Foreign investors could be forgiven bewilderment at the range of explanations being put forward for the current wave of crackdowns on private businesses in China. Fortunately, most analysis appears to be coalescing into two schools of thought. They contend that what is happening is either the manifestation of Machiavellian intrigue at the top of the Party, or a simpler case of well-crafted bureaucratic actions poorly communicated.
Superior analyses combine the two approaches to suggest that the crackdowns might actually be necessary and could indeed be better presented, but they would not be happening unless they also strengthened the hand of President Xi Jinping against opponents of his agenda – and his drive for a third term.
Better yet would be to step back from the fray and consider bigger, longer-term forces shaping the current bureaucratic and political imperatives.Continue reading Conservative snowball gathers speed