Resolution of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on the Major Achievements and Historical Experience of the Party over the Past Century
Adopted at the Sixth Plenary Session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on November 11, 2021
The Party has adhered to the principle of the Party supervising personnel, pursued a more proactive, open, and effective personnel policy, implemented the strategy of invigorating China by developing a quality workforce in the new era, and moved faster to build world-class hubs for talent and innovation, thus bringing together the brightest minds from all corners.
The Party has constantly strengthened its organizational system with a focus on improving the organizational capacity of Party organizations and enhancing their political and organizational functions. By attaching greater attention to the primary level, the Party has promoted full coverage for its organizational framework and initiatives.
The Party has upheld the principles that Party discipline should be even more stringent than the law and that discipline and law enforcement efforts should go hand in hand. It has conducted four forms of oversight over discipline compliance, strengthened political and organizational discipline, and promoted stricter observance of discipline on all fronts. The Party has remained committed to exercising rule-based governance over the Party, strictly abided by the Party Constitution, and developed a sound system of intraparty regulations. It has worked to ensure strict compliance with all Party institutions, and to make Party building efforts more rationally-conceived, institutionalized, and procedure-based.
The Central Committee has stressed that corruption is the greatest threat to the Party’s long-term governance. The fight against corruption is a major political struggle that the Party cannot and must not lose. If we let a few hundred corrupt officials slip through the cracks, we would let down all 1.4 billion Chinese people. We must confine power to an institutional cage and ensure that powers are properly defined, standardized, constrained, and subject to oversight in accordance with discipline and the law.
The Party has made integrated efforts to see that officials do not have the opportunity, desire, or audacity to engage in corruption. It has used punishment as a deterrent, strengthened institutional constraints, and promoted heightened consciousness, so as to ensure that the powers conferred by the Party and the people are always used for the people’s benefit. The Party insists that no place is out of bounds, no ground is left unturned, and no tolerance is shown in the fight against corruption. It has imposed tight constraints, maintained a firm stance, and strengthened long-term deterrents against corruption. It has punished both those who take bribes and those who offer them and ensured that every case is investigated and all perpetrators of corruption are punished. The Party has shown the determination to adopt powerful remedies and the courage to take painful measures for the sake of the bigger picture, and taken firm action to “take out tigers,” “swat flies,” and “hunt down foxes.”
The Party has intensified efforts to address corruption that occurs on the people’s doorsteps, hunt down corrupt officials who fled overseas and recover state assets they had stolen, and root out all corrupt officials. The Party has focused on dealing with cases involving both political and economic corruption, prevented interest groups from arising within the Party, and investigated and punished corrupt officials such as Zhou Yongkang, Bo Xilai, Sun Zhengcai, and Ling Jihua for their serious violations of Party discipline and the law.
The Party has taken the lead in improving Party and state oversight systems, promoted the establishment of the National Commission of Supervision and local supervisory commissions at all levels, and developed an oversight network that facilitates coordination in disciplinary inspections conducted at different levels and mechanisms for promoting coordination between various types of oversight with intraparty oversight playing the main role. Through these efforts, we have strengthened checks and oversight on the exercise of power.
By taking resolute action since the 18th National Congress, we have given full play to the role of full and strict Party self-governance in providing political guidance and guarantees, significantly strengthened the Party’s ability to improve and reform itself and maintain its integrity, and addressed the problem of lax and weak governance over Party organizations at the fundamental level. An overwhelming victory has been achieved in the fight against corruption, and this momentum has been consolidated across the board. As serious potential dangers in the Party, the country, and the military have been rooted out, our Party has grown stronger through revolutionary tempering.
3. Pursuing economic development
Since the launch of reform and opening up, the Party has concentrated on economic development as the central task, and led the people in working diligently to bring about a miracle of rapid growth. China’s economic strength has thus risen by a significant margin.
However, there existed problems such as undue emphasis on the rate and scale of growth in some localities and sectors and an extensive growth model. They, combined with the impact from sluggish world economy in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, led to a stack-up of institutional and structural problems in China’s economy. Imbalanced, uncoordinated, and unsustainable development hence became a glaring issue.
The Central Committee determined that China’s economy had reached a new normal of development, and was transitioning from a stage of high-speed growth to a stage of high-quality development. Our traditional growth model could no longer be sustained in the face of a complex situation in which we must deal with a slowdown in economic growth, make painful structural adjustments, and absorb the effects of previous economic stimulus policies all at once.
The Central Committee noted that applying a new development philosophy represented a profound shift affecting China’s overall development. The GDP growth rate could not serve as the sole yardstick of success for development. Rather, it was imperative to achieve high-quality development in which innovation is the primary driver, coordination is an endogenous trait, eco-friendly growth prevails, openness to the world is the only way, and shared growth is the ultimate goal, with a view to propelling transformative changes in the quality, efficiency, and impetus of economic development.
The Party stepped up strategic planning and unified leadership over economic work, and improved its institutions and mechanisms for leading economic development. Through the fifth plenary session of the 18th Central Committee, the 19th National Congress, the fifth plenary session of the 19th Central Committee, and a series of central economic work conferences, it rolled out new plans and made major decisions in this regard. They were as follows: focusing on the main theme of high-quality development and the main task of supply-side structural reform; building a modern economic system; expanding domestic demand as a strategic priority; and fighting effectively in the three critical battles against potential risk, poverty, and pollution.
The Party has worked with unswerving commitment to consolidate and develop the public sector and to encourage, support, and guide the development of the non-public sector. It has prompted state capital and state-owned enterprises to grow stronger, better, and larger, established a modern enterprise system with Chinese characteristics, and worked to make the public sector more competitive, innovative, risk-resilient, and capable of exerting a greater level of influence and control over the economy. A cordial and clean relationship has been cultivated between government and business, and steps have been taken to facilitate the healthy growth of the non-public sector and encourage those working in this sector to achieve success.
The Party has been committed to the innovation-driven development strategy. It has made self-reliance in science and technology the strategic pillar for the country’s development and developed a new system for mobilizing the resources nationwide for this purpose. It has strengthened China’s capabilities in strategic science and technology, intensified basic research, and spurred breakthroughs and original innovation on core technologies in key fields. The Party has bolstered the creation, protection, and application of intellectual property rights, and moved faster to build China into a country of innovators and a global leader in science and technology.
The Party has carried out supply-side structural reform on all fronts. It has worked to cut overcapacity, reduce excess inventory, deleverage, lower costs, and shore up weaknesses, and implemented the principles of consolidating gains made in this regard, strengthening the dynamism of micro entities, upgrading industrial chains, and ensuring unimpeded flows in the economy. It has increased efforts to build China into a manufacturer of quality, build a modern industrial system, expand the real economy, and develop the digital economy.
The Party has improved its macroeconomic governance, adopted innovative ideas and approaches in macroeconomic regulation, shown greater initiative in macro policymaking, and implemented a proactive fiscal policy and a prudent monetary policy. The Party has pressed forward with efforts to streamline administration, delegate power, improve regulation, and upgrade services. Steps have been taken to ensure food, energy, and resource security as well as the security of industrial and supply chains. The Party has worked to ensure that the financial sector better serves the real economy, strengthened financial regulation across the board, taken measures to prevent and defuse economic and financial risks, and stepped up market supervision and anti-monopoly regulation. The Party has also taken measures to prevent runaway expansion of capital, maintain order in the market, galvanize market entities of all types, especially micro, small, and medium enterprises, and protect the rights and interests of workers and consumers.
The Party has introduced a coordinated regional development strategy. It has promoted coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the development of the Yangtze Economic Belt and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, integrated development in the Yangtze River Delta, ecological protection and high-quality development in the Yellow River basin, and high-quality construction of Xiongan New Area to a high standard. The Party has prompted a new phase in the large-scale development of the western region, new breakthroughs in the revitalization of the northeast, and high-quality development of the central region, and encouraged the eastern region to accelerate its pace of modernization. The Party has provided assistance for improving working and living conditions in old revolutionary base areas, areas with large ethnic minority populations, border areas, and impoverished areas. It has promoted a new, people-centered type of urbanization and improved urban planning, development, and management.
The Party has always made issues relating to agriculture, rural areas, and rural residents a top priority. It has introduced a rural revitalization strategy and accelerated the modernization of agriculture and rural areas. It has adopted a food crop production strategy based on farmland management and the application of technology, implemented the strictest possible system for the protection of farmland, and worked to increase self-reliance in seed technology and ensure that China’s seed resources are self-supporting and under better control. With all these efforts, the Chinese people’s food supply has remained firmly in their own hands.
Since the 18th National Congress, our economic development has become much more balanced, coordinated, and sustainable. China’s GDP has exceeded 100 trillion yuan, while per capita GDP has topped US$10,000. China’s economic strength, scientific and technological capabilities, and composite national strength have reached new heights, and our economy is now on a path of higher-quality development that is more efficient, equitable, sustainable, and secure.
4. Deepening reform and opening up
After the third plenary session of the 11th Central Committee, China’s reform and opening up embarked on a remarkable course and scored achievements that captured the attention of the world. Nevertheless, as practice changed, certain deep-seated institutional problems and impediments from vested interests became increasingly evident. China’s reform thus entered a critical phase fraught with tough challenges.
The Central Committee is keenly aware that evolving in practice, freeing minds, and reform and opening up are processes without end. Reform is always ongoing and can never be completed, and halting or reversing course would get us nowhere. Therefore, it is imperative to deepen reform in all areas through greater political courage and wisdom, to be well prepared to tackle tough issues and brave risky areas, to make institutional development a priority, to increase interconnectivity and synergy between reforms in different sectors, and to clear a path forward for reform by cutting away institutional barriers on all sides.
At its third plenary session, the 18th Central Committee made arrangements for reforms of economic, political, cultural, and social systems and those pertaining to ecological conservation, national defense and the armed forces, and Party building. It defined the overall objectives, key strategic targets, ranking of priorities, focal points, working mechanisms, methods of implementation, timetable, and roadmap for the endeavor of comprehensively deepening reform.
The third plenary session of the 11th Central Committee was an epoch-making event that ushered in the new period of reform, opening up, and socialist modernization. In the same way, the third plenary session of the 18th Central Committee was also of epoch-making significance. It enabled the transformation of reform from trials and breakthroughs limited to certain areas into an integrated drive being advanced across the board, and thus marked the beginning of a new stage in China’s reform and opening up.
The Party has worked to ensure that reform stays on the right path, that it is inspired and guided by the objectives of promoting social fairness and justice and improving people’s wellbeing, that it follows a problem-oriented approach, and that it focuses on further freeing minds, unleashing and developing the productive forces, and unlocking and boosting social dynamism. The Party has strengthened top-level design and overall planning, pursued reform in a more systemic, holistic, and coordinated manner, stimulated people’s creativity, and deepened and consolidated reforms in key areas.
The Party has taken swift yet steady steps to promote and deepen reform in all areas, scoring multiple breakthroughs in the process. As we have gone from laying foundations and defining initial structures, to making overall progress and building momentum, to achieving systematic integration and efficient coordination, we have seen basic institutional frameworks put in place in various areas, and witnessed historic, systemic, and holistic transformation in multiple fields.
The Central Committee is keenly aware that opening the door brings progress, while closing it leaves one behind. For China’s development to gain the upper hand, seize the initiative, and have a good future, it is essential that we follow the tide of economic globalization, leverage the strengths of China’s massive market, and pursue a more proactive opening up strategy. Adhering to the principle of achieving shared growth through consultation and collaboration, China has promoted high-quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). We have advanced a large number of cooperation projects with significant implications for fueling economic development and improving people’s lives in countries along the BRI routes, and worked to build the BRI into an initiative of peace, prosperity, openness, green development, and innovation that brings different civilizations closer, and a widely welcomed public good and platform for international cooperation in today’s world.
While ensuring that its efforts to open up internally and externally reinforce each other and better integrating the “bringing in” and “going global” strategies, China has worked to promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, build a globally oriented network of high-standard free trade zones, including pilot free trade zones and the Hainan Free Trade Port, and expand opening up on the institutional level in terms of rules, regulations, management, and standards. Through these efforts, we are advancing opening up on a larger scale, across more areas, and in greater depth, and establishing an open economy that is diverse, balanced, secure, and efficient and brings benefit to all. In this way, China is consistently building new and greater strengths in international economic cooperation and competition.
Since its 18th National Congress, the Party has consistently promoted broader and deeper reform across the board. The system of socialism with Chinese characteristics is now more mature and well-defined, and the modernization of China’s system and capacity for governance has reached a higher level. The cause of the Party and the country now radiates with fresh vitality.
5. Advancing political work
Since the launch of reform and opening up, the Party has led the people in keeping to the path of socialist political advancement with Chinese characteristics and developing socialist democracy, and has achieved substantial progress in this regard. Learning lessons from successes and failures in political development both at home and abroad, the Party has become deeply aware of the following: to have full confidence in the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics, we must first and foremost foster strong confidence in the political system of socialism with Chinese characteristics; to promote socialist democracy and socialist political advancement, we must ensure that the political system of socialism with Chinese characteristics is deeply rooted in China; and mechanical copying of the political systems of other countries will get us nowhere, and could potentially lead our country to ruin.
We must uphold the unity between the Party’s leadership, the running of the country by the people, and law-based governance. Efforts must be made to actively develop whole-process people’s democracy, and advance comprehensive, extensive, and coordinated development of the systems and institutions through which the people run the country. We must establish diverse, unimpeded, and well-organized democratic channels, diversify forms of democracy, and expand the people’s orderly political participation at all levels and in various fields, so as to ensure that China’s governance and institutions in all sectors give full expression to the will of the people, protect their rights and interests, and spark their creativity. We must remain on guard against the erosive influence of Western trends of political thought, including the so-called constitutionalism, alternation of power between political parties, and separation of powers.
With a view to maintaining the long-term governance of the Party and the long-term stability of the country, the 19th Central Committee at its fourth plenary session outlined an overall plan for upholding and improving the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and modernizing China’s system and capacity for governance, and also laid out major plans for upholding and improving the fundamental, basic, and important systems that underpin socialism with Chinese characteristics.
The Central Committee has stressed the importance of upholding the principal position of the people and ensuring their law-based participation in democratic elections, consultations, decision-making, management, and oversight.
The Party has worked to uphold and improve the system of people’s congresses. We have supported and safeguarded the right of the people to exercise state power through people’s congresses, supported people’s congresses in exercising their statutory powers of enacting laws, conducting oversight, making decisions, and appointing and removing officials, and conducted decisive investigations of vote rigging and election bribery cases. Through these efforts, we have upheld the authority and dignity of the system of people’s congresses, and given full play to its role as China’s fundamental political system.
The Party has worked to uphold and improve the system of CPC-led multiparty cooperation and political consultation, and to improve systems through which the central committees of other political parties conduct special oversight over the implementation of major decisions and plans and make suggestions directly to the CPC Central Committee. We have stepped up institutional development in promoting the CPPCC’s role as a specialized consultative body, advanced extensive, multilevel, and institutionalized development of socialist consultative democracy, and put in place a system of consultative democracy with Chinese characteristics.
The Party has worked to consolidate government and improve democracy at the primary level, and to increase transparency in administration in order to protect the people’s rights to be informed, to participate, to be heard, and to exercise oversight.
We have further reformed Party and government institutions to achieve thorough and systematic restructuring of their functions. In this process, we have followed the principles of upholding the Party’s overall leadership, committing to a people-centered approach, promoting greater optimization, coordination, and efficiency, and ensuring law-based governance in all dimensions.
To be Continued…