China's Economic Rise: History, Trends, Challenges, and Implications for the United States [June 14, 2015] [open pdf - 739KB]
"Prior to the initiation of economic reforms and trade liberalization 35 years ago, China maintained policies that kept the economy very poor, stagnant, centrally controlled, vastly inefficient, and relatively isolated from the global economy. Since opening up to foreign trade and investment and implementing free market reforms in 1979, China has been among the world's fastest-growing economies, with real annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaging nearly 10% through 2014. In recent years, China has emerged as a major global economic power. It is now the world's largest: economy (on a purchasing power parity basis), manufacturer, merchandise trader, and holder of foreign exchange reserves."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33534