Up until the last six or seven years, very little attention has been paid in the West to the tax system of the People's Republic of China ("PRC" or "China"). This is understandable since, in the immediate post-liberation years, many countries in the Western Hemisphere tried hard to pretend that the PRC did not exist at all. Following its break with the Soviet Union in 1960, China adhered firmly to a policy of self-reliance. China's opening to the West, in economic terms, did not really begin until approximately 1978. Given the type of economic system which had evolved in China before that date, it was also assumed, although not entirely accurately, there could be little scope for a tax system of any type.
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