- David Gitter, Julia Bowie, Nathanael Callan
Weekly Report 1|43 8.18.2018-8.24.2018
Xi Jinping made two major public appearances after last week’s Beidaihe meeting for senior leaders. In his first appearance, he stressed CCP control of the military at the Central Military Commission’s Party Building Conference (see CMC section).
In the next major appearance at the National Propaganda and Ideological Work Conference, he stressed that “the Party Central Committee’s decisions and deployments on propaganda and ideological work are absolutely correct” (see Propaganda section).
The National Supervisory Commission, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, Ministry of Public Security, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs jointly released an announcement urging duty-related criminals who fled overseas to turn themselves in (see Party Discipline section).
Xi Jinping Meets with Malaysian Prime Minister
8.20 Xi Jinping met with the Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. According to Xinhua, he praised Mahathir for “attaching great importance to China-Malaysia relations,” “repeatedly expressing that he views China as a development opportunity and supports the Belt and Road Initiative,” and “making important contributions to promoting regional cooperation in Asia” as well as for “advocating ‘Asian values’ and self-determination.”
Xi emphasized that “the two sides must continue their friendship and deepen cooperation.” More specifically, he called for “promoting an upgrade to the quality of China-ASEAN cooperation, promoting the construction of an East Asian economic community, giving new energy to South-South cooperation, improving the representation and say of developing countries, and taking a clear-cut stand against unilateralism and trade protectionism.”
Xi Jinping Meets with Communist Party of Vietnam Politburo Member Trần Quốc Vượng
8.20 Xi Jinping met with Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Politburo member and permanent member of the CPV Central Committee’s Secretariat Trần Quốc Vượng. Xinhua reported him as saying that “the overall momentum of China-Vietnam relations toward good development is more consolidated and the potential for friendly cooperation between China and Vietnam has been continuously released. We are happy about this.”
Xi also stated that the two sides must “maintain high-level exchanges,” “increase the connections between the two countries’ development strategies and policies,” “adhere to dialogue and consultation,” “promote making substantive headway in bilateral maritime joint development as soon as possible,” and “further consolidate bilateral relations’ foundation in public opinion.”
Xi Jinping Attends the National Propaganda and Ideological Work Conference
8.21-22 A national conference on propaganda and ideological work was held in Beijing. Xi Jinping attended and gave an important speech at the conference.
During his speech, Xi pointed out that “since the 18th Party Congress… socialism with Chinese characteristics and the China Dream have been deeply rooted in people’s hearts, core socialist values and the excellent traditional Chinese culture have been broadly advocated, … and the influence of the country’s cultural soft power and Chinese culture has considerably increased,” showing that “the Party Central Committee’s decisions and deployments on propaganda and ideological work are absolutely correct.”
Xi said that, as socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, “unifying thoughts and concentrating strength must be treated as the center of propaganda and ideological work.” He pointed out that the people’s desire to have a beautiful life must be treated as the goal of struggle, the China path and Chinese characteristics must be proactively explained well, and the Internet dissemination pattern must be scientifically understood. Politburo Standing Committee and Central Committee Secretariat member Wang Huning (王沪宁) presided over the conference.
Wen Yan: Firmly Win the Poverty Alleviation Battle and Write a New Chapter in the Anti-Poverty History of Mankind
8.21 People’s Daily published an article under Wen Yan (闻言), a pen name used by the Central Committee Party Literature Research Office, praising a recently released compilation of Xi Jinping’s statements on poverty alleviation (习近平扶贫论述摘编).
The article stressed that “poverty alleviation is the most arduous task in realizing the first centenary goal of struggle, which is to build a moderately prosperous society in all respects” before stating that the Central Committee with Xi at its core has made a series of critical arrangements that significantly improved the living conditions in impoverished areas.
The article said that the compilation “fully recognizes the significance of poverty alleviation,” “adheres to the developmental path of poverty alleviation with Chinese characteristics,” and deeply describes the prospects for “building a world without poverty.”
The article concluded by noting that there are less than three years left for China to build a moderately prosperous society in all respects. Therefore, Xi’s statements on poverty alleviation must be deeply learned to win the battle of poverty alleviation.
PD Commentator Article: Support the Important Measure for Sharing National Development Opportunities with Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan Compatriots
8.22 A People’s Daily commentator article praised the recently released State Council regulation allowing Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan compatriots to apply for a mainland residence card (港澳台居民居住证). It stated that this regulation “fully embodied the determination and sincerity of the Party Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping as the core’s support for Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan compatriots sharing in national development opportunities.”
Following an extensive rundown of the benefits provided by the regulation, the article turned its attention toward the reaction among Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan compatriots. It claimed that those already residing in China “enthusiastically support” the regulation and “have hearts filled with expectation” as a result. The article ended with a call for the people of Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan “to join hands with mainland compatriots to create a more beautiful life.”
Zhong Sheng: The Correct Choice of Conforming to Major Trends and Popular Sentiment
8.22 People’s Daily used its Zhong Sheng (钟声) column, which authoritatively transmits the opinions of the People’s Daily on matters of international affairs, to celebrate the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and El Salvador on 21 August 2018. It described this development as “a just and honorable step that is a trend of the times and common aspiration of people everywhere.”
After describing Taiwan as “an inalienable part of China’s territory” and the One China Principle as “the universal consensus of the international community,” the column argued that Panama, the Dominican Republic, and El Salvador’s successive decisions to establish diplomatic relations with China over the last year and a half is evidence of “the thorough development of friendly and cooperative relations between China and the Latin American and Caribbean region.”
Zhong Sheng: Focus Attention upon a Historic Meeting for Strengthening China-Africa Solidarity and Cooperation
8.22 People’s Daily published a Zhong Sheng article supporting the upcoming 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). It declared that all sides “look forward to Chinese and African leaders jointly discussing a big plan for friendly cooperation between China and Africa and promote the expedited construction of a closer community of shared future for China and Africa.”
The column noted that Xi Jinping has visited Africa four times since coming to power five years ago and cited this fact as evidence of China’s “determination and sincerity in developing its relations with African countries.” It also argued that Africans largely approve of FOCAC since China’s attitude toward cooperation with Africa is characterized by “deep trust, promise keeping, high efficiency, and pragmaticism.”
PD Commentator Article: Work Hard to Initiate the New Phase of Propaganda and Ideological Work
8.24 People’s Daily published a commentator article discussing Xi Jinping’s important speech at this week’s national conference on propaganda and ideological work. The article stressed the importance of the Party’s role in such work, writing that “to do propaganda and ideological work well in the new situation, the Party and people are key. [We] must strengthen the Party’s comprehensive leadership.” It added that “conduct is a guarantee for strengthening the Party’s comprehensive leadership over propaganda and ideological work.”
The article also touched on propaganda and ideological work’s significance to cadres and Party committees. More specifically, it stated that “in considering whether a leading cadre is mature and can take on serious responsibilities, considering whether they attach importance to and are good at taking charge of propaganda and ideological work is an important aspect. In considering whether first class Party committees (and Party groups) are strong politically and unswerving in comprehensive strict governance of the Party, whether they take a clear-cut stand in adhering to Party management propaganda and ideology is an important measuring stick.”
United Front Work
PRC Will Issue Special ID for Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan Residents in Mainland China
8.18 The State Council announced a special ID card that will allow people from Hong Kong, Macau, or Taiwan to enjoy “three rights, six services, and nine conveniences” while residing in mainland China will soon be made available. In particular, it is stated that holders of the ID can obtain social security benefits, public housing benefits, and employment rights.
The article stated that the new ID “increases the facilitation of welfare for Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan residents and is an important step in ‘humanization’”.
On 19 August, the State Council General Office released rules for applying for and issuing the mainland resident identity cards for Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan residents (港澳台居民居住证申领发放办法).
Wang Yang Attends 13th CPPCC National Committee Standing Committee’s 3rd Session General Meeting in Beijing
8.21-22 Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee Chairman Wang Yang (汪洋) attended the general meeting of the 13th CPPCC National Committee Standing Committee’s 3rd Session in Beijing. Fourteen members of the CPPCC National Committee and its Standing Committee spoke on problems in and suggestions for pollution prevention and control.
In a speech given at the closing ceremony of the session on 22 August, Wang emphasized that “fighting well the battle of pollution prevention is a joint responsibility for the whole of society and that nobody is an observer or outsider.” He also stressed that “the 13th CPPCC National Committee must adapt to the new era’s new responsibilities and new demands.”
In another meeting, Wang indicated that, in the past few months, all levels of the CPPCC have “strengthened the political guidance of ideology” and studied General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important thoughts on strengthening and improving CPPCC work.
Liu Xincheng: Grasp the Focal Points for Strengthening the Effectiveness of the Multiparty Cooperation System
8.21 China Association for Promoting Democracy Central Committee Executive Vice Chairman Liu Xincheng (刘新成) instructed members of his party at a training class in Beijing that “as a full-time cadre of the democratic parties, one must use even more holistic thinking to comprehend the new type of political party system.”
Liu’s comments appeared on the front page of Tuanjie Bao.
World Chinese Entrepreneurs Summit Held in Hong Kong
8.23 A forum focused on the “Belt and Road” and new opportunities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Big Bay Area project was held in Hong Kong, where several officials from Hong Kong and Mainland China spoke. Chief Executive of Hong Kong Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor stated that “Hong Kong assumes an important role in ‘Belt and Road’ construction” and that Hong Kong can “become an international hub for ‘Belt and Road’ construction.”
United Front Work Department deputy head Xu Yousheng (许又声) stated that he hopes “countrymen living abroad aid ‘the coming out (走出去)’ of mainland Chinese firms and actively promote cultural exchanges between China and ‘Belt and Road’ countries.” Xu also stated that “overseas Chinese must serve as a bridge.”
Announcement Urging Duty-Related Criminals Who Fled Overseas to Turn Themselves In Released
8.23 The National Supervisory Commission, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, Ministry of Public Security, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs jointly released an announcement urging duty-related criminals who fled overseas to turn themselves in (关于敦促职务犯罪案件境外在逃人员投案自首的公告).
The announcement stated that, criminals who surrender themselves before 31 December 2018 will receive a lighter punishment according to the law. It also stressed that duty-related criminals who escaped overseas should “cherish [this] opportunity and surrender themselves as soon as possible.” Those who are extradited or repatriated after the deadline will be punished severely according to the law.
Central Military Commission
Xi Attends CMC Party Construction Conference, Emphasizes Reinforcing Military’s Party Leadership and Construction in the New Era
8.17-19 Xi Jinping attended and gave an important speech at the Central Military Commission (CMC) Party construction conference in Beijing. He emphasized that “Comprehensively reinforcing the Party’s leadership over and Party construction work of the military in a new era is the requirement for advancing the great new undertaking of Party construction and promoting ‘a strong country and strong military.’”
Xi stressed that “the Party’s leadership and construction… relate to the success or failure of the work of strengthening the military and the long and stable governance of the Party and the country.” He pointed out that “all important issues should be studied and decided by Party committees” and highlighted the importance of cultivating talents, comprehensively strictly governing the Party and military, and continuing the anti-corruption battle. Politburo members and CMC Vice Chairmen Xu Qiliang (许其亮) and Zhang Youxia (张又侠) also attended the conference.
PLA Daily Commentator Articles on Xi’s Speech at the CMC Party Construction Conference
8.20-24 The PLA Daily published a series of commentator articles discussing Xi Jinping’s speech at the CMC Party construction conference.
The first article emphasized that “the key to strengthening the military is the Party” and that “the Party leads everything.” It mentioned the military political work conference in Gutian as an example to show that the Central Committee with Xi as its core has firmly grasped on the Party’s absolute leadership over the military.
The second stressed that “the Party’s absolute leadership over the military should be treated as the soul and the lifeblood of the military that can never be changed or lost,” and that “the gun barrel should always follow the Party.”
The third focused on the organizational system of the Party, saying that “the Party’s strength comes from its organization. When the organization is strong the military is strong.” It emphasized that “the Party’s comprehensive leadership and all of its work require a strong Party organizational system for realization.”
The fourth highlighted the importance of talent cultivation, saying that “human resources is a valuable strategic resource for strengthening the military.”
The fifth emphasized the anti-corruption battle within the military, stressing the need to go after “hedonism and extravagance” and eliminate “formalism and bureaucracy.”
National Defense Minister Wei Fenghe Meets with Indian Prime Minister Modi
8.21 State Councilor and Minister of National Defense Wei Fenghe (魏凤和) met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. Wei passed on Xi Jinping’s and Li Keqiang’s greetings and said that “friendly interaction and win-win cooperation have become the mainstream of the two countries’ and two militaries’ relations.”
Wei said his visit to India will “deepen bilateral exchanges and cooperation in the field of military security, and reinforce the building of a mutual trust mechanism.” Modi said that he has built a favorable relationship with Xi after the multiple meetings they have held together in recent years.
During the visit, Wei also met with Indian Minister of Defense Nirmala Sitharaman to exchange opinions on safeguarding the security and stability of the border area.
International Liaison Work
8.19 International Department Minister Song Tao (宋涛) and Vice Minister Wang Yajun (王亚军) met with a Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) delegation led by CPV Politburo member and permanent member of the CPV Central Committee’s Secretariat Trần Quốc Vượng.
Politburo Standing Committee member Wang Huning (王沪宁) met with the delegation on the following day.
8.20 Song Tao and Wang Yajun met with a cross-party young Japanese politicians’ delegation led by Komeito Party Central Secretariat member and International Affairs Committee Chair Kiyohiko Toyama.
Wang Yajun and CCP Secretariat member and United Front Work Department Head You Quan (尤权) held separate meetings with the delegation on the same day.
8.21 International Department Assistant Minister Shen Beili (沈蓓莉) met with a Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF) task force led by the CPRF Central Committee Chairman’s advisor Vadim Kumin.
8.22 International Department Vice Minister Li Jun (李军) met with the Panamanian Minister of Commerce and Industries Augusto R. Arosemena Moreno.
8.23 Li Jun met with the Palestinian political party Fatah’s Secretary-General Jibril Rajoub.
8.24 Shen Beili met with delegations from the Baltic countries' parliaments.
8.19 Ma Shizhong (马世忠) was appointed director of the Supreme People’s Court’s Political Department and a member of its Party leadership group.
8.20 Jiao Kaihe (焦开河) was elected chair of the 5th National Committee of the Chinese Financial Workers’ Union.
8.20 The State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission announced changes to the leadership of two state-owned enterprises. Gao Hesheng (高和生) was appointed deputy secretary of the China Automotive Technology & Research Center’s Party committee. Liu Jiaqiang (刘家强) was appointed a board member of China National Chemical Engineering Group Corporation (CNCEC) and deputy secretary of its Party committee. Liu Dehui (刘德辉) and Han Bing (韩兵) were appointed standing committee members of CNCEC’s Party committee.
8.21 Wu Shizhong (吴世忠) was appointed deputy head of the National Administration for the Protection of State Secrets.
8.21 Xia Gengsheng (夏更生) was appointed deputy director of the State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development.
8.21 Zhuang Rongwen (庄荣文) was appointed director of the Cyberspace Administration of China and deputy director of the State Council Information Office.
8.21 Xu Lin (徐麟) was appointed director of the State Council Information Office.
8.21 Tian Yulong (田玉龙) was appointed deputy head of the State Administration of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defense.
8.21 Zhou Changkui (周长奎) was appointed vice chairman of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
8.22 Zhang Jinliang (张金良) was appointed general manager of the China Post and deputy secretary of its Party leadership group.
8.22 Wu Yongjie (吴永杰) was appointed general manager of the China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation and deputy secretary of its Party leadership group.
8.22 Meng Zhenping (孟振平) was appointed chairman of China Southern Power Grid and secretary of its Party leadership group.
8.23 Lu Yong (鲁勇) was appointed a member of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce’s Party leadership group.
8.23 Gao Jianshe (高建设) was appointed deputy general manager of China National Machinery Industry Corporation and a member of the standing committee of its Party committee.
8.23 Yang Wei (杨伟) was appointed deputy general manager of Aviation Industry Corporation of China and a member of its Party leadership group.
8.24 Wang Guanghui (王光辉) was appointed director of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate’s Political Bureau and a member of its Party leadership group.
8.24 Nie Furu (聂福如) was appointed assistant minister of the Ministry of Public Security and a member of its Party committee.