Perspectives of the CPC 20th National Congress & China-Pakistan relations

Zhao Shiren, Chinese Consul General Lahore

The 20th National Congress of’ the CPC came to a successful end in Beijing on October 22. Widely hailed as a new milestone in China’s development going forward, it is historic in all dimensions.

One of the most important achievements of the Congress is the re-election of Comrade Xi Jinping as General Secretary of the CPC.

Comrade Xi was both re-elected with unanimity into the Central Committee and the General Secretaryship, manifesting the consensus and massive support among the Party and the people.

By serving General Secretary for a third term, Comrade Xi Jinping is sure to lead China for building a modern socialist country in all respects, achieving the second centenary goal and ultimately the national rejuvenation.

To help the Pakistani audience better understand the 20th CPC National Congress, I’d like to use “3Ps”(personnel, party and policy)to summarize the key outcomes and important contributions of the Congress.

Like election, the Party Congress is to choose the new leadership, which always attracts most attention.

The 1stParty plenary session was held the day after the closing of the Congress, providing a clear picture of the central leadership to the outside world.

Party’s Politburo Standing Committee, the highest decision-making body in China, remains consisting of 7 persons, with 3 retaining their membership and 4 new faces. General Secretary Xi Jinping remains at the Party core position.

It is also worth mentioning that Mr. Li Qiang has been elected the second-ranking Politburo Standing Committee member, indicating a high probability for him to be the new head of government in March 2023 when the National People’s Congress session comes.

By a new leadership lineup, the Congress shows solidarity, unity and political certainty, coupled with a fresh vigor and vitality. It also ensures at the highest level of the CPC the consistency, continuity and sustainability of China’s domestic and foreign policy.

The Party and the Chinese people have reachedcommon understanding that the great achievements made by China in the new era owe to the strong leadership of the Party Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at the core, as well as to the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era.

Success of a country and of a political party requires a strong leadership core and the guidance of well-conceived theories and strategies.

As China forges ahead, the establishment of Comrade Xi Jinping’s core position in the Party leadership and of the guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought is of decisive significance for the whole nation.

The CPC is the leading political force in China and playsa pivotal role in building China into a modern major power.

As the largest political party(with 96 million members) and governing party in the world, it faces daunting challenges in governance, reform and opening up, building of the market economyand the external environmental risks. The CPC is also confronted with major dangers of being lackluster in spirit, insufficient capacity building, disengagement from the population and corruption.

The CPC knows well the old adage that “it takes a good blacksmith to make good steel”. Soberly recognizing the aforementioned challenges and risks, and acknowledging the scenario of “too big to fall”, the Party stays alert and is determined to tackle all the issues to maximize the people’s support and consolidate its position as the long-servingruling party.

The 20th Congress once again revised the Party Constitution, exercised full and rigorous self-governance, reaffirmed and renewed the central leadership composition, highlighted for the first time the great spirit of party building, and incorporated the fighting spirit and the capacity buildinginto its constitution.

It has further strengthened the centralized and unified leadership of the Party Central Committee, enhancedinternal cohesion and organizational functions, and improved the systems and regulations for party’s reform and innovation.

It has adopted strict measures to regulate party members’ conduct and enforce the discipline, making relentless efforts to win the tough and protractedbattle against corruption. The Congress has laid a solid foundation for the Party to set sail for the second centenary goal and the great project of the CPC building.

National security and social stability is prerequisite for building a strong and prosperous China.

Under the leadership of the CPC, China has provided predictable, consistent and credible policies to its own and to the world.

One prominent feature of the overall policy outcomes of the 20th Congress is the Chinese modernization, which is crucial for China to kick off a good start in building a modern socialist country in all respects in the years ahead.

This achievement is a major theoretical breakthrough in terms of guiding policy and principle. Modernization is the national pursuit of almost all the countries in the world and is widely interpreted as westernization only.

This perception has been corrected by the 20th Congress in which the Party points out that the Chinese modernization is socialist modernization pursued under the leadership of the CPC.

It contains elements that are common to the modernization processes of all countries, but is more characterized by features that are unique to the Chinese context.

First, Chinese modernizationcovers a huge population of over 1.4 billion, a number that is larger than that of the developed countries combined.

Second, Chinese modernization strives for achieving common prosperity for all, which means to meet the people’s aspirations for a better life and promote social fairness and justice, bring prosperity to the whole society and prevent polarization. Third, Chinese modernization is of material and cultural-ethical advancement.

It pursues to improve not only people’s material wellbeing, but also the cultural enrichment. The Party strives to develop advanced culture, foster strong ideals and convictions, and promote material abundance as well as the full development of the people.

Fourth, Chinese modernization promotes harmony between humanity and nature, thus responding to the climate change and environmental hazards, meaning we have only one planet to live on and we should ensure a sustainable development.

Fifth, Chinese modernization is committed to peaceful development, meaning China will not tread the old path of war, colonization and plunder taken by some countries.

China will stand on the right side of history and be dedicated to world peace, development, cooperation and mutual benefit through its own development.

The primary task for Chinese modernization is to pursue high-quality development. Namely, the high-quality economic growth and reform & opening up; the high-quality democratic governance and whole-process people’s democracy; the high-quality cultural growth and social justice; the high-quality security establishment; and the high-quality capacity and institutional building on governance.

The Congress has made it clear that China will follow Chinese modernization to achievethe Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation.

China’s experience and practice has proven that every country must choose its own path of development based on its own national realities.

There is no universal model, nor will China export its development model. The Chinese modernization provides a new paradigm for international community and the developing countries in particular.

At present, momentous changes of a like not seen in a century are accelerating across the world, with a significant shift taking place in the international balance of power.

Pandemic has had far-reaching effects; a backlash against globalization is rising; and unilateralism and protectionism are mounting. The global economic recovery is sluggish, regional conflicts and disturbances are frequent, and global issues are becoming more difficult to tackle with.

Suffered by the growing deficits in peace, development, security and governance, the world has entered a new period of turbulence and change, coming to a crossroads in history.

The CPC Congress reaffirms the commitments of the Party and the country to world peace and common development, and is dedicated to promoting a human community with a shared future through the Belt and Road Initiative.

China adheres to the right course of economic globalization, is prepared to invest more resources in global development cooperation, and will play a more active part in the reform and development of the global governance system.

China will be more actively involved in setting global security rules, work to promote international security cooperation, and play a constructive role in ensuring world peace and regional stability.

We are committed to promoting a new type of international relations. We cherish friendship and cooperation with other countries, especially strive to enhance friendly ties, mutual trust, and converging interests withour neighboring countries.

Facing such highly uncertain world, the Congress responds to it with certainty, hedging the instability of the international situation with the stability of its foreign policies, and providing a strong and lasting impetus for the recovery of the world economies, making unremitting efforts for the peaceful development of the region and the world.

The 20th Congress has put the new leadership in place, solidified the party self-innovation and reform, defined the national development philosophy and strategy, outlined major policy initiatives both domestic and foreign, charting a new course for China’s future development.

The Congress has also positive impact on the development of China-Pakistan relations. Prime Minister Shehbaz paid a successful maiden official visit to China right after the Party Congress. He is the first head of government invited.

This speaks volumes aboutthe great importance attached to by the new Chinese leadership on China-Pakistan relations. During the PM’s visit, both sides issued a joint statement and signed several agreements/MoUs in a wide range of areas. Leaders of the two countries reached an important consensus on the ML-1 project for its early implementation.

China also agreed to actively advance the Karachi Circular Railway and encourage Chinese companies to participate in solar and other renewable energy projects. New concepts like health corridor, industrial corridor, digital corridor, and green corridor will become an important part of the high-quality development of the CPEC in the next phase.

China also announced to Pakistan an extra 500 million yuan in emergency assistance for post-disaster reconstruction, making the total aid of 36 billion rupees, ranking first among the helping countries.


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