Ex-US Treasury chief says urbanization threatened
Henry Paulson, former US Treasury secretary under President George W. Bush, said that the global economy and environment depend on the success of China’s urbanization program, which he said is threatened by the country’s stressed financial system and “inefficient” building sprees.
China’s growth in the next two decades depends on “how it urbanizes sustainably” so that the country can transition from growth built off the backs of exports and capital-intensive investments to one that is environmentally-friendly and “people-centered,” wrote Paulson in a piece for the website of CNN’s “Money’’ section that was published Monday.
China needs to “urbanize strategically and sustainably, not just rapidly,” he wrote. “Simply packing more people into cities and building infrastructure will not automatically raise living standards for the next 300 million and will only worsen pollution, congestion, and inefficiency.”
Interconnected problems such as job creation and a normalized labor market with legal migrants need to be solved because the existing growth model has “frayed,” he said.