China to Restore Socialist Camp

Communists Fight for Communism in Spite of Changes in Concept of Communism
Xi Jinping is a communist. The concept of communism and the way to attain communism have to change along with the changes of times, but Xi remains unchanged as a communist that has sworn to fight for communism all his life.

He wants not only himself but also all the CCP members to fight for communism all their lives as they have sworn to. Therefore, the theme of his report to 19th CCP Congress starts with “Remain true to our original aspiration and keep our mission firmly in mind”. The original aspiration is to fight for communism all one’s life in the oath each and every CCP member takes when he/she joins CCP.

However, the concept of communism has changed along with the times. For Marx fighting for communism was to resolve the principal contradiction of capitalism that production is carried out for the public but the means of production are owned privately. It means a violent revolution to turn private ownership of means of production (enterprises) into public ownership and capitalist free economy into planned economy.

However, monolithic public ownership and planned economy have been proved inefficient by Socialist camp and China’s experience. Socialism with Chinese characteristics encourages both state-owned (with public ownership) and private enterprises (with private ownership).

The concept of communism has changed, but resolving the principal contradiction of the society remains communists’ task. For China now the principal contradiction is not that of capitalism that Marx wanted to resolve. Xi Jinping has made clear in Xi Jinping Though on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era that the principal contradiction now is that between China’s unbalanced and inadequate development and the people’s ever-growing needs for a better life.

Socialism Revives with Enormous Vigor like Phoenix after Being Burnt by Fire
When the Soviet Union collapsed, most socialist countries in Socialist Camp have switched to Western capitalism with the exception of only China, Vietnam, North Korea and Cuba. At that time, China was poor and backward while the other 3 were not only poor and backward but also small and weak. The West believed at that time that socialism and communists had finished in the world. China’s reform and opening-up made the West believe that China was pursuing Western capitalism. They have been waiting for China’s total Westernization, i.e. China’s transformation into a Western multi-party democracy. That is what the West regards as China’s political reform. China’s establishment of the rule of law, development of mass line democracy for people to supervise officials, abolition of re-education-through-labor system, reform of letters and calls system are all not regarded by the West as political reforms. Only the switch to multi-party democracy is regarded as political reform.

However, China has not and will not conduct that switch. It has overcome orthodox socialism and creatively developed its own special socialism with Chinese characteristics. At first as China kept a low profile, it had not attracted West’s attention. However, when the US found China’s continuous rise may threaten its world leadership, former US President Obama began his pivot to Asia to contain China.

China Encircled by Hostile Western Democracies
As Japan stopped rise after three decades of tremendous economic growth, people believed that China would also did so. However, China’s socialism has proved superior to Western democracies in achieving economic and technological progress. It has enabled China to surpass Japan and become the second largest economy in the world. Judging by China’s economic growth rate, China might surpass the US to become the largest economy in the world in a decade or so.

That has caused the US to fall into Thucydides trap and launch a trade war to stop China’s rise. It also scared other Western democracies. Will China’s rise mean the recovery of socialism to replace their capitalist systems, they wonder. EU began to regard China as a systemic rival while Japan, Australia and Canada are all politically and ideologically hostile to China though they all want to benefit by their economic, especially trade relations with China.

The Chinese model of one-party democracy proves superior to Western multi-party democracy. Its attractive impact on developing countries has roused Western democracies’ greatest concerns. Moreover, they even fear that China may cause their political system to collapse. That is why EU regards China as a systemic rival. However, Chinese leader has made very clear that China has no intention to export its model. In addition, facts have proved that China has never interfered in other countries’ internal affairs. Still their fear is natural. Since it is natural for them to export their system through regime change by whatever means including military ones why shall China not export its system?

Cold War has ended but Cold War mindset remains. Due to that mindset, Western democracies believe like the Soviet Union, China, when strong, will conduct an international revolution to change their system.

However, China’s own and Soviet experience has proved that it is impossible to export social system, even by force. The Soviet Union may force Eastern European countries to accept socialism but as soon as Soviet military pressure had been lifted after the collapse of the Soviet Union, all those countries switched to Western capitalism. Western experience of regime changes brought about by the West by military and other means have also proved that. US invasion of Iraq, West’s attack at Libya, etc. have succeeded in bringing about regime changes but failed to turn those countries into Western-style democracies.

Simply, Chinese is not so stupid as to pursue world revolution, which will hinder instead of facilitate China resolving its principal contradiction through balanced and adequate development to satisfy people’s ever-growing needs for a better life.

The Need and Potential to Restore the Socialist Camp
Therefore, China has to restore the socialist camp to show to the world that China’s socialism means pursuit of economic development to raise people’s living standards instead of violent international revolution. By so doing, China will break West’s encirclement of China and make its model popular in the world.

Xi is a Chinese President quite different from his predecessors. He is much more active than them in conducting diplomacy that he can be regarded as China’s major diplomat.

Why has he been so busy a diplomat?

He has the vision to see China’s rise may cause the West to encircle it to hinder China’s rise. The description of the above section precisely proves that. The restoration of the socialist camp will enable China to break the encirclement.

Moreover, Western liberal democracy seems the only good system in the world. China’s socialist democracy, though proved by fact to be much more successful and more beneficial to the people than Western liberal democracy, has always been denounced by the West as an autocracy. The success of all the members of the socialist camp will prove the superiority of socialist democracy to Western liberal democracy.

That will be especially convincing if China is able to make North Korea give up orthodox socialism and copy China’s reform and opening-up. If North Korea that has been notorious for its famine and backwardness, has been able to obtain fast economic growth and substantially raise its people’s living standards, it will have shocking impact not only on developing countries but also on developed Western democracies.

In June 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping visited North Korea. In his speech at the banquet given by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in his honor, he pointed out that under Kim’s leadership North Korean is implementing a new strategic line to focus on economic development and improving people’s livelihood. Xi obviously supports Kim’s efforts because the obstacles to Kim’s copy of Chinese model has been removed.

Previously North Korea could not follow China’s model as its conservatives regard China’s reform as capitalist in nature. Chinese Communist Party recently has adopted Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era that holds that the Chinese model is socialist in nature.

In Kim’s speech, he said that through four meetings, Xi Jinping and Kim have confirmed that persisting the socialist system is the core of the maintenance of Korea-China friendship. He meant that North Korea had admitted that China’s system was a socialist system so that North Korea was willing to copy Chinese model.

The timing is good for North Korea as US tariff hikes on steel import from developed European countries, China, Japan, etc. facilitate North Korea’s development of steel production as no high tariff will be levied on its export of iron and steel. Kim said in his speech that North Korea had been stepping up coal mining and improving the technology and equipment for the production of iron and steel. China can help North Korea by transfer of its surplus iron and steel production capacity.

North Korea’s change will make other socialist countries follow Chinese model. Vietnam has already conducted some reforms similar to China’s but its liberalization of economic resources is still limited. Foreign enterprises are still unable to own land there. Many Chinese enterprises that have moved there for cheap labor and land wanted to move back to China as they should have a Vietnamese partner to own the land they use, which is quite risky for them. Moreover, labor costs have risen quite sharply to make moving to Vietnam not cost effective.

Vietnam has further needs to copy China’s reform. The United States has been exploiting China’s maritime border disputes with Vietnam to pit Vietnam against China, but Trump’s trade war attacks at Vietnam will push Vietnam to Chinese side as after all good relations with a rich neighbor like China may bring much more benefits to Vietnam.

Cuba may be better than Vietnam in switching from orthodox socialism to Chinese style of socialism. It is seeking Russian and Chinese investment in its infrastructures.

The socialist camp will not be restricted to the four countries China, North Korea, Cuba and Vietnam.

Russian can also be regarded as a socialist country as it also has both state-owned and private sectors. Moreover, though it conducts multi-party election with universal suffrage, it is not regarded by the West as a democracy. Some Former Soviet Central Asian countries are similar. They may declare that they remain socialist. Multi-party democracy may also be socialist when the parties upholding socialism are in power. When their new socialism is popular, the parties upholding socialsm will remain in power and those countries may remain socialist.

If Russia and those Central Asian countries join the socialist camp, the socialist camp will be larger and stronger.

What about communists’ international obligations for international revolution?

That will be dealt with in my later posts.

Article by Chan Kai Yee


Xi Jinping a Revolutionary, a True Revolutionary

The Education Xi Jinping Has Received to Be a Revolutionary
At home, Xi Jinping received education about revolution from his father Xi Zhongxun, a well-known communist revolutionary.

At school, he received the education to be a firm revolutionary fighter. It was the education for all students at that time.

A typical lesson in the textbook for secondary school students to be brave in fighting for revolution is the Chinese translation of Gorky’s prose poem Storm Petrel, the English translation of which is copied from Baidu and provided below:

The Stormy Petrel

High above the silvery ocean winds are gathering the storm-clouds, and between the clouds and ocean proudly wheels the Stormy Petrel, like a streak of sable lightning.

Now his wing the wave caresses, now he rises like an arrow, cleaving clouds and crying fiercely, while the clouds detect a rapture in the bird’s courageous crying.

In that crying sounds a craving for the tempest! Sounds the flaming of his passion, of his anger, of his confidence in triumph.

The gulls are moaning in their terror–moaning, darting o’er the waters, and would gladly hide their horror in the inky depths of ocean.

And the grebes are also moaning. Not for them the nameless rapture of the struggle. They are frightened by the crashing of the thunder.

And the foolish penguins cower in the crevices of rocks, while alone the Stormy Petrel proudly wheels above the ocean, o’er the silver-frothing waters.

Ever lower, ever blacker, sink the stormclouds to the sea, and the singing waves are mounting in their yearning toward the thunder.

Strikes the thunder. Now the waters fiercely battle with the winds. And the winds in fury seize them in unbreakable embrace, hurtling down the emerald masses to be shattered on the cliffs.

Like a streak of sable lightning wheels and cries the Stormy Petrel, piercing storm-clouds like an arrow, cutting swiftly through the waters.

He is coursing like a Demon, the black Demon of the tempest, ever laughing, ever sobbing–he is laughing at the storm-clouds, he is sobbing with his rapture.

In the crashing of the thunder the wise Demon hears a murmur of exhaustion. And he knows the storm will die and the sun will be triumphant; the sun will always be triumphant!

The waters roar. The thunder crashes. Livid lightning flares in stormclouds high above the seething ocean, and the flaming darts are captured and extinguished by the waters, while the serpentine reflections writhe, expiring, in the deep.

It’s the storm! The storm is breaking!

Still the valiant Stormy Petrel proudly wheels among the lightning, o’er the roaring, raging ocean, and his cry resounds exultant, like a prophecy of triumph–

Let it break in all its fury!

Let the storm of revolution break in all its fury! That is Gorky’s description of a revolutionary’s mindset in the storm of a revolution.

That prose poem remained in secondary school Chinese language textbooks for a long time since the communist takeover in China. It was popular among students and inspired them to be brave in fighting for revolution. Chinese teenagers’ enthusiasm during the Cultural Revolution proved that.

My Colleague Wu’s Bravery in War with South Vietnam Also Proved That
When I worked as an electrician in a large chemical plant, I had a new colleague just retired from navy. I was told that he was a war hero but we did not think so as just like other electricians, he was fond of making funs, joking and even playing pranks.

We asked him to tell us about his heroic deeds in the navy that made him honored as a war hero. He said that he was just lucky to have the opportunity to fight in a real combat.

He said that when he joined the navy, he thought it would be dull in the military as it was in peace time so that he would never have the chance to fight in a war. He received training as an electrician on the warship as he was good at science and mathematics at school. That job was interesting but it was not what he joined the navy for.

He said, “It happened that we had an encounter with South Vietnamese navy. We usually avoid meeting them but due to some misinformation, we had a surprise encounter. We tried hard to run away as we were told to avoid fighting an enemy better equipped than us. We had to prevent our valuable naval assets from being destroyed by the enemy.

“However, before we were able to sail away, the Vietnamese opened fire and hit our warship. Our gunner was injured and had to be brought down to receive treatment. I had been trained as the stand-by gunner but had never thought I would have the chance to fight as a gunner. However, I received gunner training conscientiously as I was told by our commander that in peace time my job as the electrician is most important but in a war the gunner was most important. If the gunner was unable to hit, destroy and even sink enemy’s warship, we will be hit and even be sunk by the enemy.”

He told us that his first shot missed but he made quick readjustment so that the next few shots all hit and finally sank the enemy warship. The others all ran away so that the Chinese fleet won the battle. He was awarded a citation of merit along with quite a few others alive or dead for their performance in the battle.

“Were you not afraid? It was the first time you were under gunfire, ” asked one of my young colleagues.

He said, “You all have read Gorky’s Stormy Petrel in our textbooks. At that time, I was a stormy petrel waiting for storm. I am excited that the storm had really come.”

Xi Jinping Also a Stormy Petrel in Revolutionary Storms

The first generation of the communists in CCP, risked their lives to fight and win their revolution. Xi is not required to fight like them, but he took similar risks in his fight for Chinese revolution.

He took great risks in fighting rampant corruption when he took over the reign. The greatest risks were his fight against retired generals who controlled Chinese military and powerful retired senior official who controlled Chinese police.

He has restored socialism in China with his Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. In the course of the establishment of the Thought, he conducted a revolution in CCP to restore it as revolutionary party fighting for communism. By so doing he has put an end to the degeneration of CCP into a huge vested interest.

His recent visit to North Korea and his Belt and Road initiative told us that he has been making efforts for the recovery of the socialist camp. It is a new form of communist world revolution commensurate with the new situation in the world. There will be no violent revolution but peaceful win-win cooperation for common prosperity. In stead of world communism, he is making great efforts to establish a world community with shared destiny.

Those will be elaborated in my later posts

Article by Chan Kai Yee

China Pursues Socialism instead of State-dominated Capitalism

The Boom of Private Sector in China Since Deng Xiaoping’s reform.
Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader Xi Jinping’s socialism with Chinese characteristics differs substantially from the orthodox socialism advocated by the traditional communists before Deng Xiaoping’s reform and opening-up. Deng invented for the first time CCP’s socialism with Chinese characteristics.

Orthodox socialism advocates monolithic public ownership. That was the case in the Soviet Union as well as China in Mao era where private enterprises had been entirely eliminated. Deng’s socialism with Chinese characteristics, however, not only allows but even encourages and supports private enterprises. Since the commencement of Deng’s reform in late 1970s, there has been a boom of private economic sector in China.

Now through 4 decades of reform, China’s private sector has grown larger, paid more taxes and provided more jobs than its state-owned sector. In addition, most state-owned enterprises have been turned into joint stock companies listed in China’s stock exchanges. Private investors own lots of shares in them though the state remains their largest shareholders. We cannot say those companies are entirely owned by the state. In addition, the state-owned companies have the obligations to provide information about and manage themselves satisfactorily to enable private investors the best possible return to their investment.

Is China a State-dominated Capitalism?

In order to achieve China’s transformation from the pursuit of export- and investment-geared economic growth to innovation-, creation- and consumption-led growth, Chinese President Xi Jinping and CCP are now vigorously encouraging and supporting China’s private economic sectors. They now advocate equal treatment to state-owned, private and foreign enterprises in order to strengthen Chinese enterprises through competition.

The support and encouragement CPC gives to private enterprises, especially their innovation and creation make people outside China mistake China’s socialism with Chinese characteristics as state-dominated capitalism.

The socialism in Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Character for a New Era is the socialism for a new era; therefore, Marx’s and Engel’s concept of communism perhaps has to be adapted to the new situation as communism for a new era.

However, CCP remains a communist party not only in name but in essence.

CCP Remains a Communist Party though Not Pursuing Orthodox Socialism
It is crystal clear that the Chinese Communist Party is a communist party as every member shall take an oath when joining the party to fight for communism all his/her life.

To urge CCP members to fight for communism all their lives, the theme of CCP 19th Congress is: Remain true to our original aspiration and keep our mission firmly in mind. The original aspiration and the mission are each CCP member’s promise in his/her oath to fight for communism all his/her life.

To make it more specific, CCP leader Xi Jinping stresses in his speech to the Congress: The original aspiration and the mission of Chinese Communists is to seek happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation.

Politically, Chinese politics are dominated by the communist party that fights for communism.

Economically, China’s state-owned sector, though not the largest sector, controls the most important industries vital to the nation including those concerning energy, military, communications, telecommunications, publication, entertainment, education, etc.

The state-owned sector is not a capitalist sector that regards making money as their major goal. Its mission is to serve the Chinese people for their happiness and the nation for its rejuvenation.

Communists are well-known for being revolutionaries. Do Chinese communists remain revolutionaries?

The question will be answered in my post tomorrow.

Article by Chan Kai Yee

Stick to Marx not ‘ghosts and spirits’, China warns party members

February 27, 2019

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s ruling Communist Party warned party members on Wednesday to stick to Marx and Lenin and not believe in “ghosts and spirits”, in the latest effort to root out superstitious practices.

China officially guarantees freedom of religion for major belief systems like Christianity, Buddhism and Islam, but party members are meant to be atheists and are especially banned from participating in what China calls superstitious practices like visiting soothsayers.

There have been numerous scandals in recent years where senior party members have been accused of involvement in superstition.

A lengthy statement on how best to strengthen the party’s role and its leadership, issued on the official Xinhua news agency, said Marxism was the guiding thought for China and the party. “Resolutely prevent not believing in Marx and Lenin and believing in ghosts and spirits, not believing in the truth and believing in money,” the party statement said.

“Resolutely oppose all forms of mistaken thought that distorts, misrepresents or negates Marxism.”

President Xi Jinping said last year that the party’s decision to stick with the political theories of Karl Marx remained “totally correct”, to mark the 200th anniversary of the German philosopher’s birth.

Chinese people, especially the country’s leaders, have a long tradition of putting their faith in soothsaying and geomancy, looking for answers in times of doubt, need and chaos.

The practice has grown more risky amid a sweeping crackdown on deep-seated corruption launched by Xi upon assuming power in late 2012, in which dozens of senior officials have been imprisoned.

The founder of modern China, Mao Zedong, banned fortune telling and superstition in puritan, communist China after the 1949 revolution, but the occult has made a comeback since the still officially atheist country embraced economic reforms and began opening up in the late 1970s.

In one of the most famous recent cases, China’s powerful former security chief Zhou Yongkang was jailed for life in part due to accusations he leaked undisclosed state secrets to a fortune teller and healer called Cao Yongzheng, known as the “Xinjiang sage” after the far western region where he grew up.

Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Darren Schuettler

Source: Reuters “Stick to Marx not ‘ghosts and spirits’, China warns party members”

Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.

Jiang Zemin Has Maintained China’s Centralized Core System

China’s Core System (4) (Parts (1), (2) and (3) are “The Conundrum of China’s Collective Leadership” dated January 28, “No 2nd Generation of CCP Collective Leadership in China” on January 29 and “Fight for the Position of the Core when There Was No Core” on February 22.)

How Jiang Zemin dealt with Qiao Shi and Li Peng’s challenges
Could Jiang hold a PSC meeting to have PSC members vote on his position as the core to have the final say? Jiang was not sure he had the majority votes as most likely the other PSC members wanted equal power so that each and every member was one of the first-ranking leaders. If there was a core that had final say, the core would be the first-ranking leader while all the other members would be second-ranking leaders. Who would cast his vote to support Jiang as the first-ranking core and thus reduce himself to second-ranking? Jiang certainly knew very clear that he could not rely on the collective leadership to vote for him to have the final say.

By that time Jiang had made great efforts to establish his powerbase and was quite successful though had not obtained dominant power. Without Deng, the core of the second generation of CCP leadership, Jiang was not even sure that he was strong enough to ensure that the new central committee to be elected a few months later in the 15th Congress would elect him into the new Politburo or the new Politburo would elect him into the new PSC if he would be elected into the Politburo.

Jiang was entrusted by Deng to carry on Deng’s reform. Deng gave him instruction to gain the power to have final say as the core. Deng set an example in person by his Southern Tour to show the power of the core in forcing all other officials to obey his order to carry on the reform in spite of their opposition to the reform. Jiang had been assigned by Deng to carry on Deng’s reform after Deng died; therefore, it is imperative for Jiang to gain the power as the core of leadership. Jiang realized the urgency for him to maintain his position as the core and overcome Qiao and Li’s challenges.

CCP Elder’s Power
Jiang knew that the election at CCP Congress was controlled by the remaining four of the eight powerful elders after the death of the major elders Deng, Chen Yun, Li Xiannian and Peng Zhen. Among the four, Bo Yibo was the most powerful as Bo was very close to Deng. According to Zhao Ziyang’s secret memoir, Deng entrusted Bo to make preparations for 13th and 14th CCP Congresses. Bo prepared for the congresses the lists of the members of central committee and Politburo and candidates for high official posts and submitted them to Deng for approval. As a result, Bo had great influence among Politburo and central committee members and high officials and could easily control the voting in the 15th Congress in 1997.

Jiang sought Bo’s help. With Bo’s help, he made Qiao retire at the 15th Congress and exploited the conflict between Li Peng and Qiao Shi as Qiao Shi said that the State Council under Li Peng’s control should report to Qiao. At that time, Qiao though ranked the third below Li was popular among reformists. According to China’s constitution, Li though ranked the second above Qiao was to be appointed as the premier by the NPC controlled by Qiao. If Qiao had not contended for the position to be the core, Li would have had to contend with Jiang only. Now Li had to deal with Qiao in addition to Jiang in order to become the core. That was too much for him.

By that time, Li has served two terms as premier and had to resign from the post of premier. Jiang cleverly offered Li Qiao’s post. Li, though could not become the core, would rank nominally higher than premier and could appoint the premier. That was at least a promotion. Jiang had thus won over Li and along with Li’s protégés in the State Council and the conservatives behind Li.

Qiao had been honest and upright all his life so that it was not likely that he had the ambition to become the core. Perhaps, he simply wanted the NPC to constraint Jiang Zemin and avoid the repetition of an autocracy like Mao’s.

Anyway, Qiao’s democratic idea that regarded the NPC instead of the Party as the only power centre may weaken CCP’s political power. He certainly could not get powerful elders’ support in his power struggle with Jiang. However, when he chaired the NPC, the NPC acted less like a rubber stamp. Since his retirement, no NPC chairman has ever challenged the Party’s leadership again and the NPC has fully resumed its role as a rubber stamp.

No Collective Leadership when Jiang Zemin Was the Core
Jiang learnt from Deng’s example and has obtained top power through the help of powerful elders, especially Bo Xilai’s father Bo Yibo. With the help of Zhu Rongji, he obtained the prestige in CCP by his successful reform to make China’s loss-making State-owned enterprises profitable. By the time he retired from PSC, he had soundly established his powerbase. Hu Jintao was not his but his mentor Deng Xiaoping’s choice as his successor. Out of his gratitude and respect for Deng his mentor, Jiang had to appoint and groom Hu Jintao as his successor. However, Jiang’s first priority was to carry on Deng’s reform and opening-up. As Hu has not established his powerbase to succeed Jiang as the core, Jiang had to maintain his control to keep on the reform.

He appointed his protégés into PSC to control PSC majority and thus controlled PSC’s decision making. As a result, PSC made decision by the majority controlled by Jiang. That gave the false impression that there was collective leadership in PSC, but in reality, the decisions had been made in accordance with Jiang’s instructions to the PSC members controlled by Jiang.

At first, Deng Xiaoping wanted to establish a system of collective leadership in the Party, but after Tiananmen Protests, he changed his mind and wanted the collective leadership to have a core. The idea about a core is perhaps realistic for the Party because for thousands of years, China has to have a highly centralized power center.

Article by Chan Kai Yee

China enshrines ‘Xi Jinping Thought’, key Xi ally to step down

Chinese President Xi Jinping raises his hand as he takes a vote at the closing session of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China at the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China October 24, 2017.REUTERS/Jason Lee

China Party Congress 2017

Michael Martina, Philip Wen October 24, 2017

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s ruling Communist Party enshrined President Xi Jinping’s political thought into its constitution on Tuesday, putting him in the same company as the founder of modern China, Mao Zedong, and cementing his power ahead of a second five-year term.

A key Xi ally, top corruption fighter Wang Qishan, will not be on the new Politburo Standing Committee, the apex of power in China, to be revealed on Wednesday as he was not among those named on Tuesday to the 204-member Central Committee.

Whether or not the powerful Wang would remain on the Standing Committee, which currently has seven members, despite being beyond the customary retirement age of 69, had been among the key questions to be answered at the week-long party congress, which ended on Tuesday. Wang could still assume another senior role over the next few months.

As expected, the party unanimously passed an amendment to include “Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era” as one of its guiding principles.

The party will announce its new Standing Committee, headed by Xi, at around midday (0400 GMT) on Wednesday, culminating a twice-a-decade leadership reshuffle.

As expected, the amended constitution affirmed that Xi’s signature fight against corruption, which has ensnared more than 1.3 million officials, will continue.

Unexpectedly, Xi’s “Belt and Road” initiative, an ambitious program to build infrastructure linking China with its neighbors and beyond, was also included in the party constitution.

Also included was a commitment to supply-side industrial reforms, and giving play to the “decisive role” of market forces in resource allocation, a commitment Xi had made early in his first terms that many investors say he has failed to deliver on.

“The party exercises overall leadership over all areas of endeavor in every part of the country,” the party said in a statement reflecting Xi’s ongoing efforts to strengthen the party and its place in contemporary Chinese society.

If no clear successor to Xi is named to the new Politburo Standing Committee, it will further fuel speculation that Xi may look to retain power beyond the customary second five-year term.

“This is about further erasing any distinction between Xi Jinping and the party,” said Jude Blanchette, who studies the party at The Conference Board’s China Center for Economics and Business in Beijing, referring to Xi’s thought getting into the constitution.

“Add on to this having supply-side structural reform and One Belt One Road written into this, which were Xi’s signature policies, this makes questioning or non-compliance with those tantamount to betrayal of the party.”


Chinese President Xi Jinping raises his hand as he takes a vote at the closing session of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China at the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China October 24, 2017.REUTERS/Jason Lee
Xu Hongcai, deputy chief economist at the China Centre for International Economic Exchanges, a Beijing think-tank, said party control was needed to push through the market reforms key to restructuring the world’s second-largest economy.

“To build a market economic system in such a big country, it’s impossible without the leadership of the party,” he said.

Others have argued that the two are contradictory.

“When you put ‘supply-side reform’ and ‘market playing a decisive role’ in the same document, then that just shows they have to almost choose one,” said Alex Wolf, Senior Emerging Markets Economist with Aberdeen Standard Investments in Hong Kong.

China’s blue-chip shares climbed to a 26-month high on Tuesday, led by infrastructure and property stocks, as Xi wrapped up a congress that began with his three-and-a half hour speech envisioning a more prosperous, confident China. The yuan strengthened against the dollar.


Xi rapidly consolidated power after assuming party leadership in late 2012 and then the presidency the next year. The party gave Xi the title of “core” leader a year ago, a significant strengthening of his position.

Whether Xi was able to have his name “crowned” in the party constitution had been seen as a key measure of his power, elevating him to a level of previous leaders exemplified by Mao Zedong Thought and Deng Xiaoping Theory.

No other leader since Mao has had an eponymous ideology included in the document while in office. Deng’s name was added after his death in 1997.

A list of 133 committee members for the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection released on Tuesday included Zhao Leji, who heads the party’s Organisation Department, a strong sign that he will take over from Wang as anti-corruption chief.

China’s top banking regulator, Guo Shuqing, and veteran banker Jiang Chaoliang, front runners to succeed Zhou Xiaochuan as central bank governor, both made it to the Central Committee.

The constitutional amendment, along with Xi’s work report and a work report of the graft watchdog to the congress, were passed by a show of hands.

When Xi next asked for any “no” votes or abstentions for the amendment or two work reports, the sound of “none” echoed throughout the chamber, as officials shouted out from different sides of the hall.

Reporting by Michael Martina and Philip Wen; Additional reporting by Stella Qiu, Christian Shepherd, Elias Glenn and Kevin Yao; Writing by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Neil Fullick, Paul Tait and Tony Munroe

Source: Reuters “China enshrines ‘Xi Jinping Thought’, key Xi ally to step down”

Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.

CCP’s New Guiding Ideology—Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era

CCP (Chinese Communist Party) will amend its constitution to add Xi Jinping Though on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era to CCP’s list of guiding ideologies: Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, Three Represents and the Scientific Outlook on Development.

The Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era appears repeatedly in Xi Jinping’s three and a half hours’ speech but without his name Xi Jinping placed before it.

In CCTV’s prime time news the day before yesterday on Xi attending a panel discussion of Xi’s speech, the report shows Xi talking about the new era of socialism with Chinese characteristics but does not mention the thought. It also shows others speaking about their impression of Xi’s speech.

However, the reports on other members of CCP Politburo Standing Committee members Zhang Dejiang, Yu Zhengsheng and Liu Yunshan attending panel discussions the day before yesterday and Li Keqiang, Wang Qishan and Zhang Gaoli, yesterday only provide those members speeches about Xi’s speech especially the greatness of the thought without providing what any others spoke. In addition, all of them put Xi Jinping before “Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era” to indicate such thought is Xi Jinping’s.

The following are photos taken from CCTV prime time news footages of the six CCP Politburo Standing Committee members Li Keqiang, Zhang Dejiang, Yu Zhengsheng, Liu Yunshan, Wang Qishan and Zhang Gaoli speaking at separate panel discussions on greatness of Xi Jinping Thought:

We have seen quite a few titles of Xi in Chinese official media: leader, commander, core, etc. but with Xi Jinping Thought, he will perhaps have the additional titles of helmsman and teacher. Whether there will be the adjective “great” before such titles I do not know, but I am certain the title of teacher fits him.

As for the title of helmsman, it was the title Lin Biao gave Mao. Lin was ignorant that in modern times, a ship is navigated by the captain and his top assistants instead of the helmsman, who but operates the helm at the captain’s order. Navigator must be a better title.

Comment by Chan Kai Yee on CCTV prime time news on CCP 19th Congress.