Posts tagged ‘18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China’

03/02/2015

China’s Antigraft Drive Turns to Financial Sector – China Real Time Report – WSJ

President Xi Jinping’s two-year antigraft campaign is hitting China’s vast financial sector, according to officials with knowledge of the matter, after investigators began questioning a senior executive at a major bank over his political ties and a board member at a second lender regarding possible corruption. As the WSJ’s Lingling Wei reports:

Mao Xiaofeng, until recently a rising star at China Minsheng Banking Corp. , resigned as president for “personal reasons,” Minsheng said on Saturday. Chinese anticorruption officials are questioning Mr. Mao over his ties to a former top Chinese Communist Party official, Ling Jihua, who is himself being investigated by graft inspectors, according to an official at one of China’s financial regulatory agencies.

And late Monday nightBank of Beijing Co. said that Lu Haijun, a board member, is being investigated over “possible serious violations” of party discipline—a euphemism for corruption among Chinese officials. A statement the bank posted on the Shanghai Stock Exchange said its operations aren’t affected by the probe.

via China’s Antigraft Drive Turns to Financial Sector – China Real Time Report – WSJ.

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01/12/2012

* Jiu San Society holds national congress

Did you know that there are eight non-Communists political parties allowed in China? See – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_parties_in_the_People%27s_Republic_of_China#The_parties

Xinhua: “The Jiu San Society, one of China’s eight non-Communist political parties, opened its 10th national congress in Beijing on Friday.

The congress will hear and deliberate on a work report by the society’s 12th central committee, discuss and approve a draft amendment to the Jiu San Society’s Constitution, and elect the party’s 13th central committee.

Li Keqiang, China’s vice premier and a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, met with delegates to the congress and delivered a congratulatory speech on behalf of the CPC Central Committee.

Li said in the speech that the Jiu San Society carried the fine tradition of promoting patriotism, democracy and science.

“It embarked on a historic road of working with the CPC side by side and standing together with the CPC regardless of situation, by pursuing democracy and promoting science, at the beginning of the society’s formation,” according to the vice premier.

During the last five years, China has courageously advanced along the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, stood the test of various difficulties and risks, won new victories in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and achieved major progress in the cause of a united front and multi-party cooperation under the CPC leadership, Li said.

He continued that the society brought to full play its own features and advantages and made contributions to socialist economic, political, cultural, social and ecological construction during the last five years.

The cause of building a moderately prosperous society and deepening reform and opening up in all respects needs concerted efforts of the Chinese people, including the united front members, Li said.

The CPC will unswervingly adhere to the political development road of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and the guiding principle of “long-term coexistence, mutual supervision, sincere treatment with each other and the sharing of weal and woe,” he vowed.

It will strengthen cooperation with non-Communist parties and personages without party affiliation and further consolidate and develop “the most extensive patriotic united front,” delegates of the Jiu San Society’s congress were told.

Li said he hoped the society will lead its members to carry on its fine tradition, consolidate its ideological basis, deepen political transition and enhance self-improvement in order to make new contributions.

The vice premier also expressed hope that the society will bring its knowledge-intensive advantage to full play and offer advices accordingly.

Han Qide, executive chairman of the presidium of the Jiu San Society’s 10th national congress, delivered a work report at the congress on behalf of the society’s 12th central committee.

At the end of 1944, a number of progressive scholars organized the Forum on Democracy and Science, to strive for victory in the Anti-Japanese War and political democracy, and to develop the anti-imperialist and patriotic spirit of the May 4 Movement of 1919.

In commemoration of the victory in the Chinese People’s War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression and in the world anti-Fascist war, on Sept. 3, 1945, it adopted the name Jiu San Society (“Jiu San” means Sept. 3 in Chinese).

On May 4, 1946, the Jiu San Society was formally founded in Chongqing.

By the end of June this year, the society had set up more than 5,200 grass-roots organizations with more than 132,000 members. Most of the members are senior and leading intellectuals in the fields of science and technology.”

via Jiu San Society holds national congress – Xinhua | English.news.cn.

12/11/2012

* New Chinese leaders in transition

This is a most insightful article about the new cohort of Chinese leaders. Unlike any other country where national leaders come from all ages and backgrounds, the new Chinese leadership share more in common between them than there are differences. It will give our readers a better understanding of what is about to come once the leadership transition is complete next Spring.

Xinhua: “More than 2,200 delegates to the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) began on Sunday to deliberate a proposed name-list of nominees for the candidates for the Party’s new leadership.

 

Within days, they will elect members and alternate members of the 18th CPC Central Committee, the leading body of the world’s largest ruling party.

China’s leadership transition, which began last year from township level, will surely determine the future of the world’s second largest economy, and influence the world.

A new standing committee of the CPC Beijing municipal committee was elected on July 3, marking the completion of the leadership change at the provincial level.

Since the beginning of the year, main leaders of some central departments and centrally-administered enterprises have been replaced. The seventh plenum of the 17th CPC Central Committee early this month appointed two vice chairmen of the CPC Central Military Commission.

The local leadership transition and central-level reshuffle are preparations for the leadership transition at the 18th Party congress, Dai Yanjun, a scholar on Party building with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, said.

From central to local levels, the new army of CPC officials bear the distinctive characteristics and personal styles and they are to lead China’s new round of reform and development, said Dai.

GROWING UP UNDER RED FLAG

Among the delegates to the 18th Party congress, a number of CPC officials born in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, were under the spotlight.

Dai said they grew up in a totally different historic and social environment from their predecessors, which will, to a great extent, lead to a different administration concept and approach.

Unlike the founding fathers of the People’s Republic of China and previous generations of leading officials who grew up in wartime, the new leadership, mostly born around the founding of New China, grew up in peacetime.

This allowed them to have a complete and systematic education of the mainstream socialist ideology, and shaped their worldview and value orientation.

In their youth, they underwent severe tests during the Great Leap Forward in 1958 and “three years of natural disasters” (1959-1961). The turbulent Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) was a hard time for them. Some, in their teens, were forced to live and work in the poorest villages after their parents were persecuted.

“In short, they all went through starvation and had the experience of working hard in rural areas,” said Dai. “They are victims of the Cultural Revolution. They witnessed the ups and downs of China’s development and the success of the national rejuvenation. They are firm supporters of reform and opening up.”

The leading officials born after 1950 and with experiences as “educated youth” are an idealistic and realistic group. They are closely watched by foreigners who are looking into China’s future, said Cheng Li, director of research and a senior fellow at the John L. Thornton China Center of the Brookings Institution.

FULL UNDERSTANDING OF NATIONAL CONDITIONS

Elites have become the backbone of the CPC and the country. The people elected into the top leadership at the 18th Party congress will showcase the Party’s governing ideals and value orientation in the future, said Dai.

A notable feature of the leading officials born after the founding of New China, no matter what families they are from, is that they all have grassroots working experiences. They had worked with ordinary farmers, workers and soldiers, and been promoted step by step.

Such experiences are valuable, said Dai. This gives them a full understanding of the society and country, so that they will address state issues from the viewpoint of common people and focus more on improving people’s livelihood.

Chinese leader Hu Jintao said, at the 90th founding anniversary of the CPC last year, that alienation from the people poses the greatest risk to the Party after it has gained political power.

At the ongoing Party congress, Hu stressed efforts to “put people first, exercise governance for the people and always maintain close ties with them.”

China is undergoing rapid social transformation and many thorny problems emerged first at grassroots levels.

The leading officials were working at grassroots levels when China launched the reform and opening-up drive and profound changes took place in social interests and structure, Dai said.

They met with and handled quite a lot of new problems, Dai said. “Such working experiences enable them to know what the people need most. This is an ability that cannot be learned from books and also their big advantage.”

PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND AND INTERNATIONAL VISION

Another feature of the leading officials is that they have abundant learning experiences and a sound professional background.

Many of them went to the best colleges in China after the end of the Cultural Revolution, and some others took in-service educational programs and managed to acquire master and doctorate degrees. Well-educated officials are nowadays common in central and local authorities.

With the academic degrees and professional background, they meet better the requirements of the current economic and social development, Dai said.

A feature of their academic backgrounds is that more people studied humanities and social science, and some of them majored in political science, law and management, giving them confidence in pushing forward reform in all respects, Cheng Li said.

Unlike the previous generations who studied in the Soviet Union, many of the leading officials were sent or chose to study in the United States and developed European countries, gaining a broad international vision.

Xie Chuntao, a professor with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, said that the leading officials are not rigid or conservative, and they will guarantee the adherence to reform and opening up and the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics.

“They participated in, witnessed and benefitted from reform and opening up, and know what was it like before, so none of them will look back,” said Xie.

09/11/2012

# Positive effects of Chinese tea?

This photo is from the current 18th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. Obviously it was taken during one of the breaks. No one would dare talk or yawn if a VIP speaker was on the podium. But note, everyone is drinking Chinese tea; not water, not beer, or Coca Cola. Does that explain why the Chinese leadership are relatively relaxed and calm and so effective?

Delegates sit at the stage before the opening ceremony of 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China

06/11/2012

* Understanding China’s 18th Communist Party Congress

Reuters: “China’s ruling Communist Party opens its 18th Congress on Thursday, a complicated political coronation that will install the country’s fifth generation of leaders.

Here is how the process works and some pointers to what is at stake in this congress.

AGENDA

– The five-yearly congress elects about 370 full and alternate members of the party’s elite Central Committee in a session lasting about one week, drawing from a pre-selected pool of candidates expected to be only slightly larger than 370.

– The new Central Committee’s first session, held the day after the congress ends, then selects some two dozen members of the decision-making Politburo, again drawing from a list of candidates already selected by the party’s leadership over months of political jockeying.

– The new Politburo Standing Committee, the party’s top echelon of power which currently has nine members, will then be unveiled after the one-day Central Committee plenum ends. It is widely expected to be shrunk to seven, facilitating decision-making needed to push through key reforms.

– A series of other appointments will also be made over the congress period, and in some cases before it. These include provincial party chiefs and governors and heads of some state-owned enterprises.

– Vice President Xi Jinping is set to take over as party general secretary from President Hu Jintao at the end of the congress. Xi then takes over as head of state in March at the annual full meeting of parliament.

One uncertainty is whether Hu will also give up his job as military chief. His predecessor, Jiang Zemin, stayed on in that role for two years after stepping down as party chief.

POLICIES

– Hu will give a keynote report to the opening session of the congress, appraising the meeting of the party’s work over the past five years and mapping out challenges ahead for the next five years. Details of the speech remain a closely guarded secret ahead of time.

– The catchphrase in state media and among academics ahead of the congress has been “reform”. China experts say that unless the new leadership pushes through stalled reforms, the nation risks economic malaise, deepening unrest and ultimately even a crisis that could shake the party’s grip on power.

– Advocates of reform are pressing Xi to cut back the privileges of state-owned firms, make it easier for rural migrants to settle permanently in cities, fix a fiscal system that encourages local governments to live off land expropriations and, above all, tether the powers of a state that they say risks suffocating growth and fanning discontent.

– There may also perhaps be cautious efforts to answer calls for more political reforms, though nobody seriously expects a move towards full democracy.

The party may introduce experimental measures to broaden inner-party democracy – in other words, encouraging greater debate within the party – but stability remains a top concern and one-party rule will be safeguarded.”

via Factbox: Understanding China’s 18th Communist Party Congress | Reuters.

17/09/2012

* China past and present: review

UK Telegraph: “China past and present: review

By Rana Mitter7:00AM BST 10 Sep 2012Comment

Two books on China explain why the country’s rise to superpower status is still far from inevitable

A vision of the Chinese future in a 1982 propaganda posterA vision of the Chinese future in a 1982 propaganda poster Photo: Alamy

Some time this autumn, the Chinese Communist Party will announce the date of the 18th Party Congress. Among the Party’s priorities will be two major issues: the need to project Chinese power more widely in the world, and the consolidation of a system of welfare that will prevent the country’s social discontent from spilling over into outright rebellion. These themes are at the centre of these two important books which, taken together, illustrate why the rise of China is far from inexorable.

Odd Arne Westad’s Restless Empire has two main purposes. The first is to provide an overview of China’s engagement with the world over the past three centuries. Westad starts with an important piece of myth-busting, arguing strongly against the idea that China has been an inward-looking society closed to the rest of the world. Whether it was the trade in silks and porcelains that made China part of a global trading network during the Ming and Qing dynasties that lasted from the 14th century to the 20th, or the forced engagement with the West that came with imperialism, China has always been connected with the wider world. Westad is particularly acute on the Cold War period, using impressive documentation to argue that China’s relationship to the rest of East Asia was not just communist, but Confucian in the ties that Mao nurtured with his ideological “younger brothers” such as Kim Il-sung and Ho Chi Minh (even if the family quickly became dysfunctional).

The second aim emerges in the last two chapters, which concern the foreign policy crises facing China today. Westad firmly rejects the received wisdom that China is set to become a global superpower, dominating policy on everything from international intervention to energy resources. Despite its rhetoric, China has in practice been almost entirely passive or reactive in the past few decades. China shows pleasure in being treated as a global player, but shows little sign of knowing what to do with that power other than criticising the United States. “China has to learn,” he says drily, “that sticking it in the eye of the world’s hyperpower may bring short-term gratification, but it does not amount to a grand strategy in international politics.”

Some of the reasons that China’s leadership may be distracted from visions of world domination are made clear in Gerard Lemos’s The End of the Chinese Dream. Lemos spent four years working in Chongqing, the city that has become notorious for the Bo Xilai murder scandal, but his account is of a less lurid but equally troubling failing in Chinese government. He examines the model of welfarist authoritarianism with which the Chinese Communist Party is attempting to gain the “performance legitimacy” that might keep it in power, and finds it seriously wanting. When the Maoist “iron rice bowl” of guaranteed employment, pensions and health care broke down as China privatised its economy in the Nineties, millions of urban and rural Chinese found themselves left behind as others got rich. Figures tell part of the story: food inflation ran at over 18 per cent in 2008, and some analysts expect that health care costs will rise by 11 per cent annually into the middle of the next decade. But the participants in the surveys that Lemos organised add human voices to the statistics: one among the hundreds he records is the 39-year-old woman who declares “Losing my job [changed my life]. I have no money to see the doctor.” She tells Lemos that she fears she’ll be unable to find “the education fee for my children’s education”. The “Chinese dream” of a middle-class existence with a flat, car, and high-quality education for the next generation has only become a reality in the last decade or two. Now it looks as if it may be slipping out of the grasp of millions even before they have had a chance to aspire to it.

Both writers make poignantly clear the obstacles to China becoming a global leader. At bottom, China does not have a vision of what a Chinese-led world would look like. Nor does its domestic political model of party-led authoritarianism export well to the rest of the world. African and Latin American nations may welcome Chinese investment and on occasion find it expedient to use the threat of Beijing to squeeze concessions from Washington. But however shaky these countries’ engagement with democratisation, they do not seriously tout the “Chinese model” as an alternative, because it is clear that China has not solved its most pressing problems: a demographic crisis exacerbated by the one-child policy, a creaking welfare system, and slowing growth.”

via China past and present: review – Telegraph.

See also:

Law of Unintended Consequences

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