Keep the Great Banner of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics High and Work Together to Create a Modern Socialist Nation in Every Way
Full Text Report to the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China
October 16, 2022
On behalf of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), I will now deliver a report to the 20th National Congress.
The 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China is a meeting of great importance. It takes place at a critical time as the entire Party and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups embark on a new journey to build China into a modern socialist country in all respects and advance toward the Second Centenary Goal.
The theme of this Congress is holding high the great banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics, fully implementing the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, carrying forward the great founding spirit of the Party, staying confident and building strength, upholding fundamental principles and breaking new ground, forging ahead with enterprise and fortitude, and striving in unity to build a modern socialist country in all respects and advance the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts.
Since its founding a century ago, the Communist Party of China has taken a remarkable journey. Our Party has dedicated itself to achieving lasting greatness for the Chinese nation and committed itself to the noble cause of peace and development for humanity. Our responsibility is unmatched in importance, and our mission is glorious beyond compare. It is imperative that all of us in the Party never forget our original aspiration and founding mission, that we always stay modest, prudent, and hard-working, and that we have the courage and ability to carry on our fight. We must remain confident in our history, exhibit greater historical initiative, and write an even more magnificent chapter for socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.
I. The Work of the Past Five Years and the Great Changes in the First Decade of the New Era
The five years since the 19th National Congress have been truly momentous and extraordinary. The Party Central Committee has pursued a strategy of national rejuvenation amid global changes of a magnitude not seen in a century. It has convened seven plenary sessions, at which it adopted decisions and resolutions on major issues such as revising China’s Constitution, deepening reform of Party and state institutions, upholding and improving the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and modernizing China’s system and capacity for governance, formulating the 14th Five-Year Plan for Economic and Social Development and the Long-Range Objectives through the Year 2035, and conducting a thorough review of the Party’s major achievements and historical experience over the past century. At these sessions, major strategic plans were also made for advancing the cause of the Party and the country. The Central Committee has brought together the entire Party, the military, and the Chinese people and led them in effectively responding to grave, intricate international developments and a series of immense risks and challenges. With great effort and determination, we have steadily advanced socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.
Over the past five years, we have continued to strengthen the overall leadership of the Party and the centralized, unified leadership of the Central Committee. We have devoted great energy to finishing building a moderately prosperous society in all respects. We have fully and faithfully applied the new development philosophy on all fronts, focused on promoting high-quality development, and worked to create a new pattern of development. We have pursued reform at a swift and steady pace, made solid progress in developing whole-process people’s democracy, and advanced law-based governance across all fields of endeavor. We have actively developed advanced socialist culture. We have ensured and improved public wellbeing as a matter of priority and pooled resources to wage a critical battle against poverty. We have made a big push to enhance ecological conservation. We have worked with firm resolve to safeguard national security, fended off and defused major risks, and ensured social stability. We have devoted great energy to modernizing our national defense and the armed forces. We have conducted major-country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics on all fronts. And we have made sweeping efforts to advance the great new project of Party building.
We celebrated the centenary of the Communist Party of China and the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. We adopted the third resolution concerning the Party’s history, organized Party-wide activities to study Party history, and inaugurated the Museum of the Communist Party of China. We called upon all Party members to study and apply the great founding spirit of the Party, and we encouraged them to create a brighter future by staying true to the Party’s founding mission with greater resolve and purpose on the new journey ahead.
In responding to the sudden outbreak of Covid-19, we put the people and their lives above all else, worked to prevent both imported cases and domestic resurgences, and tenaciously pursued a dynamic zero-Covid policy. In launching an all-out people’s war to stop the spread of the virus, we have protected the people’s health and safety to the greatest extent possible and made tremendously encouraging achievements in both epidemic response and economic and social development.
In the face of turbulent developments in Hong Kong, the central government exercised its overall jurisdiction over the special administrative region as prescribed by China’s Constitution and the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The Law on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region was formulated and put into effect, ensuring that Hong Kong is administered by patriots. Thanks to these moves, order has been restored in Hong Kong, marking a major turn for the better in the region. Further headway has been made in developing the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and supporting Hong Kong and Macao in growing their economies, improving living standards, and maintaining stability.
In response to separatist activities aimed at “Taiwan independence” and gross provocations of external interference in Taiwan affairs, we have resolutely fought against separatism and countered interference, demonstrating our resolve and ability to safeguard China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and to oppose “Taiwan independence.” We have strengthened our strategic initiative for China’s complete reunification and consolidated commitment to the one-China principle within the international community.
Confronted with drastic changes in the international landscape, especially external attempts to blackmail, contain, blockade, and exert maximum pressure on China, we have put our national interests first, focused on internal political concerns, and maintained firm strategic resolve. We have shown a fighting spirit and a firm determination to never yield to coercive power. Throughout these endeavors, we have safeguarded China’s dignity and core interests and kept ourselves well-positioned for pursuing development and ensuring security.
Over the past five years, our Party has rallied the people and led them in solving a great number of problems that had long gone unsolved, securing many accomplishments that hold major future significance, and achieving impressive advances in the cause of the Party and the country.
Ten years have passed since the Party’s 18th National Congress. The past decade marked three major events of great immediate importance and profound historical significance for the cause of the Party and the people: We embraced the centenary of the Communist Party of China; we ushered in a new era of socialism with Chinese characteristics; and we eradicated absolute poverty and finished building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, thus completing the First Centenary Goal. These were historic feats-feats accomplished by the Communist Party of China and the Chinese people striving in unity, feats that will be forever recorded in the Chinese nation’s history, and feats that will profoundly influence the world.
A decade ago this was the situation we faced:
Great achievements had been secured in reform, opening up, and socialist modernization, and notable advances had been made in the great new project of Party building.
All this had created solid foundations, favorable conditions, and key underpinnings for our continued progress.
At the same time, however, a number of prominent issues and problems-some of which had been building for years and others which were just emerging-demanded urgent action.
Inside the Party, there were many issues with respect to upholding the Party’s leadership, including a lack of clear understanding and effective action as well as a slide toward weak, hollow, and watered-down Party leadership in practice. Some Party members and officials were wavering in their political conviction.
Despite repeated warnings, pointless formalities, bureaucratism, hedonism, and extravagance persisted in some localities and departments. Privilege-seeking mindsets and practices posed a serious problem, and some deeply shocking cases of corruption had been uncovered.
China’s economy was beset by acute structural and institutional problems, Development was imbalanced, uncoordinated, and unsustainable, and the traditional development model could no longer keep us moving forward. Some deep-seated problems in institutions and barriers built by vested interests were becoming more and more apparent.
Some people lacked confidence in the socialist political system with Chinese characteristics, and, all too often, we saw laws being ignored or not being strictly enforced.
Misguided patterns of thinking such as money worship, hedonism, egocentricity, and historical nihilism were common, and online discourse was rife with disorder. All this had a grave impact on people’s thinking and the public opinion environment.
Our work to ensure the people’s wellbeing was fraught with weak links. Tightening resource and environmental constraints and environmental pollution were pronounced.
The systems for safeguarding national security were inadequate, and our capacity for responding to various major risks was insufficient. Many shortcomings were affecting the modernization of national defense and the military.
The institutions and mechanisms for implementing the policy of One Country, Two Systems in Hong Kong and Macao were not well-developed, and China faced grave challenges to its national security.
These were just some of the problems we faced. Back then, many people, both in and outside of our Party, were worried about the future of the Party and the country.
In the face of these acute problems and challenges, which undermined the Party’s long-term governance, the security and stability of the country, and the wellbeing of the people, the Party Central Committee fully assessed the situation, made resolute decisions, and took firm steps. Under its leadership, the entire Party, the military, and the Chinese people were brought together. We rolled up our sleeves and got down to work, forging ahead with resolve to carry out a great struggle with many new features of our times.
Over the past decade, we have stayed committed to Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Theory of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development, and we have fully implemented the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era as well as the Party’s basic line and basic policy. We have adopted a number of strategic measures, developed a range of transformative practices, and made a series of breakthroughs and landmark advances. We have withstood risks, challenges, and trials in the political, economic, ideological, and natural domains, secured historic achievements and seen historic changes in the cause of the Party and the country, and taken China on a new journey toward building a modern socialist country in all respects.
-We have established the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. In doing so, we have laid out the basic policy for upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics, put forward a series of new ideas, new thinking, and new strategies on national governance, and achieved a new breakthrough in adapting Marxism to the Chinese context and the needs of our times. We have endeavored to use this new theory to arm ourselves intellectually, guide our practice, and advance our work. This theory provides us with fundamental guidance for advancing the cause of our Party and our country in the new era.
-We have strengthened Party leadership in all respects. We have made clear that the leadership of the Communist Party of China is the defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the greatest strength of the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics, that the Party is the highest force of political leadership, and that upholding the centralized, unified leadership of the Party Central Committee is the highest political principle. We have made systematic improvements to the Party’s leadership systems. All Party members have become more conscious of the need to maintain political integrity, think in big-picture terms, follow the leadership core, and keep in alignment with the central Party leadership. They have become more purposeful in closely following the Party Central Committee in thinking, political stance, and action, and they have continued to improve their capacity for political judgment, thinking, and implementation. All this has ensured the Party Central Committee’s authority and its centralized, unified leadership and guaranteed that the Party fulfills its core role of exercising overall leadership and coordinating the efforts of all sides. Now, our Marxist party of over 96 million members enjoys greater unity and solidarity than ever.
-We have developed well-conceived and complete strategic plans for advancing the cause of the Party and the country in the new era. We have put forward the Chinese Dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and proposed promoting national rejuvenation through a Chinese path to modernization. We have made well-coordinated efforts to advance our great struggle, our great project, our great cause, and our great dream. We have adopted the Five-Sphere Integrated Plan and the Four-Pronged Comprehensive Strategy as well as the general principle of pursuing progress while ensuring stability, and we have worked to both pursue development and safeguard security. We have identified the principal contradiction facing Chinese society as that between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people’s ever-growing needs for a better life, and we have made it clear that closing this gap should be the focus of all our initiatives. With these efforts, we have made constant progress in enriching and developing a new form of human advancement.
-We have achieved moderate prosperity, the millennia-old dream of the Chinese nation, through persistent hard work. With this, we have elevated China to a higher historical starting point in development. By galvanizing the entire nation to carry out targeted poverty alleviation, we have won the largest battle against poverty in human history. A total of 832 impoverished counties and close to 100 million poor rural residents have been lifted out of poverty, and, among them, more than 9.6 million poverty-stricken people have been relocated from inhospitable areas. We have, once and for all, resolved the problem of absolute poverty in China, making significant contributions to the cause of global poverty reduction.
-We have put forward and applied a new development philosophy, worked hard to promote high-quality development, and pushed to foster a new pattern of development. We have carried out supply-side structural reform, formulated a series of major regional strategies important to China’s overall development, and brought about a historic rise in China’s economic strength.
In the past decade, China’s GDP has grown from 54 trillion yuan to 114 trillion yuan to account for 18.5 percent of the world economy, up 7.2 percentage points. China has remained the world’s second largest economy, and its per capita GDP has risen from 39,800 yuan to 81,000 yuan. It ranks first in the world in terms of grain output, and it has ensured food and energy security for its more than 1.4 billion people. The number of permanent urban residents has grown by 11.6 percentage points to account for 64.7 percent of the population. China’s manufacturing sector is the largest in the world, as are its foreign exchange reserves. China has built the world’s largest networks of high-speed railways and expressways and made major achievements in building airports, ports, and water conservancy, energy, information, and other infrastructure.
We have accelerated efforts to build our self-reliance and strength in science and technology, with nationwide R&D spending rising from 1 trillion yuan to 2.8 trillion yuan, the second highest in the world. Our country is now home to the largest cohort of R&D personnel in the world.
We have grown stronger in basic research and original innovation, made breakthroughs in some core technologies in key fields, and boosted emerging strategic industries. We have witnessed major successes on multiple fronts, including manned spaceflight, lunar and Martian exploration, deep sea and deep earth probes, supercomputers, satellite navigation, quantum information, nuclear power technology, new energy technology, airliner manufacturing, and biomedicine. China has joined the ranks of the world’s innovators.
-We have comprehensively deepened reform with tremendous political courage. We have carried out critical tasks and enhanced top-level design for reform. We have dared to brave uncharted waters, take on tough problems, navigate potential dangers, and face new issues and challenges. We have broken the shackles of stale thinking, torn down barriers erected by vested interests, and removed institutional obstacles in all areas. This has enabled us to put in place foundational institutional frameworks in all sectors, to achieve historic, systemic, and holistic transformations in many fields, and to complete a new round of reform in Party and state institutions. The system of socialism with Chinese characteristics has become more mature and well-defined, and China’s system and capacity for governance have been further modernized.
-We have pursued a more proactive strategy of opening up. We have worked to build a globally-oriented network of high-standard free trade areas and accelerated the development of pilot free trade zones and the Hainan Free Trade Port. As a collaborative endeavor, the Belt and Road Initiative has been welcomed by the international community both as a public good and a cooperation platform.
China has become a major trading partner for more than 140 countries and regions, it leads the world in total volume of trade in goods, and it is a major destination for global investment and a leading country in outbound investment.
Through these efforts, we have advanced a broader agenda of opening up across more areas and in greater depth.
-We have kept to the path of socialist political advancement with Chinese characteristics. We have comprehensively developed whole-process people’s democracy, made all-around progress in improving the institutions, standards, and procedures of our socialist democracy, and advanced socialist consultative democracy by way of extensive participation. We have reinforced the foundations that undergird the people’s running of the country, injected fresh vitality into democracy at the community level, and consolidated and expanded the patriotic united front.
We have made new accomplishments in promoting ethnic unity and progress, fully implemented the Party’s basic policy on religious affairs, and provided better protections for human rights. We have intensified efforts to advance socialist rule of law in our country, and a comprehensive framework for law-based governance has taken shape.
We have sped up work on developing the system of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics. We have made major progress in reforming the judicial system, thus providing more effective protection for social fairness and justice. These efforts have opened new ground for advancing the rule of law in China.
-We have established and upheld a foundational system for ensuring the guiding role of Marxism in the ideological domain. The Party’s new theory for the new era has been embraced by the people, the core socialist values are resonating with the public, fine traditional Chinese culture is undergoing creative transformation and development, cultural programs are flourishing, and the online environment has seen continuous improvement. All this has brought overarching and fundamental changes in China’s ideological landscape.
We celebrated the 90th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Liberation Army, the 40th anniversary of the launch of reform and opening up, the 70th anniversary of victory in the Chinese People’s War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression and the global war against fascism, and the 70th anniversary of the Chinese People’s Volunteers’ departure for Korea to resist US aggression and aid Korea.
The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics were a great success.
Our young people are filled with greater optimism and enterprise, and there is a notably stronger sense of cultural confidence and a higher level of morale throughout the Party and the nation.
-We have implemented a people-centered philosophy of development, We have worked continuously to ensure people’s access to childcare, education, employment, medical services, elderly care, housing, and social assistance, thus bringing about an all-around improvement in people’s lives.
China’s life expectancy has reached 78.2 years, its per capita disposable annual income has risen from 16,500 yuan to 35,100 yuan, and more than 13 million urban jobs have been created each year on average over the past 10 years.
We have built the largest education, social security, and healthcare systems in the world. These achievements have allowed us to make historic strides in making education universally available, bring 1.04 billion people under the coverage of basic old-age insurance, and ensure basic medical insurance for 95 percent of the population.
Timely adjustments have been made to the childbirth policy. More than 42 million housing units in run-down urban areas and more than 24 million dilapidated rural houses have been rebuilt, marking a significant improvement in housing conditions in both urban and rural areas. The number of internet users has reached 1.03 billion. We have ensured a more complete and lasting sense of fulfillment, happiness, and security for our people, and we have made further progress in achieving common prosperity for all.
-We have acted on the idea that lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets. We have persisted with a holistic and systematic approach to conserving and improving mountain, water, forest, farmland, grassland, and desert ecosystems, and we have ensured stronger ecological conservation and environmental protection across the board, in all regions, and at all times. China’s ecological conservation systems have been improved, the critical battle against pollution has been advanced, and solid progress has been made in promoting green, circular, and low-carbon development.
This has led to historic, transformative, and comprehensive changes in ecological and environmental protection and has brought us bluer skies, greener mountains, and cleaner waters. -Xinhua
(To be Continued)