May 27, 2011 - Rome Reports interview with Professor Raquel Vaz-Pinto

May 22, 2011. ( China's economy has taken 250 million people out of poverty. The business side has been a complete success, but the country is paying a heavy price when it comes to civil liberties and religious freedom.

Dr. Raquel Vaz-Pinto, Catholic University of Portugal
“They know they have an enormous amount of problems with the country which have been generated by economic growth. So you have this cycle, that I don't think the party will be able to maintain for a long time.”

The Acton Institute in Rome analyzed Asia's role in the 21st century. China's situation took the center stage, as experts looked into how its cultural and religious differences will play out in a global economy. Experts say, despite their troubled history, the Church and the government will have to find common ground.

Dr. Raquel Vaz-Pinto, Catholic University of Portugal
“This is where the Church or other religious organizations can play a role in asking for a more responsible or a more socially responsible economic growth.”

Dr. Vaz-Pinto says for years, the Communist party slogan was “Don't ask questions, just get rich.” But now, millions are starting to ask questions.

Dr. Raquel Vaz-Pinto, Catholic University of Portugal
“People are becoming, now that they are allowed to, people are becoming more religious and they are looking at this process of economic growth trying to benefit from it, but at the same time trying to give back a bit to their families and societies.”

For China to maintain its power, experts say the country will have to change its one child policy. It will also have to grant more civil liberties, including freedom of religion.

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