fredag 22. oktober 2021

Tightening up: A wave of new legal restrictions and bans

In what many observers have termed a “regulatory crackdown,” a wave of new legal restrictions and bans on business, technology, and entertainment has broken across China over the past several months, with what appears to be escalating velocity and force. Most recently, new rules have hit companies involved in everything from how Chinese consumers can borrow, invest, and spend their money to how they educate their children, travel around their cities, and shop for insurance, and even what they watch on TV. Some of these new rules have been in the making for some time, some seem designed to address quite divergent government goals, but their rapid enactment has led many analysts—including those connected to the Chinese state—to view them as part of a single campaign.

What is the best way to understand the connections among these new strictures? How do they relate to Xi Jinping’s leadership, how should they be understood to relate to governance goals in China more broadly, and to what extent will they succeed in achieving their intended ends?