By David Gitter, Julia Bowie, Nathanael Callan, Brock Erdahl, Ann Listerud, and Sandy Lu
Xi Jinping attended a meeting of the Central Commission for Comprehensively Deepening Reform along with Wang Huning and Han Zheng (see Senior Leaders section).Li Keqiang attended the China-ASEAN Summit, the ASEAN Plus Three Summit, and the 13th East Asia Summit in Singapore (see Senior Leaders section).The State Council Information Office released a white paper on “Cultural Protection and Development in Xinjiang” (see Propaganda Work section).The CCDI announced the repatriation of Zheng Quanguan from the United States for suspected embezzlement and the investigation of Jiangsu Province Vice Governor Miao Ruilin (see Party Discipline section).
Xi Jinping Meets with Hong Kong And Macau People from All Walks of Life to Celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Reform and Opening Up
11.12 Xi Jinping met with delegations from Hong Kong and Macau to celebrate the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up and to discuss the role of Hong Kong and Macau “irreplaceable role” in the process. The meeting was attended by Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam.
Xi told delegates that just as socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, “one country, two systems” has entered a new era as well. He urged delegates to “fully understand and accurately grasp the positioning of Hong Kong and Macau in reform and opening up in the new era” and to “cultivate new advantages, play a new role, achieve new development, and make new contributions.”
Xi Jinping raised four “hopes” for Hong Kong and Macau compatriots:That Hong Kong and Macau will more actively help the country open up. In doing so, he said the status of Hong Kong and Macau will strengthen, not weaken.That Hong Kong and Macau will take the initiative to integrate itself into the country’s overall national development situation.That Hong Kong and Macau will be more proactive in participating in national governance practices, such as improving mechanisms for the implementation of the Constitution and Basic Law.That Hong Kong and Macau will be more proactive in promoting international cultural exchanges, taking advantage of Hong Kong and Macau’s extensive international relationships to spread Chinese culture and “tell a good contemporary China story.”Xi Jinping Delivers Important Speech at Fifth Meeting of the Central Commission for Comprehensively Deepening Reform
11.14 Xi Jinping presided over and delivered an important speech at the fifth meeting of the Central Commission for Comprehensively Deepening Reform. Politburo Standing Committee members Wang Huning (王沪宁) and Han Zheng (韩正) also participated in the meeting.
The commission reviewed 15 documents. These included five documents on Hainan and others on market entity exit system reform, government procurement system reform, vocational training reform, county-level media convergence center construction, world-class science and technology journal cultivation, grassroots-level approval services and law enforcement integration, publication work improvement, centralized medicine procurement trials, administrative law enforcement implementation, and Beijing’s Party-led grassroots governance system probes.
The commission stated that “40 years of practice prove that the more complex the environment is the more we must maintain our strategic focus.” In response, it called for “building a good social atmosphere for reform and opening,” “strengthening positive propaganda and public opinion guidance,” and “fortifying the whole of society’s confidence in reform.”
Li Keqiang Attends Several Multilateral Summits in Singapore
11.14-11.15 Xinhua reported on Li Keqiang’s travels to Singapore to attend several multilateral summits.
On 14 November, Li attended the 21st China-ASEAN Summit. He called for “working hand-in-hand to create a higher-level strategic partnership and even closer community of shared future between China and ASEAN.” To do so, he advocated “strengthening strategic planning, deepening economic and trade cooperation, cultivating bright spots in innovation, building up the pillar of cultural activities, and expanding security cooperation.”
On 15 November, he attended the 21st ASEAN Plus Three Summit. He emphasized that “ASEAN Plus Three countries should continue to resolutely safeguard multilateralism and free trade” and praised recent negotiations over the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership for “achieving a modern, comprehensive, high-level, and mutually beneficial free trade agreement.” In addition, he proposed further recommendations, namely “pushing forward East Asian economic integration, fortifying financial security, breaking new ground in innovation cooperation, promoting inclusive development, and tightening cultural bonds.”
On the same day, Li also attended the 13th East Asia Summit. He offered five recommendations for “further advancing East Asian cooperation.” These included “adhering to multilateralism, safeguarding free trade, accelerating the progress of regional economic integration, promoting regional cooperation in sustainable development, and launch political and security dialogues.” Li also described the situation in the South China Sea as “approaching stability” and stated that China “hopes countries from outside the region respect and support the hard work regional countries have put into this.”
While in Singapore, Li Keqiang also individually met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and State Counsellor of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi.
PD Commentator: Develop a National Team for Emergency Response and Rescue
11.10 A People’s Daily commentator article was published on the flag-conferring ceremony of the National Firefighting Rescue Team held on 9 November at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The article noted that Xi Jinping instructed the force “on behalf of the Party Central Committee express warm congratulations to all firefighter and rescue personnel” and emphasized that the establishment of the force “is the Central Committee's strategic decision made to adapt to modernization of the country’s governance system and governance capacity,” that the force is “an important measure to the construction of a national emergency response system for a new era.”
“From the beginning to the end” the commentary stated, the team must be “loyal to the Party and uphold the Party’s absolute leadership,” and should “further increase their sense of political responsibility and historic mission.”
PD Commentator: Let the “Fengqiao Experience” Be Carried Forward in a New Era
11.13 People’s Daily published a commentator article stressing the ongoing importance of the “Fengqiao experience” (枫桥经验), a reference to Mao Zedong’s 1963 instructions to learn from the implementation of the Socialist Education Movement in Fengqiao, Zhejiang, to China in a new era. The article argued that the experience “is an entire set of effective social governance plans created by the Party leading the people.”
The article emphasized that “adhering to and developing the ‘Fengqiao experience’ in a new era must always put into practice the Party’s mass line” and “must innovate methods for mass work.” It maintained that the former is necessary since “the mass line is the lifeline and fundamental work line of our Party. Regardless of how the times change, the mass line, this Party heirloom, cannot be lost” while the latter is needed since the experience’s “vitality lies in innovation. All regions and relevant departments continuously give it new implications according to changing circumstances.”
Zhong Sheng: The Bright and Beautiful “Answer Sheet” (答卷) for China’s Human Rights Record
11.13 The commentary pen name Zhong Sheng (钟声), which stands for “Voice of China” and transmits the official positions of the People's Daily on matters of international affairs, praised that China’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) report to the UN Human Rights Council is “a bright and beautiful test paper that China hands to the world to manifest the enormous progress China has made in its human rights undertaking.” China’s UPR report was adopted by the UN Human Rights Council on 9 November.
During the review process, the article said China “conducted constructive dialogue,” “demonstrated its confidence and willingness to take on responsibilities as a responsible power,” and “received positive feedback” from the attendees. Regarding a few Western countries’ “baseless accusations on China,” Zhong Sheng said China “solemnly refuted them with a great amount of facts and evidence.”
Zhong Sheng stressed that “China’s implementations have shown the world that there is more than one way to safeguard human rights” and that “the Chinese side firmly opposed and would never accept some countries … interfering in China’s domestic politics and judicial sovereignty.”
Xi Jinping Publishes Signed Article in Papua New Guinea Newspapers
11.14 Ahead of his visit to Papua New Guinea for the APEC meeting, Xi Jinping published a signed article in Papua New Guinea Newspapers, the Post Courier and The National.
In the article, Xi noted the close economic relationship between the two countries: Papua New Guinea is China’s largest trading partner among Pacific Island countries, and China is Papua New Guinea’s largest source of foreign investment. He also noted his long-standing personal commitment to cooperation with Papua New Guinea: he promoted an assistance program for dry rice cultivation in Papua New Guinea’s East Highlands during his tenure as governor of Fujian.
Xi outlined his plan for enhancing the bilateral relationship. First, he said that strategic mutual trust must reach a new level. He wrote that China is willing to work with Pacific Island nations to establish a “new type of international relations” and to build a “community of shared future for mankind.” Second, he said common development must be given new momentum, stating that joint development of the Belt and Road will forge a new path for Pacific Island countries. Third, he stated that “the people’s friendship must write a new chapter” through enhancing cultural and educational exchange and cooperation.
State Council Information Office Releases White Paper on “Cultural Protection and Development in Xinjiang”
11.15 The State Council Information Office released a white paper on “Cultural Protection and Development in Xinjiang.” The white paper includes a preface discussing how “all the cultures of ethnic groups of Xinjiang are component parts of Chinese culture,” and that “religious cultures receive respect and protection, cultural heritage protection and inheritance have achieved accomplishments, cultural undertaking and industries have unceasingly developed.”
In a later section of the white paper, it is stated that “historical experience shows that learning and using the commonly used standard Chinese as a spoken and written language has helped develop Xinjiang's ethnic cultures. The Chinese government works hard to promote the use of the standard Chinese language, protects by law ethnic people's freedom to use and develop their own languages.”
The white paper also pointed out that “since the People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949, the Chinese government has attached great importance to documenting and protecting the excellent traditional ethnic cultures in Xinjiang... (and) respected their freedom of religious belief.” The white paper concluded by stating “under the strong leadership of the CCP Central Committee with Xi Jinping as the core… people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang should and can shoulder their new cultural mission to create a new boom in cultural creations and make new developments along with cultural progress.”
The full text of the white paper is available in English and Chinese.
Interpol Red Notice Fugitive Zheng Quanguan Repatriated from the US
11.14 Under the coordination of the Fugitive Repatriation and Asset Recovery Office of the Central Anti-Corruption Coordination Group (中央反腐败协调小组国际追逃追赃工作办公室), Chinese and US law enforcement departments worked together to repatriate Zheng Quanguan (郑泉官), a suspect in embezzlement-related crimes, back to China. Zheng is the former general manager of a real estate company in Hunan named Fuda (富达). He is suspected of embezzling more than 28 million RMB and was put on the Interpol Red Notice list upon China’s request.
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) and National Supervisory Commission (NSC) website published a commentary saying that Zheng’s return is “another successful implementation of China-US cooperation on pursuing fugitives.” The article stated that “cooperation on anti-corruption and law enforcement…. has become a highlight of the new type of major power relationship between China and the US.”
Jiangsu Province Vice Governor Under CCDI and NSC Investigation
11.15 CCDI and NSC released a short announcement on their website saying that Jiangsu Province Vice Governor Miao Ruilin (缪瑞林) is currently put under CCDI’s and NSC’s disciplinary and supervisory investigations for serious violations of discipline and laws. Miao had served as Jiangsu Vice Governor and a member of Jiangsu Party Leadership Group since January this year.
Central Military Commission
Xi Jinping at CMC Policy and Institution Reform Work Meeting: Establish a Robust Socialism with Chinese Characteristics Military Policy and Institution System
11.13-14 A Central Military Commission (CMC) work meeting on policy and institution reform was held from 13 to 14 November in Beijing. Xi Jinping, in his capacity as head of the CMC leading group for deepening reform of national defense and the armed forces (中央军委深化国防和军队改革领导小组), attended the meeting and gave an important speech.
He emphasized during his speech that “national defense and armed forces construction has entered a new era along with socialism with Chinese characteristics” and that “systematic and deep reforms on military policy and institution… are urgently needed.” Xi pointed out that a “robust socialism with Chinese characteristics military policy and institution system” should be built with “ensuring the Party’s absolute leadership over the military as its guide” and “treating combat ability as its sole and fundamental standard.” Xi stressed the importance of policy and institution reforms on “military training, equipment development, logistic building, military science and technology research, national defense mobilization, and civil-military integration.”
CMC Vice Chairman and executive deputy head of the leading group Xu Qiliang (许其亮), CMC Vice Chairman and leading group deputy head Zhang Youxia (张又侠), and CMC members Wei Fenghe (魏凤和), Li Zuocheng (李作成), Miao Hua (苗华), and Zhang Shengmin (张升民) attended the meeting.
Editorial: Reshape the Strategic Deployment of Military Policy and Institutional System
11.15 PLA Daily published an editorial on the CMC’s policy and institutional reform work meeting. It stressed that “military policy and institution regulate military’s relationship and implementation and safeguard its development.”
It especially pointed out that “even though our country’s current military policy and institutions have undergone constant adjustment, deep-level contradictions and problems (persist)” saying “ideas are not advanced, direction is not clear, the system is not perfect, and the disconnection between military and civil society are not fundamentally resolved.” The editorial urged the military to “treat implementing the decisions and plans of the Central Committee, the CMC, and Chairman Xi as a critical political responsibility” and “ensure that the reform is moving forward according to plan.”
Comprehensively Deepening Reform
Commentary: “Singles Day” Data Shines Light on Higher Levels of Consumption
China Economic Daily
11.13 According to a China Economic Daily commentary, 10 years since it’s inception, “Singles Day” (11 November) has become an important opportunity to highlight the civilian-economy’s market vitality. Between the thousands of merchants and countless consumers who engaged in “Singles Day” e-commerce sales, online shopping this year reached a new all-time high.
The policy environment of inclusive freedom and decentralized business has helped China’s e-commerce to flourish and enjoy exponential growth. E-commerce has changed people’s consumption expectations and habits, and has become an important driver for increasing consumption-led growth. Large scale sales campaigns like “Singles Day” show that consumers are no longer focused on low prices, and are drawn to brands, high quality, and services.
Consumption levels are rising from large cities to villages. With the popularity of the Internet, e-commerce has become increasingly accessible to people in small cities and villages, opening up new consumer markets and having a remarkable effect on poverty alleviation. We can only look forward to how e-commerce will develop in the next 10 years.
International Liaison Work
11.10 International Department Vice Minister Qian Hongshan (钱洪山) met with Communist Party of the Russian Federation Presidium member and Irkutsk Oblast Governor Sergei Levchenko.
11.12 International Department Minister Song Tao (宋涛) met with the German Minister of Foreign Affairs Heiko Maas.
11.12 International Department Vice Minister Wang Yajun (王亚军) met with the Lao Ambassador to China Vandy Bouthasavong.
11.13 International Department Vice Minister Guo Yezhou (郭业洲) met with a South African African National Congress (ANC) study group led by ANC National Executive Committee and National Working Committee member Ronald Lamola.
Song Tao and Guo Yezhou also jointly met with the study group on the same day.
11.15 International Department Vice Minister Li Jun (李军) met with a Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) senior cadre study group led by CPP Central Committee member, CPP Central Committee Commission for External Relations Vice Chairman, and National Assembly member Suos Yara.
11.15 Guo Yezhou met with International Conference of Asian Political Parties Standing Committee Vice Chairman and Pakistani Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Mushahid Hussain Syed.
11.13 Chen Dechun (陈德春) was appointed deputy general manager of Sinochem.
11.14 Gao Hongjun (高鸿钧) was appointed deputy secretary of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
11.14 Chen Zongrong (陈宗荣) was appointed secretary-general of the United Front Work Department.
11.16 Shu Yinbiao (舒印彪) was appointed chairman of China Huaneng Group and secretary of its Party leadership group.
11.16 Zhang Jianchun (张建春) was appointed deputy head of the Central Organization Department.