of the Association is the general meeting of members which elects its general committee on a "one member, one vote" basis (yiren yipiao zhi). This committee consists of a chairman, vice-chairman and general secretary who manage the daily administration of the Association. The operating costs are mainly covered by membership fees. The Association is proud that it is run and managed by members, with the benefits shared by members (minban, minguan, minshouyi). It provides the following functions:

1. Social and economic services: These include the formation of a security system to protect the property of its members, for example, in the case of theft of bee-rearing boxes (which is quite common), the Association will ask its legal consultant to investigate and provide assistance. The Association also has a mutual aid fund which is pooled from among its members (20 yuan each) to assist members who suffer business losses due to natural calamities and the like. It also works with local credit institutions to offer loans to its members. It and the co-operatives provide corporate guarantees for loans. Another service is a publication entitled, "Jiangshan City Bee-Rearing Information" which provides regular market information about bee products. The Association also signs sales contracts collectively on behalf of its members with prospective customers, and co-ordinates the member enterprises and processing factories in building sales networks for individual bee-rearing households.

2. Technological promotion and assistance: The Association annually convenes a bee-rearing conference in the City during which university professors and other experts are invited to deliver technological seminars. Regular technological lectures and information are broadcast and published.

3. Setting of technical and trade standards: Technical standards in terms of the breeding of bees, disease control, honey quality, etc., are set and publicized throughout bee-rearing households. This helps to raise the quality and competitiveness of bee products.

4. Co-ordinating the activities of member enterprises, co-operatives and bee-rearing peasants: The aim is to form a unified line of production, processing and marketing of bee products between these different parties.

5. Acting as an intermediary between the Government and the industry: The Association articulates the interest of the peasants and communicates to the Government authorities the wishes of the industry, and also assists in planning and developing the industry. Indeed, most of the functions concerning the direction and management of the industry have been shifted from the City Government to the Association.

Shehong Cotton Association (13)

The economy of Shehong County in Sichuan Province is based largely on the farming of cotton. In 1995, upon the initiative of the cotton farmers, the Shehong Cotton Association was formed to promote the production of cotton. To join the Association, one has to pool in an amount of money as share capital. This varies from a minimum of 100 yuan to a maximum of 2,000 yuan for individual members, 8,000 yuan for the chairman of the general committee, 5,000 yuan for the vice-chairman, and 3,000 yuan for the committee members. As of April 2001, there were 151 individual member share-holders, most being technicians or peasant experts in cotton farming. However the biggest share-holder was the Cotton Institute which as a group share-holder had put in a stake of 200,000 yuan, accounting for 62 per cent of the total shares.

The Association's main purpose is to contract the farming of cotton within the townships and villages. In 2000, the areas contracted by the Association covered 70 per cent of the total cotton fields in the Shehong County. The Association's technician members and other well-trained members work in these fields. It supplies all the materials, including seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, tools, etc. The seeds and pesticides, which are of very high quality, are developed by the Association. The farming methods are derived from scientific research conducted by the Association. By streamlining farming processes, these methods can significantly reduce costs. The yield of cotton per acre has been known to increase by up to 25 per cent, compared to that in areas not contracted by the Association. The Government is willing to contract out cotton fields to the Association because it hopes to avail itself of its technological capabilities, increase yields and raise the quality of cotton, thereby improving peasant incomes.

The Association also tries to help cotton farmers at large by broadcasting new technologies about cotton farming. Lectures are conducted regularly, and pamphlets and cassette tapes about cotton farming techniques are delivered to farmers free of charge. Demonstration centres are also established throughout the county. In 1999, the Association sponsored 16 research and development projects delivered by the Ministry of Agriculture and other government departments. In the past, as an important national industry, cotton production was strictly controlled and directed by the County Government. With the increasing number of cotton fields contracted by the Association and the expansion of its business, the administration of cotton production has gradually been turned over to it. Thus, to a certain extent, the Association has replaced the Government with respect to cotton farming.

Xinchang Rabbit Industry Co-operative (14)

Xinchang County in Zhejiang Province has been engaged in the raising of rabbits for more than 40 years. From 1992, the market for rabbit hair, the main product in China, dwindled with the price falling sharply. The whole sector, which is dominated by family-based small producers, was in recession. In order to raise competitiveness and integrate the separate rabbit-raising households, the Xinchang Rabbit Industry Co-operative was formed with the support of the County Government in 1996. Initially, its membership included 67 rabbit-raising specialized households and the County's animal by-products company, rabbit institute and feed company. By August 2000, rabbit-raising households increased to 349. In 2001, the number of rabbits raised reached 700,000, and the output value of the rabbit products amounted to 60 million yuan. This accounted for 15 per cent of the country's total value of agricultural output.

Like the Shehong Cotton Association, to join the co-operative, each household must pool in an amount of money as share capital--each share equals 500 yuan--in addition to the membership fee of 100 yuan. When the co-operative makes a surplus, a proportion will go to the co-operative's development fund and production assistance fund. The balance will be divided among its members according to their trading value after paying the interests of the shares. When losses occur, the burden will be shouldered according to the shares possessed. This is called the principle of "sharing the benefit and shouldering the risk together" (liyi gongxiang, fengxian gongdan).

In 2001, of the nine committee members of the general committee, five were peasants. The three members of the supervisory committee which acts as the co-op's watchdog, were all peasants. Thus, the co-operative is, for the most part, run and managed by peasant members. Operating expenses are paid from members' share capital and some Government funding.

Farmers' Associations in Pingyuan County (15)

Pingyuan County in Shandong Province has a rural population of 380,000. In 1999, there were 930 farmers' associations there, including 346 chicken-raising associations, 120 cow-raising associations, 61 pig-raising associations, 15 fishery associations, 217 vegetable associations, 18 cotton associations, 68 fruit associations, 49 seed associations and 18 foodstuff associations. They had total assets of 400 million yuan and the total number of peasant households they served was over 90,000, accounting for 90 per cent of the peasant households in the whole country. The area they worked was over 700,000 acres which also accounted for 90 per cent of the arable land in the whole county. These associations operated eight wholesale markets for different types of agricultural produce.

Apart from the specialist associations, the rest are credit associations which absorb capital from the peasants and in turn provide credit to them. The total capital needed is about 400 million yuan, but the latter alone can provide 300 million yuan. In other words, the credit associations have, for the most part, solved the farmers' financing problems. The specialist associations will take five per cent of their surplus as risk funds which have accumulated to 1.8 million yuan in total. These funds are used to compensate member peasants for legitimate losses.

There are two important branches under the specialist associations: the Production and Marketing Departments. The Production Department is mainly responsible for the planning and provision of technical guidance in farming and rearing. It undertakes research for the development of new seeds and conducts seminars and training classes in collaboration with local universities and agricultural institutes in a bid to promote technical innovations among the peasants. In the past, these were the jobs of the County Government, but the results were not as good. The Marketing Department is responsible for the sales of agricultural produce. It is run by a sales team who knows the market well. There are 13,000 marketing staff in total, some of whom are employed from outside the County, working in the associations. According to one count, 80 per cent of the chicken eggs and 90 per cent of the vegetables in Pingyuan County are sold through these associations. They also provide pesticides and handle 80 per cent of all other agricultural supplies.

Distinguishing Characteristics of China's Agricultural Associations and Cooperatives

China's Ministry of Agriculture has frequently sent delegations of experts since the 1990s to western countries to conduct agricultural study tours. A particular focus has been the operation of agricultural associations and co-operative societies. Generally, the Chinese experts have spoken very highly about western agricultural associations. They point out that unlike those in Asia, notably those in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan, (16) the agricultural organizations of Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand, (17) are operated and managed by their own members and are free from government interference and control.

Coupled with the lessons learnt from the failure of the official-sponsored co-operative movement in China in the 1950s and 1960s during the collectivization period, the Chinese experts basically reject the Asian model in favour of the western autonomous model, concluding that the success of the new co-operative movement in China hinges on the degree of autonomy given to the peasants. They have, therefore, urged the Government to introduce similar institutions in rural China. They believe that only in this way can the associations truly represent farmers' interests and the objective of raising income and improving livelihoods be achieved.

Thus, the single most important reason for people operating the Jiangshan City Bee-Rearing Integration Association, Shehong Cotton Association, Xinchang Rabbit Industry Co-operative and the Farmers' Associations in Pingyuan County to get "organized" was to integrate the small scale family-based operations into the market economy. They were given official endorsement and established from the outset, strictly in accordance with the principles of voluntary participation and withdrawal, "one member, one vote", democratic management and independent operation as a legal person, in keeping with western practices. (18)

Several decades earlier, the Hong Kong peasant associations were modeled by British public servants on the agricultural associations and cooperatives of the west. Thus today, the Mainland Chinese and Hong Kong agricultural associations and cooperatives are remarkably similar in terms of their independence and autonomy, operation, organizational set up and method of leadership selection. The governing body is a general committee elected democratically at a general meeting of all members and both provide a wide variety of trade related services to members on a co-operative basis. By engaging in political exchange with state agencies over public policy outputs which combine interest representation and policy implementation, they are increasingly serving as agents of public policy. (19)

Conclusion

With the advent of the market economy in China, a number of studies have shown that corporate or quasi-corporate groups such as trade and industrial associations have experienced rapid growth and flourished in urban areas. (20) The emergence and spread of liberal-corporatism in the countryside represents yet another important development in the rise of civil society which is considered one of the pre-requisites for political democracy in contemporary China.

China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in November 2001 provided a new impetus for the development of co-operative organizations in the agricultural sector. The introduction of foreign competitors and foreign agricultural produce will further drive Chinese farmers to organize themselves through co-operation to raise their competitive power. On sheer economic grounds, the Chinese Government has no alternative but to be receptive to and tolerant of the rise of autonomous organizations and corporate groups in rural areas. After all, the localized and strictly economic nature of these sectoral and meso-level associations is not likely to jeopardize the power of the Chinese Communist Party in ruling the country.

This article is only a preliminary study based on documentary evidence drawn from agricultural literature published in China. Caution must be taken in examining Chinese authorities' assessments of the associations' independence. Some on-site fieldwork investigation is needed to testify the truth of the above findings. Nevertheless, for optimists, the Party's acquiescent attitude towards the development of such associations may hint that economic rationality has at last prevailed over political dogmatism in China.

(1) Jonathan Unger, "'Bridges': Private Business, the Chinese Government and the Rise of New Associations", China Quarterly, no. 147 (Sept. 1996): 795-819; Jonathan Unger and Anita Chan, "China, Corporatism, and the East Asian Model", Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs, no. 33 (Jan. 1995): 51.

(2) Zhang Sui and Ma Huiqin, Zhongguo sannong wenti yanjiu (A Study into the Agricultural Problems of China) (Beijing: Zhongguo caizheng jingji chubanshe, 2003), pp. 336-7 and 342.

(3) Philippe C. Schmitter, "Still the Century of Corporatism?", in Trends Toward Corporatist Intermediation, ed. Philippe C. Schmitter and G. Lehmbruch (London: Sage, 1979), p. 13.

(4) Alan Cawson, Corporatism and Political Theory (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1986), p. 38.

(5) See B. Young, "Does the American Dairy Industry Fit the Meso-corporatist Model?", Political Studies 38, no. 1 (Mar. 1990): 72-8; Wyn Grant, "Private Organizations As Agents of Public Policy: the Case of Milk Marketing in Britain", in Private Interest Government: Beyond Market and State, ed. W. Streeck and Philippe C. Schmitter (London: Sage, 1985); Wyn Grant, Government and Industry: A Comparative Analysis of the US, Canada and the UK (Hants: Edward Elgar, 1989), pp. 174-90; M. M. Atkinson and W. D. Coleman, "Corporatism and Industrial Policy", in Organized Interests and the State: Studies in Meso-Corporatism, ed. Alan Cawson (London: Sage, 1985), pp. 22-44.

(6) Cawson, Corporatism and Political Theory, p. 110.

(7) See Co-operative Movement in the Colonial Departments, Hong Kong Record Series, no. 276, Deposit & Series no. 5/2, Mar.-Apr. 1946.

(8) For details, see Hong Kong Government, Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, A General Review of Fishermen's Co-operatives in Hong Kong, Fisheries Occasional Paper, no. 10, May 1976.

(9) Hong Kong Government, Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Annual Departmental Report, 1987/8.

(10) Hong Kong Fish Marketing Organization, Annual Report, 1988/9.

(11) Hong Kong Vegetable Marketing Organization, Annual Report, 1988/9.

(12) Guo Hongdong, "Chongfen fahui nongchanpin hangye xiehui de zuoyong, cujin nongye chanyehua jingying: Zhejiangsheng Jiangshanshi yangfeng chanyehua xiehui de shijian yu qishi" (To Make Use of the Agricultural Products and Trade Associations to Promote the Integration of Agriculture: The Practice and Revelation of the Jiangshan City Bee-Rearing Integration Association of Zhejiang Province), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (May 2002): 21-6.

(13) Zhang Xiaoshan et al., "Sichuan Shehong mianhua xiehui de anli yanjiu" (Coordinating the Existing Institutions and Newly Established Farmers' Organizations While Forwarding Farmers' Co-operatives: A Case Study of the Sichuan Shehong Cotton Association), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 2001): 17-23.

(14) Guo Hongdong and Huang Zuhui, "Xinchang tuye hezuoshe de shijian yu qishi" (Promoting Integration of Agriculture with Other Relevant Industries by the Way of Establishing Co-operatives as a Leading Power: The Practice and Revelation of the Xinchang Rabbit Industry Co-operative), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 2001): 24-8.

(15) Zhang Huilu, "Shandongsheng Pingyuenxian nongmin hezuo xiehui de shijian yu tansuo" (The Experiments and Experiences of Developing Farmers' Co-operatives in Pingyuan County, Shandong Province), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 1999): 20-4.

(16) See Li Xiangang and Shi Minjun, "Riben nongxie de lishi gongxian, cunzai wenti ji fazhan qushi" (Historic Contribution, Current Problems and Development Trends of Farmers' Associations in Japan), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Mar. 2001): 72-6; Yuan Peng, "Taiwan nongye hezuoshe de lishi yanjin yu fazhan xianzhuang" (The Evolution and Status Quo of Agricultural Co-operatives in Taiwan), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 1999): 63-9; Hong Minrong, "Xiaonong jingying jiegou yu Taiwan de nongye fazhan" (The Structure and Performance of Small Scale Farms and Agricultural Development in Taiwan), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 1999): 70-5.

(17) See Investigation Team from Soft Science Committee of Ministry of Agriculture, "Ouzhou nongmin duozhong xingshi de lianhe yu hezuo zuzhi: Fa, De, He sanguo de kaocha yu qishi" (Various Patterns of Associations and Co-operatives of European Farmers: The Study and Revelation of the Three Countries: France, Germany and the Netherlands), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Apr. 1999): 76-80; Investigation Group into Agriculture from Ministry of Agriculture, "Ziyuan xiaoguo weishenme neng chengwei nongchanpin daiguo: Helan nongye kaocha baogao" (Why Could Netherlands Become a Powerful Agricultural Exporter from a Country Short of Natural Resources?: An Investigation Report into the Agriculture of the Netherlands) Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (June 1999): 74-8; Investigation Team from the Ministry of Agriculture of China, "Peiyu you jingzhengli de nongye chanye tixi: Guanyu Meiguo nongye de guancha yu sikao" (Nourishing Industrial System of Agriculture with Competitiveness : An Observation and Study into the American Agriculture), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Aug. 2001): 72-80; Delegation on Agriculture from China, "Biangezhong de Aodailiya, Xinxilan nongye" (Some New Changes in Agriculture of Australia and New Zealand), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Aug. 2000): 70-4; Lin Shengxuan and Cai Haiou, "Aodailiya yangmao hezuo zuzhi de jingyan jiqi qishi" (The Experiences and Enlightenment of Australian Co-operative Organisations for Wool), Zhongguo nongcun jingji (Chinese Rural Economy) (Feb. 1999): 75-80.

(18) Zhang Sui and Ma Huiqin, Zhongguo sannong wenti yanjiu, pp. 284-344.

(19) Wyn Grant, Business and Politics in Britain (London: Macmillan, 1987), p. 190.

(20) See for example, Unger, "'Bridges': Private Business, the Chinese Government and the Rise of New Associations", pp. 795-819; Unger and Chan, "China, Corporatism, and the East Asian Model", p. 51; Gordon White, "Prospects for Civil Society in China: A Case Study of Xiaoshan City", Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs, no. 29 (Jan. 1993): 63-87; Christopher Earle Nevitt, "Private Business Associations in China: Evidence of Civil Society or Local State Power?", China Journal, no. 36 (July 1996): 25-43.

Wong Cham Li (chamliwong@yahoo.com.hk) is a lecturer in Public Administration in the Faculty of Management and Administration at the Macau University of Science and Technology. He earned his PhD in Public Administration from the University of Hong Kong. His research interests include para-government organizations, public enterprises and the civil service.
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