How Far Was Chinese Industry Transformed in the Years 1949 to 1962

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Within the years 1949-1962, Mao implemented two “Five Year Plans,” both of which altered the industrial status of China. These industrial reforms focused specifically on developing China’s best assets for instance coal and textile manufacturing. They also targeted other main industries as well, such as transport and steel. The events that took place during this period undoubtedly resulted in various adjustments to Chinese industry. However, whether or not China’s industry experienced a process of profound and radical change between 1949 and 1962 is a debatable topic, which can be argued either way. Firstly, it can be argued that the growth of manufactured goods transformed Chinese industry during the 1950s. The main aim of The First Five-Year Plan, which occurred between 1952-1956, was to industrialize china and concentrated on developing the growth of heavy industries such as coal, steel and iron. These materials were vital to build roads and other means of transportation. To a certain extent, the industry of China had been transformed within this period, particularly due to the advancement of these heavy industries. For instance, 88.8% of state capital investment in industry went towards the developing of these heavy industries and as a result, coal’s production raised from 66 million to 130 million and production of steel elevated from 1.31 million to 4.48 million by 1957. Moreover, Maurice Meisner explains how ‘Chinese industrial production grew more rapidly than Russian industry during the first Soviet Five Year Plan.’ Therefore, due to the large increase in production of these essential materials one could argue that Chinese industry experienced a radical change between 1949 and 1962, even greater than Russia’s. On the other hand, it can be debated that China did not experience a significant transformation in terms of their industry around the time of the

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