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Russian president backs China's Silk Road proposal
By ZHANG YUNBI ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-04-09 04:53:13

Russian President Vladimir Putin has voiced support for China's Silk Road Economic Belt initiative, which is aimed at reviving the ancient Eurasian trading route.

Putin told visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in the Kremlin on Tuesday that Moscow supports the initiative, proposed by President Xi Jinping, and "steadfastly supports China's efforts in championing core interests".

An official release issued after an earlier meeting between Wang and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov said both countries are ready to "proactively explore" cooperation on the Silk Road plan and Russia's idea of creating a "passage" between Asia and Europe and integrating Eurasian economies.

Countries including Russia and Central Asian nations have shown increasing interest in the Silk Road Economic Belt, proposed by Xi in 2013.

Xing Guangcheng, a senior scholar at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the consensus on Tuesday indicates the two countries are "taking a tangible step forward".

They are shifting from preliminary supportive language for each other to joint efforts in initiating working-level liaison on the two concepts, Xing said.

In late March, the State Council authorized a landmark document — "Vision and Actions on Jointly Building the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road—to be issued, outlining the blueprints.

At his meeting with Putin, Wang suggested "docking" the Chinese and Russian initiatives "in order to tackle new changes in the international and regional situation".

Wang told a joint news conference that Russia's "look East" policy and China's accelerated westward openings "have created historic opportunities for docking the two countries' development strategies".

Li Hui, China's ambassador to Russia, said in a speech to university students in Moscow in February that "the Belt and Road" could meet bilateral cooperation programs halfway, such as Sino-Russian oil and gas pipelines and China's participation in the development of Russia's Far East.

Yang Cheng, deputy director of the Center for Russian Studies at East China Normal University, said the bilateral readiness on "docking" shows that Russia has a deeper understanding of the strategic benefit to come.

Putin also said he expects that Xi will visit Moscow in May for celebrations marking the 70th anniversary of victory in World War II.

Wang, who laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Moscow's Red Square earlier in the day, said

the 70th anniversary of victory in WWII is an opportunity to strengthen coordination on international affairs and to uphold mutual interests.

Both countries agreed after the foreign ministers' discussions that they "have both the duty and obligation to support each other" when they host the commemorations jointly or separately, in order to remember history, inspire following generations and better ensure world peace.

Xinhua contributed to this story.

Russian president backs China's Silk Road proposal -
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Chinese firm wins $600m port construction contract in Ghana

ACCRA - China Harbor Engineering Company (CHEC) has won the bid to construct a new Free Port in Atuabo, 326 km west of the capital.

At the end of the bidding process to select main contractor for Atuabo Free Port (AFP), officials of CHEC and Atuabo Free Ports signed an agreement late March to make the Chinese firm the main engineers for the free port project.

External Affairs Officer of AFP, Philomena Kuzoe told Xinhua over the telephone that CHEC will construct the $600 million port which AFP is to develop and operate in Atuabo, where Ghana's first gas processing infrastructure has just been completed by SINOPEC Petroleum of China.

Seth Terkper, and Murtala Mohammed, Deputy Minister for Trade were present during the signing of the agreement for the deep water hydrocarbon logistics center.

The Chinese Ambassador to Ghana Sun Baohong and other officials from China and the Ghana Investment Promotion Center witnessed the signing ceremony.

The port with an 18.5m deep channel and three quays of varying depths from 16.5m; 12m and 9m, clear activity zones will provide an Offshore Logistics, Subsea Fabrication, Rig and Vessel Repair, Business Technology Park and General Business Support Infrastructure.

The private sector led facility initiated by LONRHO aims at serving the West African sub-region's offshore oil and gas industry and a regional hub supporting the activities of not only the upstream oil and gas companies but also the service companies that support them.

The project is a joint Venture including a 10 percent free carry shareholding for the government of Ghana and a 35 percent shares to be owned by state owned enterprises (SOEs) while AFP owns the other shares.

There will be no demand for government to guarantee the financing of the project, the project partners said.

According to Kuzoe, although CHEC will be the main contractors, there would be some Ghanaian firms working as sub-contractors in the project which is expected to generate at least 1,000 jobs.

"Construction is expected to commence in the third quarter of this year and be completed in 25 months," she disclosed.

After the discovery of oil in commercial quantities in Ghana for the first time in 2007, the country which now produces over 100,000 barrels of oil per day (100,000 bopd) from the Jubilee field is also in the process of commencing oil production from other fields that have been appraised or are being appraised.

The government seeks to turn the nascent oil sector into a booming industry that will catalyze economic growth and job creation.
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CPC releases document to intensify political education

BEIJING - The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee on Sunday released a document on Party school work, urging efforts to intensify ideological and political education among its 88 million members.

The Party schools' work forms an important part of the CPC's work and the schools play a vital role in improving the Party's ruling capacity, said the document adopted at a meeting of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee on Nov. 23.

"To realize the goal of building a moderately prosperous society and the Chinese dream of great national rejuvenation, the key is to mould a troop of officials that are as strong as iron in belief, faith, discipline and sense of responsibility," President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, said at a two-day meeting on Party schools' word, which closed on Saturday.

In the face of fast-changing international situation and an arduous task of reform at home, the CPC's governance is going through unprecedented tests, said an unidentified official with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee.

The Party schools assume the task of "supplementing calcium and strengthening bones" for Party officials, and the work of Party schools should be strengthened, rather than weakened, the official said.

The document noted that the fundamental principle for the Party schools is to adhere to the "right political direction," strictly observe the Party's political discipline, rules and regulations and maintain a high degree of conformity with the CPC Central Committee in ideology and action.

It stressed the Party schools should be run in consistent with the CPC belief, and all teaching and research work must be conducted in accordance with decisions and arrangements of the CPC Central Committee.

"It is the first time for the CPC to put forward clearly the Party schools' fundamental principle in the document," said the official. "The move is aimed at warning Party schools not to swerve from the "right direction."

According to the document, the Party schools should strengthen the education of officials on the CPC's theories, especially the latest achievements in adapting Marxism to Chinese conditions.

Party officials should enhance their faith in the country's development path and the CPC's theories through studying Marxism in contemporary China, and learn to link theories with practice.

The document specified Party schools' courses on the Party's theories, history, ideals and beliefs.

Moreover, the document stressed that special attention should be paid to education on the Party constitution as well as its regulations and disciplines in the work of Party schools at all levels.

According to a survey conducted by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), courses on the Party constitution and other rules and regulations provided by Party schools only account for 2.5 percent of the total class hours.

The document also pointed out that Party schools should become a leading think tank for both government and the CPC, pushing forward generalization and innovation in theories in the new era, and deepening research on the country's major decisions and plans as well as hot social issues.

Senior leaders of the CPC should take the lead in giving lectures to Party school students, and leaders at the levels of province, city and county are required to give at least one lecture in local Party schools every year, according to the document.

It is one of the Party's good traditions for its leaders to go to the Party schools to give lessons, and such a practice can ensure the high quality of Party schools' teaching, said the official with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee.

Xi gave Party school students lessons for 19 times when he served as president of the Party School of the CPC Central Committee from 2007 to 2012.
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Political bureau members should not feel superior: Xi

BEIJING - Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, has warned comrades in the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee to avoid a sense of superiority regarding their power or status.

Xi made the remarks at a meeting of the Political Bureau held on Monday and Tuesday, during which members discussed measures to strengthen Party discipline and clean governance and reviewed the implementation of the "three stricts and three earnests" requirement.

The "three stricts and three earnests" is a series of requirements for officials to improve their lifestyles and work. It refers to being strict in morals, power and discipline, as well as honest in decisions, business and behavior.

Misconduct of former officials, including Zhou Yongkang, Bo Xilai, Xu Caihou, Guo Boxiong and Ling Jihua, showed that a Party member might as well loose his or her Party spirit, a generalized term to refer qualification of a Party member, if they relax self-discipline.

"By seriously investigating their misconduct and punishing them accordingly, the Party honors its responsibility to itself, to the country, the people, and history," said a news release issued after the meeting.

"The Party spirit does not grow with ages, rather, it requires members to constantly improve and temper themselves," it said.

According to the news release, Xi urged Political Bureau members to adhere to their Party spirit in both public and private matters, and to strengthen self discipline.

They should also encourage and welcome supervision from subordinates and people around them, and execute Party discipline and rules without any compromise, Xi was quoted as saying

Moreover, Xi urged Political Bureau members to strictly educate and supervise their children and other family members as well as subordinates, and to rectify their problems in a timely manner.

Xi also urged senior leaders to stick to the correct political direction and be loyal to the Party.

Xi said members of the Political Bureau must have a firm belief in Marxism, socialism and communism, and must make efforts unswervingly for the ideal, no matter what difficulties or frustrations they suffer.

Political Bureau members must be persons of integrity and unite their words and deeds. They should have excellent political quality, noble moral character, stay away from vulgar taste and set good examples for other cadres and the general public, according to Xi.

They must hold the idea of serving the people whole-heartedly, always think about the state and the people, and devote themselves to the cause of the Party and the people, Xi said.

Political Bureau members must be politically intelligent and capable, stay in the right strategic and ideological direction, and adhere to moral integrity, so as to stand the test of major challenges, Xi added.

Xi also stressed Political Bureau members should make sure that sectors they are in charge of resolutely follow the Party's guidelines, policies and major decisions and stay in line with the CPC Central Committee.

If Political Bureau members spot transgressions against the "three stricts and three earnests," they should not hesitate to point them out and demand correction, Xi said.

Participants to the meeting reviewed the practices and successful experiences for improving the Political Bureau's work style over the past three years, according to the news release.

All the members earnestly exchanged their opinions and carried out self examinations. They agreed that the Party's intensive anti-graft campaigns have effectively curbed undesirable work styles. Achievements have been made in deterring officials from becoming corrupted, said the release.

However, the conference concluded that the Party still faces challenges in restoring and carrying forward fine traditions, preventing relapse and fixing underlying problems, it said.
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Former Beijing deputy Party chief expelled for bribery, criticism

Lyu Xiwen, former deputy Party chief in Beijing, has been expelled from the Party and removed from her post for serious disciplinary violations that included accepting bribes and making groundless criticisms of the party, the Communist Party of China's watchdog said on Tuesday.

Lyu also failed to follow the central authority's major policies, formed cliques and lived a luxurious lifestyle, the Party's Discipline Inspection Commission said.

She was accused of improperly appointing Party officers, interfering in personnel matters, using her job to gain benefits for her relatives' business projects, and accepting bribes to benefit other enterprises.

Lyu also was accused of living a luxurious lifestyle as she was frequently seen attending private clubs and entertainment venues, the commission said.

In November, Lyu was placed under investigation for suspected "serious disciplinary violations," becoming the first high-ranking official in the capital under such a probe since the 18th Party Congress in 2012, when the new leadership took office.
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Chinese FM's visit to Africa attests to strong China-Africa ties

BEIJING -- Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who just concluded his visit to four African countries, has for three consecutive years chosen Africa as the destination for his first trip abroad each year. This shows the great importance China attaches to the vast African continent.

This year's trip took Wang to Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique and Namibia from Jan. 30 to Feb. 6. For 26 consecutive years, Chinese foreign ministers have visited Africa at the beginning of the year.

"Choosing Africa as the destination for the foreign minister's first trip each year is a fine tradition of China's diplomacy. It shows the importance attached to China-Africa ties," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said before the visit.


Wang's visit to Africa came at a critical moment against the backdrop of faltering global economic recovery, and the economic slowdown faced by African countries.

Indeed, China, the world's largest developing country, and Africa, a continent home to the largest number of developing countries, whose ties have been strengthened by shared historical experiences and struggles, had always been a community of common destiny.

"As a faithful friend of Africa, we insist that Africa must get out of its difficult situation through its own development," Wang said when meeting with his Malawian counterpart George T. Chaponda.

The international financial crisis, especially falling commodity prices, has adversely affected the African economy.

China, whose economy grew strongly for over 30 years and still registers a growth rate of 6.9 percent faced with the pressure of slowing global economic growth, remains the biggest driver of growth for the global economy, Wang said.

China is committed to African countries with their poverty alleviation efforts by helping improve their infrastructure, offering agricultural technology and equipment to support farmers and enhance their productivity, and supporting the industrial development of the continent.

China has provided African countries with loans worth over $20 billion since 2012 to support infrastructure, investment, small- and medium-sized enterprises, agriculture and manufacturing.

The Chinese government also rolled out about 900 assistance programs in Africa covering agriculture, health, education and other fields and offered training to over 30,000 local people since 2012.

The Chinese economy may be slowing down in its industrial and manufacturing sectors, but the growth in its consumption and services sector is still adequate to push growth in African countries which depend on trade with China, said Jonathan Stichbury from Pine Bridge Investments, a financial services advisory and wealth management firm in Nairobi, Kenya.


During his visit, Wang met leaders and foreign ministers in those four countries to discuss how to implement the outcomes of the Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), and to align priority cooperation areas and projects.

At the FOCAC summit in Johannesburg in December 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced the establishment of 10 major plans for China-Africa cooperation to help Africa accelerate industrialization and agricultural modernization, and strengthen infrastructure.

Xi also pledged to provide 60 billion dollars in financial assistance to Africa, including 10 billion dollars for a China-Africa production capacity cooperation fund.

These plans address the urgent needs of Africa and are consistent with the direction of African countries' development, Wang said in Malawi.

The 60-billion-dollar Chinese pledge for multi-faceted cooperation with Africa over the next three years is a major growth driver for Africa, Stichbury said.

Leaders of the four African countries, speaking highly of the 10 major plans proposed by President Xi, expressed their willingness to participate in the plans to strengthen bilateral cooperation, Wang told reporters in Windhoek, Namibia after wrapping up his visit.

The overall goal of the plans is to help Africa accelerate its industrialization and realize diversified development to enhance its capacity for self-development, so that the continent would no longer be affected by the fluctuation in international commodity prices, he said.
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Veteran journalist named new spokesman of China's top meeting of political advisors

A veteran journalist with long experience in international publicity will debut as the spokesman of China's top meeting of political advisors.

Wang Guoqing, 63, has been appointed the 14th spokesperson for the CPPCC annual session since the first news conference of the "two sessions" was held in 1983.

"Two Sessions" are the annual meetings of the National People's Congress (NPC), the country's top legislature, and the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), a meeting of political advisors including members of Communist Party of China, non-Communist parties and personages without party affiliation.

Wang graduated in English major from Shanghai International Studies University in the 1970s.

From 1978 to 2000, Wang worked for China Radio International, the State-owned international radio broadcaster, serving as chief correspondent in Washington, and head of the English department successively.

Since 2000, Wang worked in country's top publicity agencies, the State Council Information Office and the Publicity Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. In 2013, he became vice-chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Committee of the CPPCC.

As the first major event of the two sessions, the press conference will be under the spotlight of journalists. Some of the more than 3,200 journalists, including 1,000 foreign correspondents, registered for this year's two sessions will attend the news conference.

Wang will brief journalists on this year's CPPCC session and take questions at the event.

He admitted that being spokesman of CPPCC is "no easy job".

CPPCC members are from all walks of life and ethnic groups, the nine special committees under the CPPCC National Committee cover different areas including politics, culture and economics, which means the spokesman has to do a lot of preparation to understand each issue, said Wang.

Wang said during his preparation for the press conference, he collected more than 1,400 questions and consulted more than 60 government departments.

The press conference of the CPPCC will be held at the Great Hall of the People on Wednesday afternoon. The CPPCC session will open on Thursday, two days before the start of the NPC session.
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CPC membership becomes more diverse

In 1921, the Party had a mere 50 members, but now it has more than 88 million, resulting in higher standards and more applicants from a wide range of backgrounds. Peng Yining reports.

Editor's note: This is the fourth in a series of articles China Daily will publish in the next few days looking at the structure, history and influence of the Communist Party of China as it celebrates the 95th anniversary of its foundation.

Wen Qian feels that she is probably not a "typical" member of the Communist Party of China.

"In my opinion, a typical CPC member works for the government or at least a State-owned company, but I am a freelance worker," she said.

Since graduating in 2011, the 27-year-old ceramic artist has lived in Jingdezhen, the nation's ceramics capital, in Jiangxi province.

Because she doesn't have a danwei, or work unit, her membership was granted by the county-level Party organization in her home province of Jiangsu in East China.

People in China's artistic circles don't normally talk about politics, she said, adding that most of her friends don't know she's a Party member.

"My father has been maintaining my membership, including paying my membership dues. I have to be present at special times, such as the leadership transition, so I fly home to vote," she said.

Li Helin, deputy director of the Beijing Scientific Socialism Research Association, said that since the Party's founding in 1921, the membership has become more diverse, and more young people are joining, especially those with a high level of education or who work in industry.

Wen joined the CPC when she was a university freshman.

"Many students in my class applied, but only two or three out of 30 applicants were accepted in the first year," she said. "I was working in the student union. The others who were selected for membership were outstanding students."

The selection process was serious and intensely competitive. She had to produce reports about her studies and political ideas, including how she would use her knowledge to improve people's lives.

Wen's father and two older sisters are also CPC members. "They told me only the best can join," she said. "I was proud to be selected. It wasn't easy."

Rising level of education

In 1982, only 4 percent of the more than 4,000 county-level Party heads held bachelor's degrees or higher.

By the end of last year, 14.4 percent of the more than 500,000 Party village heads had been educated to undergraduate level or higher. Moreover, 44.3 percent of the Party's members have a bachelor's degree or higher, a rise from 30.7 percent in 2006, while the number of members age 35 and younger was 25.4 percent. In 2006, the number was 23.3 percent.

According to a report published on Thursday by the State Council Information Office, the proportion of female members has grown to 25.1 percent, from 19.7 percent in 2006.

Last year, the number of applications was 22.2 million, but "the selection process was stricter", and although the membership growth rate fell by 0.2 percent, the quality of applicants has risen and become more diverse, the report said.

Chen Chunhua joined the CPC as an 18-year-old high school student. She attended a university in China before studying political science in the United States, where she gained a master's degree and was awarded a doctorate this year.

"I didn't ask, but I believe that many of the Chinese students on campus when I was studying for my PhD in the US were Party members," she said. "That's because membership is usually given to outstanding people, who are more likely to have the opportunity to undertake higher education or study abroad."

Of the 800 students in her grade in high school, only two have been accepted as Party members, she said.

Beyond stereotypes

Chen said few of the non-Chinese people she met in the US knew much about the CPC, but even when they knew about her membership, she wasn't seen as a stereotypical "red communist".

"Most people were just curious, asking why I joined the CPC and whether I believed in the Party's ideology," she said. "Overall, my political choices didn't affect my life and study in the US."

Yu Mingcheng, a 33-year-old nurse at a hospital in Sichuan province, said joining the CPC brings no direct benefit. On the contrary, it means shouldering more responsibility.

He said CPC members are expected to be role models and to contribute to the community through volunteer work and donations to special causes and funds.

"Being selected means you are doing a good job and are distinguished among your peers. It is a badge of honor. I think that's why people from different fields want to join the CPC," he said.

Li said the growth of the CPC is one of the reasons for the diverse membership. By the end of last year, membership had risen to 88.76 million from just 50 in 1921.

"It is reasonable for such a large political party to have members from different backgrounds," Li said. "Diversity brings vitality to the Party and also presents challenges for the management of the world's biggest ruling party."
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Foreign observers voice praise

CPC success due to its drawing from practical experience, experts say

As the Communist Party of China celebrated its 95th birthday on Thursday, international observers marveled at its sustained vigor and its glorious achievements in the country's development. Since the Party was founded in 1921, it has kept up with the times, steering the country in the right direction, and it has thoroughly changed Chinese society.

Some observers said it is enjoyable to see that the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese government have made such tremendous achievements.

Italian Senate Speaker Pietro Grasso recently told Xinhua about the pleasure he took in seeing the progress made.

"I was quite impressed by what I saw when I visited China as senate speaker last October. Things there were completely different from 15 years before, when I had visited the country as a tourist," he said.

Susumu Yabuki, honorary professor of China studies at Japan's Yokohama City University, said: "After its birth, the Party led China in driving out the imperialists and in the struggle to gain independence in 1949. It then devoted itself to developing the economy and has made China a major economic power."

Experts attribute the Party's sustained success to the special attention it gives to updating its theories and guidelines by drawing on practical experience.

Nguyen Vinh Quang, a former minister at the Vietnamese embassy to China, said the Party has developed a socialist theoretical system with Chinese characteristics, which has guided the country's reform and opening-up and economic development.

Vichian Piakhong, vice-president of the Thai Young Chinese Chamber of Commerce, said the Party has repeatedly surpassed its former successes by adopting new notions and strategies as powerful tools, uniting and leading Chinese of all ethnic groups.

Ronnie Lins, director of China Studies Center in Brazil, noted that the Party has adopted the "new normal" economic theory and reset the pace and model of China's development. By shifting the focus from a high growth rate to more balanced, down-to-earth development goals, it will help China to advance steadily toward realizing the Chinese Dream.

Experts say the Communist Party of China has special advantages as a ruling party.

First, it is down-to-earth and ready to correct its mistakes.

The Party has made mistakes, but it has realized and corrected them, said Stephen Perry, chairman of Britain's 48 Group Club, a commercial group that has played a tremendous role in trade between China and Britain.

Second, the Party draws upon all useful opinions and keeps up with the times.

Perry spoke highly of its democratic centralism, noting that this has yielded great achievements, especially since 1978.

The Party listens to the people so its policies can reflect their minds, thus earning support from the public, Lins said.

Bambang Suryono, chief editor of Inhua Daily in Indonesia, said the Party is brave enough to embrace new things and evolve with the times.

The Party's successful guidance of China has not only helped change the country's destiny, but also advanced the common development of mankind, observers noted.

They laud China's leading role in pushing forward global trade, economic and investment cooperation, especially that among developing countries, which has benefited all countries.

Hans Hendrischke, a professor at the University of Sydney, said China is now widely participating in global value chains and is carrying out trade and investment cooperation with many countries. It has helped many countries overcome financial shortages and provided a huge market for its trade partners.

In recent years, the Party has put forward the concept of "the community of common destiny for all mankind" and the Belt and Road Initiative, with a view to seeking common development and benefiting the world.

If the initiative is carried out successfully, the countries involved will gain from the interconnection of infrastructure, bringing prosperity to the region.

The miracle of China's economic growth has become a model in development. With its rich experience, China can help other developing countries shake off poverty, Hendrischke said.

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Red stars at foreign companies

BEIJING - In the HR department at Jabil Huangpu, a cubicle is marked with a sign that reads "demonstration post of Party member" to honor a star employee.

The Communist Party of China (CPC), which celebrated its 95th birthday on Friday, is the world's largest political party, boasting 87 million members. CPC branches at foreign companies are not common, although the Party constitution stipulates that organizations of more than three members should have one. However, their numbers are growing.

Guangzhou-based Jabil Huangpu, established in 2001, is the first China subsidiary of Jabil, a global electronic parts supplier headquartered in the United States.

The company has 16,000 workers and six CPC branches, with a general branch in charge of them. Huang Lu, a manager in the company's HR department, is secretary of the company's general Party branch.

According to Huang, there are 106 members in the Jabil Huangpu general CPC branch, most in their mid-twenties. One third of them work in management, another third are key technicians, and the others are line workers.


"Although there are not many demonstration Party member posts, those who have them have played a role as star employees," Huang said of employees like the one with the sign in the HR department.

"We have set up three such posts, which have been recognized by our U.S. bosses," she said, adding Party members are competing for the honor, and non-Party-member employees strive to keep pace with them.

Those who earn the honor must be recommended by the Party branch and reviewed by the general branch. They may hold the title for a year, then undergo further evaluation to retain the recognition.

Over the past 19 years at the company, Mei Lianzhen has ascended through the ranks from assembly worker to manager of the manufacturing department. She is also a probationary CPC member at one of the company's party branches.

To join the CPC, a prospective member must send an application letter as well as recommendations from two Party members. After approval, he or she must complete a year-long probation period before becoming an official Party member.

"My recommenders and the Party branch leaders say I need to improve myself more because a CPC member has to be excellent in both work and life," she said.

The company's general Party branch is under the direct leadership of the CPC Guangzhou Development District Committee. In addition to organizing CPC training and meetings, the committee helps Party branches of private companies establish member archives and release CPC documents for study.

Companies from nearly 60 countries have investments in the Guangzhou Development District, contributing 95 percent of the district's economic output.

According to an official from the district's Party affairs, more than 300 CPC committees, general branches and branches, consisting of more than 6,500 Party members, have been established. All private companies in the district, including foreign ones, now have branches.

At Mitsubishi Electric (Guangzhou) Compressor Co., Ltd., the number of CPC members exceeds 100, and nearly half of the managers above the team leader level are CPC members at the Japanese company.

"The star employees show the excellence of Party members, and they are also recognized by the Japanese management," said Li Hui, deputy director of general affairs and also head of the company's Party committee.

The committee also leads the company's union to bring workers' complaints and claims to management.

"The Japanese managers respect our proposals very much, and usually will respond to us in a timely manner," she said.

Chen Kailong with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee said foreign companies are increasingly supportive of establishing Party branches because they help with the enforcement of Chinese laws and regulations and mediation in labor disputes.

Chen advised local Party organizations to help develop CPC branches in foreign companies by sending cadres to the branches and addressing their demands.
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Former senior officials expelled from CPC

A former senior official from Sichuan province, and another from Anhui, were expelled from the Party on Tuesday.

Li Yuncheng, former vice provincial governor in Sichuan and a member of the provincial Party committee, and Yang Zhenchao, former vice provincial governor in Anhui and a member of the provincial Party committee, have been expelled from the Communist Party of China, and removed from public office for embezzlement and abusing powers.

As announced by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, Li, the 61-year-old ex-governor of Sichuan, violated the Party's organizational discipline by jeopardizing inspections and refusing to disclose relevant information.

He also illegally possessed unlisted company shares and took advantage of his positions to seek benefits for others in exchange for bribes, the statement said.

Li joined the Party in 1975 as a rice paddy technician and spent most of his political career in Sichuan. He was promoted to the position of vice governor in 2011, but was removed shortly afterward due to investigations regarding violations of Party discipline.

In April 2016, CCDI announced that Li had "seriously violated" Party discipline and was subject to investigation. Two months later, the CPC Central Committee said in the statement that despite being a senior official, Li has lost his belief and violated the Party's code of conduct in a serious manner.

Yang from Anhui, 56, violated the Party's political and organizational discipline by refusing to cooperate in investigations, using public funds for private purposes, manipulating appointments of cadres for personal gain, and accepting bribes and kickbacks, the statement said.

He joined the party in 1983 and was a technocrat with degrees in management, engineering and economics. For nearly two decades, he worked in Anhui's largest State-owned mining enterprise, Tongling Nonferrous Metals Group Co.

In 2003, Yang's successful career in Tongling catapulted him to Anhui's top provincial government leadership position in charge of overseeing economic development.

By the time of his downfall in May 2016, he ranked as the third most influential out of six Anhui vice provincial governors.

The CCDI previously announced that Yang had "seriously violated" Party discipline. The CPC Central Committee said in the statement that despite being a senior official, Yang had lost his belief and violated the Party's code of conduct in a serious manner.
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Colleges vital for Party

Xi says goals of higher education must align with development plan for the nation

Colleges and universities should always adhere to the leadership of the Communist Party of China, President Xi Jinping told heads of domestic higher education institutions at a conference held in Beijing on Wednesday and Thursday.

Xi said the Party committees of higher education institutions should always take the helm, be responsible for making decisions and ensure that the institutions are developing in the right direction.

He also said Party committees at all levels across the country should attach great importance to the ideology of colleges and universities and make this one of their priorities. Party chiefs and members should visit the educational institutions frequently, communicate with teachers and students, take suggestions from them and answer their questions.

Xi stressed that China has its own history, unique culture and special current situation, which means that higher education institutions should walk on their own path and make themselves socialist institutions with Chinese characteristics.

He added that the goal of colleges and universities should be consistent with the whole country's development target.

Their work should serve the people, the Party's governance, the development of the socialist system with Chinese characteristics and reform and opening-up, as well as the socialist modernization drive.

Xi also said a teaching system for philosophy and social sciences with Chinese characteristics should be built as soon as possible.

More high-quality textbooks on these subjects should be compiled and published, and a more scientific and transparent system of evaluating the academic outcomes in these fields should be established, he said.

Liu Wei, president of Renmin University of China, who attended the conference, said he was inspired by Xi's remarks about "nurturing talent for the cause of socialism".

"Setting moral examples for students and helping students develop their talent should be the top priority of colleges and universities, as well as teachers," he said.

"To do that, philosophy and social sciences, with deep thought and humanistic concerns, can play a key role. We should reform the teaching and curriculum in these subjects, making the courses more attractive, persuasive and appealing to students," Liu added.

Peng Long, president of Beijing Foreign Studies University, said he was particularly impressed by Xi's words about college teachers' role as guides and instructors for students.

"From President Xi's remarks, we know that college and university teachers are very crucial to students' growth. And for this reason, teachers must have both excellent academic abilities and noble characters," Peng said.
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Top Party meeting agrees that five tasks will be given priority

China will forge ahead with its supply-side structural reform aimed at cutting excessive capacity and lowering enterprises' costs, moderately expand demand and promote innovation next year to achieve stable and healthy economic growth, according to a top Party meeting on Friday.

"Seeking progress while maintaining stability will be the principle of economic work for China next year," according to a statement released after the meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China's Central Committee. The meeting was presided over by President Xi Jinping.

It said efforts should be made to promote stable growth, reform and people's well-being and to prevent risks.

Priority will be placed on five major tasks: cutting excessive capacity, destocking, deleveraging, reducing corporate costs and shoring up the economy's weak links, the meeting agreed. Additionally, the real economy sectors will be boosted.

The country will push ahead with the Belt and Road Initiative aimed at boosting trade and connectivity across Asia, Europe and Africa.

It will also expand its opening-up and act to attract foreign investment, according to the meeting, which was held ahead of the annual Central Economic Work Conference later this month. At the conference, top leaders will map out the country's economic and reform agenda for 2017.

China's economic priority next year should be stability, according to a Citibank report.

It added that China still has ample policy tools to shore up next year's growth, which is expected to reach 6.5 percent.

A series of recent economic indicators have pointed to stabilizing growth, with prices beginning to pick up moderately in November, indicating rising economic activity.

China's consumer price index, a gauge of inflation, rose by 2.3 percent year-on-year in November, the fastest in six months.

The producer price index, which measures factory-gate prices, continued to pick up to reach 3.3 percent, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Friday.

The CPI hit 1.3 percent in August, the lowest this year, and the PPI was -5.9 percent at the start of this year, triggering concerns that the country could be sliding into a deflationary cycle.

But the rising consumer and producer price indexes in November, together with other indicators, show the economy could have started to stabilize, analysts said.

Raymond Yeung, chief economist for greater China at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd in Hong Kong, told Bloomberg that "China has entered a new inflationary cycle".

However, China's real estate prices remain at high levels, and it faces the threat of asset bubbles, which means China's monetary stance may remain moderately tight, said Jiang Chao, an analyst at Haitong Securities.
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China to move closer to centenary goals

China Daily | Updated: 2017-01-04 07:29

This year is significant in China's political calendar as the 19th Communist Party of China National Congress will convene in Beijing in the second half of this year. The whole world will be paying close attention as the 2,300 delegates, chosen by over 88 million Party members, assemble to elect a new Central Committee.

It is expected that by then there will have been further elaboration on how the Party will strictly govern itself and how it will navigate the complex external and internal environments to lead the country toward the realization of the two centenary goals: the doubling of China's GDP and per-capita income 2010 levels by 2020, and the building of a modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious by the middle of this century.

To achieve these two goals the economy needs to be rebalanced, and problems regarding reform, development and stability have to be overcome to achieve innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development.

China's decades-long reform drive is now in the deep-water zone as the easier reforms have been accomplished and the remaining reforms are hard nuts to crack. However, the leadership of the CPC Central Committee, with Xi Jinping as the core, has demonstrated it has the will and resolve to push forward the necessary reforms.

Extensive supply-side structural reform, including reducing pollution and phasing out excess capacity, is being advanced, and State Council agencies have already canceled or delegated administrative approval for 618 items, in a bid to invigorate the economy by cutting red tape and streamlining governance.

Breakthroughs have also been made in judicial reform, fiscal and tax reform, reform of State-owned enterprises, and reform of the military, where a tiered command system including the Central Military Commission and five theater commands have been established.

The results are encouraging. Today, China is one of the world's fastest growing major economies and a top trading body. It boasts a strong military of over 2 million people and is the biggest contributor to international peacekeeping personnel among the permanent members of the UN Security Council.

Its rural population living in poverty decreased from 770 million to 55.75 million between 1978 and 2015, and another 10 million were lifted out of poverty last year. The leadership aims to lift all people out of poverty in the country by 2020.

At the same time, the Party's battle against corruption has maintained its momentum, demonstrating as Xi has said that: "All people are equal before the law and regulations, and the enforcement of such rules allow no privilege or exception."

China is also moving closer to the center of the world stage. Xi's vision and efforts toward a fairer global governance system and a new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation, as well as his busy globetrotting-51 countries in 24 trips in about four years-have helped create an open, inclusive and responsible image for China on the international stage.

The Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road proposed by Xi in 2013 are being participated in by more than 100 countries and international organizations. While China's initiative to provide funding for the needed infrastructure in the region, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, has been launched with 57 members.

Xi has also set a new global agenda for peace, progress, prosperity with his proposal that all countries work together to build a community of shared destiny for all humankind.

This year will see China further build on these achievements and take further steps toward the two centenary goals.

Xinhua News Agency
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CPC Central Committee calls to institutionalize education campaign

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-03-29 07:36

BEIJING - The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee has said the ongoing education campaign on Party management should be institutionalized.

According to a circular issued by the general office of the CPC Central Committee made public on Tuesday, the campaign was launched in 2016 and focuses on the study of the Party Constitution and code of conduct, as well as the speeches made by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee.

A series of remarks made by Xi are the latest achievements in the theoretical system of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and they mark the latest development of contemporary Marxism in China, it said.

The remarks are considered important thought for Party building and advancing the great cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics, it said, adding that they will also serve as guiding principles for all Party organizations and members.

Party organizations at various levels should fully realize the importance of institutionalizing the campaign and put ideological education high on their agendas, it said.

Efforts should be made to standardize actions of Party organizations and members in accordance with the Party Constitution and code of conduct.Efforts should also be made to ensure Party organizations fully play their roles and leading officials are clean, honest and bold in assuming responsibilities.

Party organizations should evaluate results of the campaign annually, it said.

The circular asked Party committees at all levels to lead grassroots Party organizations and members to unite more closely around the CPC Central Committee with Xi as the core.

Party committees at all levels should make annual study schedules while leading officials should have their own individual study plans, it noted.

Party organizations should guide members to strengthen their ideals and beliefs, implement the Party's decisions and observe Party discipline and rules, according to the statement.

Those who fail to act accordingly will be criticized seriously or held accountable, the document added.
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CPC creates four-tier system to measure political discipline

BEIJING -- China's Communist Party of China (CPC) is creating ways to gauge the political soundness of its more than 88 million members, a move experts believe could help the ruling party to maintain a clean political system.

The CPC's disciplinary branch released, for the first time earlier this month, nationwide breakdown figures of the "four forms" of discipline supervision and enforcement, first put forward by the branch in 2015 before making their way into regulations on intra-Party supervision in late October.

The four forms refer to four levels of punishment and supervision: criticism and self-criticism as well as inquiries through interview or letters should be the most common; minor disciplinary penalties should make up the majority; severely punished or demoted officials should be a small proportion; and those prosecuted for law-breaking should be extremely few.

In the first quarter of this year, disciplinary organs nationwide dealt with 179,000 people via the four forms, with 92,000, or 51.7 percent, falling in the first form after being tipped off about breaches of discipline, said the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI).

People subject to the other three forms accounted for 36.3 percent, 6.4 percent and 5.6 percent of the total respectively.

Such data was only made possible after the CCDI put a statistical indicator system into trial use, comprising of 56 indices, at the end of last year.

Xin Ming, a professor with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, said the regular release of the data and other statistics of rules violators could provide an accurate picture for the Party to identify risks, spot loopholes and facilitate solutions in Party governance.

Aiming for "green hills and clean water" in political discipline, the CPC has used analogy of managing trees in a forest, saying that the Party must "pluck rotten trees, cure sick trees and straighten crooked trees."

"Before the four forms concept was put forward, inspectors only fixed their eyes on a few sick or rotten trees instead of the entire forest," said Jiang Jinquan, a senior CCDI inspector. "Now they are turning their attention to trees in the entire forest."

Jiang described the transition from targeting "big tigers" to a comprehensive supervisory and discipline enforcement approach as "an important theoretical innovation."

As the battle against corruption has gained crushing momentum, the CPC said it would continue to reduce existing corruption and contain any rise in corruption in 2017, vowing to clear out sources of corruption and establish an effective prevention system.

"The first of the four forms is an important embodiment of the CPC's strict governance of the Party," said Xie Chuntao, a professor from the Party School of the CPC Central Committee.

"It is expected to dispel the dated distinction between 'good comrades' and 'prisoners' by having a preventative effect, spotting and giving warning to CPC members engaging in petty misconduct at an early stage," he said.
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Looking to China as a template for industrializing

By Edith Mutethya | China Daily Africa | Updated: 2017-08-04 10:13

As Africa gears up for industrialization, analysts say the continent should take a leaf from China's book, taking advantage of their growing cooperation.

Within a period of 30 years, China became the world's largest producer of manufactured goods, an achievement that took the United Kingdom 150 years to achieve.

Currently, China is Africa's biggest trade partner, and so the continent has a precious opportunity to replicate the Asian country's success story.

Bob Wekesa, steering committee member of the Chinese in Africa, Africans in China Research Network, says it would be possible to replicate China's model in developing Africa's manufacturing sector.

Wekesa notes that China started off with the establishment of special economic zones, which eventually drove innovation throughout the country.

"This is a model that calls for the intervention of governments in matters of development. We call it the developmental state model. It is a model that African countries should emulate," he says.

Similar sentiments are shared by Sikhumbuzo Zondi, research assistant at the Institute for Global Dialogue, associated with the University of South Africa. Zondi says the establishment of special manufacturing hubs in the early 1970s, as part of China's policy to open up to international trade, played a key role in the country's industrialization process.

"Such reforms became the turning point toward its market-oriented economy, as thorough research was done, including the establishment of special economic zones which became the driving force for growth," he says.

Zondi says African countries should work toward setting up and implementing sound policies. This is in addition to improving regulatory frameworks and tax policies in order to attract and encourage investment.

This is because many African states produce similar raw materials, resulting in strong competition between them. To minimize such competition, Zondi says they should develop strategies based on competitive advantage that can maximize potential.

Manaseh Otieno, policy analyst at the Kenya Institute for Public Research and Analysis, says the Chinese industrialization model can be replicated in Africa but within each country's specific context.

"The political environment might play a significant role in their development, but the same might not be replicable in other countries. There are, however, a lot of lessons developing countries can learn from China," he says.

Otieno says developing countries need to learn how efficient and effective use of resources can enhance manufacturing productivity and economic growth.

This, alongside investment in both hard and soft infrastructure, is important for enhancing value chains and value addition for exports.

Looking to China as a template for industrializing

"Developing countries need to enhance their value addition potential," he says.

A report by the World Bank, titled China's investment in African Special Economic Zones: Prospects, Challenges and Opportunities, states that China's recent moves to establish SEZs in several African countries could make a significant contribution to industrialization in Africa.

However, the success of zones is by no means guaranteed. Meeting the objectives of both China and African countries will require an active partnership and a framework for collaboration that includes engagement from host governments.

This is in addition to processes for phasing in local control, communication and enforcement of standards, and support for integration with local economies.

In 2006, the Chinese government announced that it would support the establishment of as many as 50 overseas "economic and trade cooperation zones". Of the 19 approved so far, five are in sub-Saharan Africa: in Ethiopia, Mauritius, Nigeria (two) and Zambia.

The Chinese SEZ projects in Africa might be practical, considering that China is the world's foremost success story in using SEZs as a tool for attracting foreign direct investment and promoting export-oriented industrialization.

However, Jack Ma, the Alibaba Group founder and executive chairman, says replicating China's model may not work for Africa.

"For Africa to develop, Africans should not follow any other country's model," he says. "The continent should come up with its own model, focusing on the use of the modern technology and protecting the environment."

If Africa copies China in building its manufacturing hub, Ma says, it has no future because world manufacturing is shifting from business-to-consumer to consumer-to-business.

"The future of a manufacturing line is not how many T-shirts can be made in one assembly for one hour but how many different, tailor-made T-shirts can be made," he says.
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China to still help Africa to boost ability to fight virus
China will continue to offer help to African countries to improve their ability in combating the novel coronavirus outbreak, said an official with the National Health Commission.

Li Mingzhu, an official at the commission's department of international cooperation and exchanges, said China has been sending medical teams to African countries for 57 years and there are around 1,000 Chinese medical workers in African countries.

They have conducted more than 250 training sessions for more than 10,000 African people, Li said at a news conference on Thursday.

For example, the medical teams conducted training at local hospitals to improve local medical workers' knowledge on diagnosis and treatment of the epidemic, and the Chinese medical team in Ethiopia has helped the country to adjust testing equipment and Ethiopia has become the second African country capable of conducting nucleic acid testing for COVID-19, he said.

Medical experts in China have also held video conferences with local experts in 54 African countries to offer them technological support, he said.

African countries have expressed their appreciation for the help from China and said China's experiences in combating the outbreak are very valuable to them, he added.

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China's medical supplies for 18 African countries arrive in Accra, Ghana
Staff unload Chinese medical supplies from an airplane at the Kotota International Airport in Accra, capital of Ghana, April 6, 2020. China's medical supplies for 18 African countries have arrived here on Monday, and are scheduled to be delivered to the other 17 countries within a few days. The beneficiary African countries are Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Gabon, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Cote d'Ivoire, Gambia, Liberia, Mali, Burkina Faso, Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Togo, Benin, Cape Verde, as well as Sao Tome and Principe. (Xinhua/Xu Zheng)
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Xi hails role of community workers
President encourages grassroots staff to continue anti-virus efforts in reply letter

President Xi Jinping has called on community workers to continue their steadfast efforts to combat COVID-19 as communities remain an important line of defense against imported cases and a rebound of the outbreak in China.

Xi made the remark in a letter of reply on Wednesday to community workers at a neighborhood which he visited last month during his inspection tour of Wuhan, the Chinese city hit hardest by the outbreak.

During his visit he spoke with community workers, police officers, doctors, officials and volunteers at Donghu Xincheng residential community in Wuhan, capital of Hubei province.

In his letter to the community workers, Xi said he was glad to know that life in Wuhan was gradually returning to normal.

Wuhan has lifted its 76-day lockdown, but Xi cautioned against any slackening of epidemic prevention work. He noted that routine adoption of epidemic control measures should play a key role in these new circumstances.

The city's urban and rural community workers have, together with other front-line workers, fought the virus regardless of the risks they faced, he said.

Xi, who is also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, said that Party members and officials in communities took the lead in this battle.

The widespread prevention and control measures adopted by the public fully reflected China's capability to win the people's war against the pandemic, Xi added.

He urged the community workers to continue their efforts in containing the outbreak and serving the people wholeheartedly.

Tao Jiudi is one of the community workers at Donghu Xincheng residential community who wrote to Xi. In the letter they invited him to return to Wuhan when it was possible to do so.

"We hope General Secretary Xi can take a walk on our street, and taste Wuhan hot dry noodles and grain liquor after the pandemic," she said.

Tao said she believed that all community workers across the country will feel the same encouragement and excitement that she did when reading Xi's letter of reply.

Acting as the commander-in-chief in the "people's war" on the pandemic, Xi has said on various occasions that communities hold the key to curbing the spread of the virus and praised community workers for their important role in the battle.

Since the start of the outbreak, about 4 million community workers have been working at the front line in 650,000 urban and rural communities nationwide, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

They are responsible for monitoring the outbreak, controlling access to their communities, education campaigns to increase public awareness of the virus and helping disadvantaged residents.

Mao Zongfu, director of Wuhan University's Global Health Institute, told China Youth Daily that community-based pandemic control was an important factor in combating COVID-19 in Wuhan as the community level is a weak point in preventing diseases and treating patients.

A comprehensive mechanism should be established to prevent major disease outbreaks in cities and communities, Mao said.

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