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Economic Change: Agricultural Land, Value Added in Agriculture and Export of Goods and Services

Source: World Bank, Online Database, Downloaded: 14 January 2009

While more and more land is used for agriculture in China, the value added to the GDP by farmers is shrinking substantially. In the late 1960s farmers produced some 40% of GDP with 40% of the land; today, farmers use 60% of the land area and produce about 10% of the GDP. During only three decades China has transformed itself from a country based, to a large extent, on subsistence farming into a modern economy where 90% of the value added is generated in industry and services.

This dramatic economic change in China was the consequence of fundamental economic reforms initiated by Deng Xiaoping in 1978, which abandoned the state-run command-and-control economy of Mao's time and created market- and export-oriented manufacturing and services sectors. In 2005, exports of goods and services contributed some 40% to China's GDP - up from less than 5% in the mid-seventies before the reforms.

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This data section was updated on 18 December 2011

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Copyright 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 by Gerhard K. Heilig. All rights reserved. - 18 April 2012