Téma: The PRC successfully reformed. Why not the Soviet Union?

Hello everyone.

I'll note my knowledge regarding the two countries mentioned is fairly slim, so feel free to correct me. Anyway, from what I've read, after the death of Mao a number of reforms were instituted in the PRC that helped revitalize the economy, and they transitioned from one of central planning to the more mixed economy they have today. In the long run it seems to have done the nation a great deal of good.

While I'm aware that the Soviet Union did attempt reforms later (such as Perestroika) it seems like it was too little, too late. An attempted coup failed and the Soviet Union collapsed. This is all a gross simplification, but do I at least understand the gist?

My question really boils down to the subject line: what is it that allowed China to successfully reform and thrive, while when the Soviet Union attempted to do so, it fell apart and dissolved? Did China benefit by doing so much sooner? Did their leadership have more of a desire to do so?

I didn't find the right solution from the internet.
References :
http://historum.com/general-history/123 … union.html

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