Share this on Twitter Share this on Facebook Share this on LinkedIn Share this on Sina Weibo Share this on Wechat Share this on LinkedIn China’s high-speed rail system makes the 14-hour drive from Beijing to Shanghai just a five-hour trip.Credit: The U.S. Army Band, Creative Commons In a familiar ritual for China watchers, the ruling Chinese Communist Party just held a high-level meeting to promulgate the country’s economic plan for the next five years, along with a series of aspirational goals for the next 15 years. In the early reform period in the 1980s, such meetings were the obsession of the week for a small group of China specialists working outside of China. Today, however, the content of the economic plans for the second largest economy — and a rising superpower — is of concern to the entire world. Among the themes that emerged from the recent meeting, three stood out: a strong reaffirmation of China’s Leninist dictatorship; a drive to improve domestic demand; and an accelerated push in the race for advanced technology. While the aim of bolstering Chinese demand and China’s push to develop advanced science and technology would, on their own, bring great benefits to the world, China’s political system will likely shape these agendas in a Subscribe or log in to read the rest.