GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2003, Vol. 22 ›› Issue (3): 261-271.doi: 10.11821/yj2003030001

• Earth Surface Processes •     Next Articles

New factors and new patterns of regional development in China

LU Da dao   

  1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2002-12-12 Revised:2003-03-22 Online:2003-06-15 Published:2003-06-15


Since the beginning of the 1990s, national economy of China has entered an important transformation period. Meanwhile, a series of changes have taken place within China. This paper provides the generalization of the main contents and views of "Regional Development Report of China, 2002" edited by LU Da dao, et al. After explaining the influence of the strategic structural adjustment of national economy in regional aspect, it argues that since the early 1990s, influence of traditional factors, such as mineral resources, water resources and transportation, has dropped gradually. Economic globalization not only has accelerated the development of national economy, but also has greatly changed the patterns of regional development. With information increasingly becoming an important production factor and location factor, the development of information based industries has impelled the regional economic disparity of China. Apart from these, science and technology, ecological environment and regional innovation system are becoming new factors which have greatly influenced regional development. Under the comprehensive function of the above mentioned factors, new economic patterns have emerged in China, they can be summarized as follows. First, regional economic gap has expanded in all aspects. Both regional and zonal differentiation in industrialization level has been more obvious in recent years. As several developed regions have entered the middle stage of industrialization, the hinterland of China, on the whole, is still at the initial stage of industrialization. Furthermore, economic and technological gradients have come into being within national scale. Second, spatial structure of industries, especially the manufacturing industries, which has come into being under planned economic system in the past decades, has greatly shifted in China. For example, basic industries as raw materials industries have further agglomerated to the coastal regions of China; energy industries especially power industry have shifted to the Western China; and the fast development of characteristic agriculture and high efficient agricultural production and high quality agricultural production has formed in several new areas for specific agricultural productions. However, with the new patterns in regional development, there are serious inclinations in regional development which should gain much concern:most regions should pay more attention to the development of basic industries and its modernization; new and high tech industries are not suitable to develop on a large scale; and environmental state of several regions with a high rate of economic growth has seriously worsened.

Key words: regional development, new factor, new pattern

  • F129.9