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Strategic Studies of International Promotion of the Chinese Language

[Editor’s Note: The Institute for the Promotion of Chinese Language and Culture (IPCLC, was established in November 2006 under Renmin University of China. It is one of many research centers set up by Hanban, or the Office of the Chinese Language Council International, an inter-governmental agency leading the regime’s international promotion of the Chinese language. The director of IPCLC, Ji Baocheng, is also the President of Renmin University of China. In August 2008, IPCLC issued a “Strategic Research Report on the International Promotion of the Chinese Language,” detailing the strategic considerations behind the promotion of the Chinese language and plans to carry out its goals.[1] Following are excerpts from the release on IPCLC’s website.]

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Loving One’s Country Does Not Mean the Same as Loving the Imperial Court

[Editor’s Note: On April 11, 2010, Nanfang Metropolitan, published an article by History Scholar Hong Zhenquai, “Loving One’s Country Does Not Mean the Same as Loving the Imperial Court.” The article suggested that nowadays many people misunderstand the relationship between the people, the country, and the imperial court (in the setting of current China, the imperial court can be understood as a metaphor for the Communist regime). A major reason was that the sitting government misleads people into believing that “loving the court represents loving the country.” Mencius, a philosopher from the fourth century B.C., who defended the teachings of Confucius against other philosophies, publicly discussed the correct relationship: “People are the most important, followed by the country, with the emperor coming last.” The article makes a case for people having oversight and control over the government. [1]

The article received a lot of compliments for its boldness, given the CCP’s media control. An unconfirmed blog message on Aiyuan said that Nanfang Metropolitan Editor Zhu Di was chastised (and lost her job) for publishing the article. The article is no longer available on the website of Nanfang Daily (Nanfang Metropolitan’s parent company), but can be found on many overseas Chinese sites. [2]

Nanfang Metropolitan is a newspaper under the Nanfang Newspaper Media Group, one of the most liberal state-owned newspapers, headquartered in Guangzhou City, Guangdong Province. When President Obama visited China in 2009, he gave an exclusive interview to Nanfang Metropolitan’s sister company Nanfang Weekend.

The article follows.]

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The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) New Tibetan Strategy

[Editor’s Note>: In early January, the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee held a conference on implementing a new round of work on administration in the Tibetan region. On January 25, 2010, the CCP’s official website published a speech given by Ye Xiaowen, the former head of the CPC Religious Bureau, the Executive Vice President of the Central Socialism Institute, and Vice President of the China Tibetan Culture Protection Committee. [1] The speech was on the “student forum” of the CCP’s Party School’s 46th seminar of the provincial officials in September 2009. The Tibet administration strategy he promoted was to use the CCP’s propaganda to reduce the Tibetan Buddhist canon and doctrine, to use the pursuit of material wealth to reduce the Tibetan’s pursuit of spirit, to limit the development of Tibetan Buddhism, and to use the CCP’s controlled propaganda machine to compete with western media on the “speaking power” on the Tibetan issue. It is indeed interesting to observe the atheist communist regime’s understanding of Tibetan spiritual values. The following is an abstract of his speech.]

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A Road Map for the Development of Inner-Party Democracy

A Road Map for the Development of Inner-Party Democracy" [1]

"The Fourth Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee raised the issue that the party is facing profoundly severe challenges. … It revealed the deep background and an inevitable trend of developing inner-party democracy under the new situation. One of the important tests the Party is facing is to achieve legitimacy in the transformation of governance, that is, the transformation from revolution legitimacy to governance legitimacy, and to achieve democratic governance under highly developed inner-party democracy. The Plenary Session … placed the development of inner-party democracy in a very prominent position, proposed strategic thinking and detailed requirements for inner-party democracy’s development, and laid a road map for further developing democracy within the party. This road map includes four elements: adhering to one principle, laying one foundation, following one path, and perfecting one system. Adhering to one principle means to adhere to the unity of inner-party democracy and centralization, or the principle of democratic centralism; [3] laying one foundation is to strengthen the building of grassroots democracy within the party and consolidate the cornerstone of democracy within the party; following one path is to follow the path of inner-party democracy leading people’s democracy, to achieve an effective connection and interaction between inner-party democracy and people’s democracy. Perfecting one system means to reform and perfect a series of specific systems of inner-party democracy and improve the institutionalization of democracy within the party. "

"Either from a theoretical or from a practical perspective, there are three forms of relationship between democracy and centralization: strong democracy, weak centralization; weak democracy, strong centralization; and the unity of democracy and centralization. A revolutionary party generally adopts the second form, namely, weak democracy and strong centralization. This is due to the need to ensure the victory of the revolution. It was also related to the limitations associated with the situation back then. When a revolutionary party turns into a governing party, especially governing in a market economy and in opening up conditions, it requires transformation from the second to the third form, that is, from weak democracy strong centralization to the unity of democracy and centralization. Democratic centralism is the third form, which is the combination of centralization based on democracy and democracy under centralized guidance. Developing inner-party democracy does not mean to abandon the centralization within the party, but to change the situation where there is not enough democracy but too much centralization." "Given the conditions of our country and the party, it is feasible and relatively beneficial to choose transformation from weak democracy, strong centralization to the unity of democracy and centralization, that is, maintaining centralization while developing inner-party democracy, or democratic centralism. Centralization within the party embodies a number of specific principles and systems, such as the party’s leadership, the party’s managing its cadres, and so on. Developing inner-party democracy is inseparable from the party’s leadership and promotion. Inner-party democracy can only be developed orderly and healthily under the leadership of the party. … Without the party’s leadership and promotion, inner-party democracy will be difficult to develop, may lead to a wrong path, or may even cause the party to split."

"The development of inner-party democracy is critical to political system reform and the stability of the nation’s reform and development policies. … A safer way is to effectively build grass-roots democracy from the grassroots level. A grassroots unit involves a small number of party members and is relatively simple to operate with relatively low risk. Thus it is a good testing ground to try inner-Party democracy. It will help us to learn democracy while practicing democracy, and practice democracy while learning democracy." "Whether we can develop a good grass-roots democracy within the party is directly related to the immediate interests of party members. Party members and the masses care the most about the development of grassroots democracy within the party. The development of grassroots democracy within the party will facilitate party members to be directly involved in the management and decision-making processes of party affairs at the grassroots level, and fully reflect the democratic rights of party members."

"The people’s democratic system is formed and developed under the party’s leadership. If we want to continue the development of the people’s democracy, we must have a breakthrough in inner-party democracy; otherwise the room for people’s democracy will be limited. From a procedural point of view, inner-party democracy in some respects is the front link for people’s democracy. For example, the candidates for government leaders must be nominated by the ruling party. Hence, at this point, the ruling party’s inner-party democracy has a decisive impact on the people’s democracy. More importantly, it is a strategic choice to have inner-party democracy lead the people’s democracy. In the democratic development process, if the people’s democracy is too far ahead, independent forces outside the ruling party could constitute a challenge to the ruling party’s governing position. This is what the ruling party does not want to see during its development of democracy." "The development of inner-party democracy could serve as a model for the people’s democracy, mainly in the following areas: how to protect democratic rights; how to build a competition mechanism; how to improve democratic procedures; and how to constrain and balance power. If we can implement the constraints and balances of power within the ruling party which is the core of state power, it will not be difficult at all to develop the people’s democracy."

"The Fourth Plenary Session of the 17th CPC central committee pointed out that (we should) uphold and perfect the party’s leadership system, perfect the party’s congress system and the party’s electoral system, and improve the mechanism of democratic decision-making within the party. The system plays a fundamental role. For inner-party democracy to really work, we must rely on a series of effective concrete systems: 1. Perfect the party’s congress and the committee system. In recent years we have … implemented the party congress tenure system, and emphasized the committee’s role in major personnel decisions, but there is still much room for improvement. We need innovation in the process of determining representatives and committee members, and also improving the quantity and quality of meetings. 2. Perfect the competitive election system within the party. Currently there is room for the party’s election system to improve, mainly in two areas. One is in candidate nominations, which has a significant impact on the election results. If the power of nomination rests in the hands of a few people, it is not beneficial for broadening the view for the election, and can easily lead to corruption. The second is whether to have the same number of candidates as there are positions, or to have more candidates, and if more, how much more. The meaning of an election is to choose from a number of candidates. If we offer the same number of candidates or a slightly larger number of candidates, compared to the positions to be elected, the election is not meaningful any more. 3. Improve the democratic decision-making mechanism within the party. Improving the decision-making mechanism is an extremely urgent requirement and task for developing democracy within the party. The main disadvantage of the current decision-making mechanism is that the power is too concentrated in a few hands, especially in the ‘number one’ hands. Sometimes it is only a "one-man decision." This has become a major cause for decision-making errors and corruption."

Promote Democracy within the Party in Our Study and Practice [2]

"On June 29, 2009, at the 14th group study meeting of the Central Politburo, Comrade Hu Jintao clearly pointed out that promoting inner-party democracy is a strategic task in the great new project to comprehensively promote the party’s development. … The Fourth Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee once again called on all party members and leading cadres to work hard at mastering and applying all new scientific ideas, new knowledge, and new experiences, and to treat the strategic task of building a learning-oriented Marxism Party as an urgent priority. Therefore, promoting democracy within the party in our study and practice and leading people to create a new situation in the great cause of building socialism with Chinese characteristics have become the strategic tasks for our party’s development. As the governing party we must study democracy more comprehensively and more systematically, and practice democracy in a broader and deeper way."

"To promote inner-party democracy, we must seriously and systematically study the Marxist  theory of democracy. Marxism is the thinking and action guideline for the proletarian party. Marxism is not only revolutionary theory but also development theory." "To promote inner-party democracy, we must have a broad and open vision and objectively learn the outstanding civilization results from other countries in their development of democracy. The historical development of democracy is diverse. The democratic practice models in different countries are vastly different, too. Different countries and different nationalities choose their own model for democratic development based on their own historical and cultural traditions and specific national conditions. … Our country has a long, rich history of feudalism. It is lacking in democratic traditions and democratic culture. … [We] must have an open and inclusive attitude to selectively learn step by step from outstanding civilizations’ experiences in the development of a democratic political system." "To promote inner-party democracy, based on our current task, we must timely and comprehensively learn from the democratic experiences created and summarized in the nation’s reform process. … The creative practice of grassroots democracy within the party has crystallized the wisdom, hard work, responsibility, and vision of the grassroots party members and cadres." "To promote inner-party democracy … we must get rid of various erroneous arguments that occurred during the development of democracy, achieve a systematic connection, and promote systematic development and mechanism innovation under the framework of the law. We must encourage all party members and cadres to actively participate in the democratic process, exercise democratic skills, and develop democratic habits, to ensure the vitality and sustainability of inner-party democracy by institutional development."

"To practice democracy within the party, we must first break through the theory of democratic conditions and the fear of democracy. We must promote the practice of inner-party democracy without hesitation and be down to earth. … The essence of the democratic conditions theory is to postpone the practice of democracy into the unforeseeable future using the excuse of waiting for the conditions suitable for democracy to arrive. The essence of the fear of democracy is either people’s fear of losing their own privileges and special gains under democracy, or, due to their lack of understanding of democracy, taking it for granted that democracy will bring chaos and disorder." "To practice inner-party democracy, we must achieve a systematic connection among inner-party democracy, people’s democracy, and social democracy. … In the process of building China’s socialist democratic politics, the inner-party democracy is the core, the people’s democracy is the main project, while social democracy is the foundation. If there is no inner-party democracy, the development of democratic politics will lose its guidance and direction; if there is no people’s democracy, the development of democratic politics will lose its soul and the specifications for its system; if there is no social democracy, the development of democratic politics will lose its momentum and foundation. When implementing inner-party democracy leading people’s democracy, we must treat them as being linked overall and not overemphasize one and ignore the other. … The development of the inner-party democratic system, mechanisms, and procedures can help regulate the democratic practice and avoid disorder, confusion, impulsiveness, and blindness. The development of inner-party democracy must be under the rule of law, procedure-oriented, and normalized." "To practice democracy within the party, all party members and cadres must be encouraged to actively participate in the democratic process. … Party organizations at all levels must encourage party members to participate in a variety of democratic practices. Each individual member must show their enthusiasm, initiative and creativity. … When we learn while practicing and learn through practice, culture and structure, as well as attitudes and behavior continually interact with each other. The socialist democratic political culture will mature and improve together." "Only when we are prepared for danger in times of safety … and vigorously promote the development of inner-party democracy, will we be able to control the power of our voice in the global ideological competition … and ultimately promote the renaissance of the great course of building socialism with Chinese characteristics."

[1] Study Times, October 26, 2009
[2] Study Times, October 26, 2009
[3] Democratic centralism is the name given to the principles of internal organization used by Leninist political parties. … The democratic aspect of this organizational method describes the freedom of members of the political party to discuss and debate matters of policy and direction, but once the decision of the party is made by majority vote, all members are expected to uphold that decision. This latter aspect represents the centralism.

Retrospect and Prospects for the Security of China’s Periphery

In 2009, China’s periphery was generally stable. The situation has been “mitigated in the east, and is urgent in the west, harmonious in the north, and worrisome in the south.” On the east side, regarding the Sino-US and the Sino-Japan relationship, a situation quite rare in many years is that the parties get along very well, alleviating a lot of the pressure on security. Since President Obama took office, the U.S. government has been seeking to develop a positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship with China. The Sino-U.S. military dialogue, once halted due to the Bush administration’s arms sales to Taiwan, has resumed, improving the bilateral trust between high-level military leaders. [2] As Japan’s new Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has been actively promoting Asian diplomacy, the Sino-Japan relation has significantly improved. During Hatoyama’s visit to China, he promised to stick to the “Murayama Statement” in spirit on historical issues, bridge differences, build a reliable relationship, and promote a mutually beneficial strategic bond.

On the East China Sea issue, although there has been an overall improvement in the Sino-Japan relationship, disputes over maritime rights remain. Japan has stepped up the use of military force in monitoring the Diaoyu Islands (a.k.a. the Senkaku Islands), and has sought to expand its marine strategic domain. Japan is to construct harbor facilities on Chongniao Island (a.k.a. the Okinotorishima) in an effort to show “territorial sovereignty.”

At the same time, the security in the north continues to get better. The Sino-Russia relationship is deepening, with military cooperation as an important part of the bilateral strategic partnership. The “Peace Mission of 2009” joint anti-terrorist military exercise once again demonstrated the determination of the two countries to face new threats and challenges. The stable development has boosted the security partnership of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and has consolidated the stability of China’s northern border.

In 2009, new initiatives in regional cooperation emerged in Northeast Asia. The second China-Japan-S Korea Beijing summit issued the “China, Japan, and South Korea’s Joint Declaration on the Tenth Anniversary of Cooperation” and “China, Japan, and South Korea’s Joint Declaration on Sustainable Development,” setting up priorities for future trilateral cooperation. In the past, leaders of the three countries met only at the ASEAN 10+3 meeting. The newly initiated separate meeting reflects the emphasis of the three countries on Northeast Asian cooperation.

However, the security situation on China’s west is very urgent, and there are major worries in the south. The security situation in Afghanistan has become a major threat to the western frontier. With the war zone spreading into Pakistan, the borderline of the two countries has become the battlefield between the U.S. military with its allies and the Taliban/al-Qaeda group. The reverse development in Afghanistan’s security situation caused the religious extremists and international terrorist forces in Pakistan to surge. Terrorist activities are going rampant; they even heavily damaged the Pakistan army headquarters. The continued turmoil in Pakistan has led to tensions between Pakistan and India.
In 2009, the security situation on the south border deteriorated. India continued to create a tense atmosphere by sending additional troops to the disputed border, deploying high-tech equipment, and accelerating the migration of population to the region. Disregarding China’s strong opposition, India allowed the Dalai Lama to visit the Tawang region in an attempt to “contain China with Tibet.” In addition, in 2009, the Sino-Burmese border was not quiet. Myanmar government forces moved to the north, reorganized the minority armed forces, and raided the Bold region. This caused many refugees to move into Yunnan Province.

In 2009, the number of disputes on the South China Sea between China and its maritime neighbors in Southeast Asia significantly increased. With the approaching deadline for the countries to ratify UNCLOS (The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea), and to submit to the “Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf” regarding the “Case Concerning the Delimitation of the Outer Continental Shelf,” some countries are taking advantage of this time and re-delimiting the ocean boarders to compete with China for the ownership of the islands and the maritime space. China’s sovereignty over its maritime territory and the security of its maritime rights are facing major challenges.

The Philippine Congress passed the “Ocean Baseline Act,” which claimed the Huangyan Island and some of the reefs of the Nansha Islands (a.k.a. Spratly Islands), which are part of China. Vietnam submitted the case of “Delimitation of the Outer Continental Shelf,” claiming sovereignty over China’s Xisha Islands (a.k.a. the Paracel Islands) and Nansha Islands (a.k.a. the Spratly Islands). Malaysia and Vietnam jointly submitted proposals in order to take over and divide up the Nansha Islands. Malaysia’s Prime Minister and Defense Minister Badawi personally went to the Swallow Reef and Ardasier Reef of Nansha Island to declare sovereignty.

Factors complicating maritime security are increasing. The U.S. has strengthened its strategic investment in the western Pacific Ocean by deploying a large quantity of advanced naval and air forces into the region. Specifically, it deployed 12 F-22 Raptors to the Kadena Air Base, upgraded Okinawa into a level-1 combat base, expanded Alpha and Bravo piers, and deployed a new style Ohio class SSGN (nuclear-powered cruise missile submarine).

At the same time, the U.S. made more moves around the South China Sea. It held joint military exercises with the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore. In the year of 2009, the U.S. seemed to be more willing to step from behind the curtain to the front on disputes regarding rights on the South China Sea. It was involved in two “right of passage” incidents including the USNS Impeccable Incident and USS John McCain Incident.

India has also intensified its attention and penetration in the region. Its naval fleet held a joint naval exercise with Singapore, Vietnam, Japan, and South Korea on a cruise in the South China Sea. In addition, some countries around the South China Sea invited the oil companies of the U.S., Japan, the U.K., Italy, France, Russia, and other countries to join the event, in an attempt to internationalize the South China Sea issue. The involvement of the nations outside the region has further complicated the disputes over the South China Sea.

In 2009, forming a regional integration was gaining momentum. At the 15th ASEAN Summit, the 12th ASEAN 10+1 and 10+3 Summits, and the Fourth East Asia Summit, the focus was on the financial crisis and climate security, with a number of results achieved. ASEAN 10+3 leaders agreed to establish an East Asian foreign exchange reserve so as to safeguard regional financial market stability. What is particularly worth mentioning is that the leaders of the countries also agreed to promote the East Asian Community (EAC). In addition, the U.S., showing great interest in participating in the regional integration, signed the “Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia” with ASEAN countries.

In 2009, the cooperation among the member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in promoting regional economic development and safeguarding regional security and stability continued to progress. Leaders signed the “Yekaterinburg Declaration” and agreed to actively promote cooperation in new industries, facilitate trade and investment, explore the potential in observer countries and dialogue partners, and expand areas of cooperation. In addition, member states also signed the “Convention on Counterterrorism,” further consolidating the legal basis for cooperation in combating terrorism.

As each state has its own motivation for promoting regional cooperation, the interests interlock with conflicts. The U.S. was highly worried about the idea of the East Asian Community (EAC) proposed by Japan, claiming it would exacerbate the “grouping” of the world economies, with an “adverse effect on the Sino-US strategic balance.” The U.S. wishes to break the EAC with the U.S. style of cooperation by strengthening its control across the Pacific region and coordination in the region. The U.S. said it would follow the ASEAN +3 model, where China, Japan, and South Korea joined with ASEAN to establish a free trade area, and establish a 10 +1 version with ASEAN. The U.S. also put forward the “USA – Mekong Basin cooperation” to compete with China’s “Lancang – Mekong sub-regional cooperation.” Japan’s high-profile launch of the EAC idea was for a relationship with U.S. on an equal footing and accelerating the process of “breaking away from the U.S. and joining Asia.” Its launch of the mechanism of the “Japan – Mekong Ministerial Conference,” and the holding of the “Japan – Mekong Summit” were for developing a geo-political advantage comparable to China. Australia’s strategic view resembles that of the U.S. It has its own idea of integration, hoping to establish an “Asia-Pacific community” that includes the U. S. so as to weaken Japan’s EAC. The ASEAN countries are both looking forward to and on alert for the EAC, fearing that the dominance of regional cooperation might drift. ASEAN sought to pull big powers outside the region into the East Asia cooperation network, so that major powers would contain each other. They constructed the “ASEAN – Russia Summit,” and also timely launched the “U.S. – ASEAN Summit.”

However, the disharmony factors on China’s periphery will remain for a long time. There is a long way to go to achieve perimeter security. The North Korea nuclear issue, which caused tension in the region, is difficult to improve within a short period of time. The security issues in the post-North Korean-nuclear-crisis need to be prepared for. Obama’s plan of sending more troops to Afghanistan will anger the extremist forces in Afghanistan. It has become increasingly evident that Afghanistan is becoming a second Iraq. Obama’s new Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy continues to drag Pakistan into the quagmire of the U.S.’s war on terrorism. The situation in South Asia will still be volatile. The United States’ interest in Myanmar suddenly increased. Giving up hope of changing the regime, it has instead attempted to utilize the current regime to put in a new strategic wedge in Southeast Asia. In the South China Sea, although the situation has some degree of control, the effects of the involvement of countries outside the region should not be underestimated. China is in the situation of one versus many, and also in the situation of big versus small. This can easily lead to international misunderstandings. Variables in perimeter security have increased, and therefore the task of strengthening mutual trust and nurturing agreement on security can still be arduous.

[1] Global Times, December 31, 2009
[2] This article was written prior to U.S. President Obama’s announcement on January 29, 2010, of an arms sale package to Taiwan worth about $6.4 billion.

The State Council’s General Office Guideline on How to Boost the Development of the Film Industry

Movies are one form of recreational culture that the people deeply love.  The film industry is a culture industry that is high-tech, and highly profitable, with a low resource consumption and little environmental pollution. Therefore, it is of great significance to vigorously develop the film industry for the construction of Socialist culture … for the expansion of the Chinese culture’s international competitiveness and influence, and for strengthening the nation’s cultural soft power. …  In order to thoroughly implement the 17th CCP Congress’ important plan of advancing the development and prosperity of the socialist culture, to earnestly implement the central government’s strategy to deal with the international financial crisis, to maintain a stable and rapid economic growth, to accelerate the development of the culture industry, and to boost the development of the film industry, under the consent of the State Council, (the office) now proposes the following guidelines.
General requirements

Under the guidance of Deng Xiaoping Theory and the "Three Represents," … firmly grasp the correct direction …  to spread the Socialist core value system, and walk the path of developing the film industry with Chinese characteristics.

The basic principles

1. Persist in the right direction, scientific development. Accurately seize the film industry’s two major characteristics of both ideology and a cultural commodity product; unleash the dual function of entertainment and education.

2. Adhere to the principle of being people-oriented, serving the public.

3. Operate according to the market, develop according to the government.

4.  Break through on major projects; advance as a whole.

The development goals

The overall objective is: by the end of the year 2015 … to establish an operating system … and an administrative system for the film industry, and to establish a digital distribution and movie playing network covering urban and rural areas; to comprehensively enhance production creativity, management capacity, technological innovation, and public service capacity, as well as international dissemination capability. 

1. Creativity, management skills and brand influence must significantly improve.

2. The supporting role of science and technology must be significantly enhanced.

3. Infrastructure must be improved significantly. Between 2009 and 2012, the transformation of digital cinema at the prefectural level should be completed, and partially done at the county level; between 2013 and 2015, the transformation of digital cinema should be completed at the county level. The eastern region and other affluent regions may lead the action. 

4. The products should be rich in content and have variety.

5. Industry efficiency must significantly improve. Economic aggregation in the film industry has an annual growth rate of 20 percent.

6. Public service capacity should be strengthened significantly. Strengthen the development of digital cinemas in rural areas and schools. … Ensure that each administrative village can play a movie every month, and ensure that each semester there will be two educational patriotic movies played for primary and secondary school students.

7. International competitiveness increases by the day. Actively push the movies to go international. Establish a movie business which has international competitiveness and has influence in the international dissemination system, so as to develop domestic movie products that have international market demand. Hold Chinese Movie Panoramas in public overseas, to participate in international film festivals and to organize commercial promotional activities overseas, to continuously improve the international influence of Chinese-made movies, to continuously improve international competitiveness and market share, and to constantly enhance the country’s cultural soft power.

Major initiatives

1. Increase creativity and massively increase productivity.

While maintaining a steady growth in volume, focus more on improving the quality … and put effort into strengthening ideology.

2. Actively nurture new enterprises. 

Accelerate the transformation of state-owned film enterprises into private or public corporations.

3. Continue to expand the scale of operation.

4. Strongly support building digital cinemas in the cities and towns.

5. Encourage greater policy support of investment and fund-raising.

6. Actively promote technology innovation.

7. Strengthen public services.

8. Strive to improve international influence.

Accelerate the development of overseas markets, increase the marketing efforts overseas to promote domestic films, expand channels, improve the network and explore channels for establishing overseas marketing systems that promote China-made films in the international mainstream film market. Support the film industry as well as movie products to participate in important international film festivals and trading markets. Prepare well and run the "Shanghai International Film Festival" and other activities. Accelerate the pace of established channels overseas to promote the "China Movie Channel" by sharing channels with others, renting cable TV networks and utilizing the Internet, and expanding the size of the user base. Actively establish a cooperation mechanism with foreign governments, international film festival exhibition organizers, film institutions, social organizations, and industry associations. Cooperate with foreign companies to produce movies and continue to hold the Chinese Film Panorama and other activities. Strive to increase international influence.

9. Continue to improve the monitoring and surveillance system. 

10. Vigorously put effort into building up the team.


Li Yuanchao Explains Personnel System Reform for Chinese Communist Cadres

Reform of the cadres’ personnel system is an important task that the 17th National Congress initiated. It was specifically explained and planned in the fourth plenary session (of the 17th Congress) “Resolution,” which demonstrated that further advancing reform is an extremely important and pressing task for us to strengthen the foundation of the Party’s rule and accomplish the Party’s mission as the ruling party. …

As our country gets more involved in globalization, we not only must face intense competition in the economy, science, and technology, but we also must face intense competition in ideology, the system, and politics. The competitiveness of the cadre personnel system is the key element in the competiveness of a country’s political system. To win over the preemptive stance in international competition in politics, we must further advance the reform of the personnel system, so as to provide a system that guarantees a high quality of cadres and leaders. …

Based on the guiding spirit of the 17th National Congress of the CCP and the fourth plenary session of the 17th National Congress, to carry out the reform of the personnel system, we must stick to the principle of the “Party taking control of the cadres.” It cannot be changed at any event. The authority to appoint personnel is one of the most important authorities for a ruling party. During the reform, giving up this principle of the “Party taking control of cadres” is equivalent to giving up the ruling authority and the ruling position of the Party. …

The “Resolution” of the fourth plenary session asked us to further advance the personnel system reform from five aspects. … There are tasks in eight areas. The first one is to establish and perfect a system to select, appoint, and nominate cadres. The second is to perfect the evaluation system. The third is to select cadres openly and encourage candidates to assume certain positions to be able to compete with one another. The fourth is to advance the reform of cadre training and education. The fifth is to perfect the selection system for young cadres and future-generation cadres, and establish a training and selection chain for the Party leaders from the grass roots level. The sixth is to develop a system of management which embodies both discipline and warm care. The seventh is to enhance communication among the cadres. The eighth is to improve morality in selecting candidates, and improve the credibility of the selection process.

Continuing to train cadres and improve their quality is another important task required by the 17th National Congress. … First, we must enhance the training in ideology, arm the cadres with the theory of socialism with Chinese characteristics, strengthen education in the Party’s principles, and remain firm in our ideology. Second, we must improve the training in capabilities, especially competence in strategic planning, handling mass work and public service, and in maintaining social stability. Put emphasis on improving the ability to handle urgent issues, the ability to guide public opinion and use new types of media, and to conduct work with minority and religious groups. Third, we must establish the concept of training cadres based on our needs. … Fourth, we must continue to foster open competition, making the Party academy and administrative schools the main channel, and main battlefield in the training; at the same time, we must make higher institutions such as universities an important place to train cadres. Fifth, we must treat the cadre’s moral training as an urgent task.

Looking at the status quo of our cadre teams and the requirements for future development, we must do well in three areas. The first is to strengthen the nurturing of Party culture and train cadres through practice. … Second is to do well in the development of future cadre teams. Put emphasis on educating and nurturing them, and assigning them specific tasks as well, particularly training in and the practice of the Party’s principles. We must do well in the development of future cadre teams for important positions. We must do better in selecting and training female cadres, minority cadres and cadres from outside the Party. … Third is to explore and establish a system wherein the upper level Party organization selects cadres from lower levels, and establishes a selection and training chain starting from the base level [the lowest level]. It is our emphasis to guide the base level cadres in the right direction, and we should establish and perfect the method of selecting cadres for townships from the village level, selecting cadres for the county level from the township level, and increase the percentage of public officers from lower levels. When there is a vacancy in the local Party and the politics division at the county level or above, those cadres who have had experience at the base level will be the first group of candidates. We should select and appoint college graduates to be village cadres, and make sure they are willing to stay, and can do well at their job.

For the Party to take control of the Party, the key is to take good control of the Party cadres. For the Party to be strict in administration, the first thing is to strictly manage the Party cadres. …

According to the “Resolution,” we must do well in four areas in the exchanges among Party cadres. First, we must center on scientific development, and greatly promote the exchanges between different areas, and between the local level and the central organizations. We must continue to select good cadres and talented young cadres who have worked in the eastern developed regions to serve in the western regions, and send those good, or promising cadres working in the mid-west to work in the eastern developed regions to train them. We must continue to select good cadres from central organizations to take positions at local levels. We must do well in the exchange in issues like exploring the west, reviving the old industrial districts such as the northeastern regions, developing the central region, the development of key projects and the backbone industries of our country, and supporting Tibet and Xinjiang, etc. Second, we must promote exchanges among cadres and leaders holding key positions. During the past several years, we have had exchanges among the Party and politics division, the secretary of the discipline division, the directors of organization departments, directors of the people’s court, directors of the procuratorate, and directors of the police department. Next, we should establish a system to appoint cadres to a place that is not their hometown, especially for those key positions. Third, we must promote exchange and rotation among intermediate level cadres. Cadres should rotate in those positions that mange human resources, finance, discipline and legislation. … Fourth, the exchange channel between administrative organizations and enterprises should be refined. We must do research to come up with a method to accomplish this kind of exchange.

[1] Study Times, November 30, 2009

Is the Real Estate Business a Threat to China’s Economy?

The director of the Office of Economic Development of the Economy Research Institute, China Social Science Institute, Xianrong Yi, commented half jokingly, when Stock Daily interviewed him, “Housing prices will not drop even if we build houses using soil from the moon. The current market is a hyped up market.” The general manager of Lianda Sifang Real Estate, Inc., Beijing, Shaofeng Yang, said, “The majority of the new buildings in Beijing were sold out even before the construction was completed. However, only 30-40% of the apartments are occupied, even though it has been two years since construction was completed. It would be really good if 50% had residents.”

A phenomenon exists in the real estate market. On the one hand, a group of people are waiting in line to purchase houses; on the other hand, the vacancy rate is getting higher and higher. Almost all the new buildings are dark when night falls. In the area outside of Wuhuan of Chaoyang District, Beijing, a building with 2,000 apartments sold out a long time ago. However, only 30% of the apartments have residents. The realtor in the community said, “The majority of the apartment buyers are investors. There are relatively few real residents.” The same situation exists in Shenzhen City and Shanghai City. In many of those communities, the rate of occupancy is less than 50%.

According to international convention, it is normal if the vacancy rate is 5% to 10%; it is risky if the vacancy rate reaches 10%-20%. If the vacancy rate is over 20%, there is a serious overbuilding of commercial housing.

Xin Zhang, the CEO of SOHO of China also indicated that, in Manhattan, people would feel that the end of world was coming if the vacancy rate reached 10 to 15%. However, in Pudong, the eastern part of Shanghai, the vacancy rate is as high as 50%. Nonetheless, new skyscrapers are still being built.

Bin Yu, the director for the Macroeconomic Research Department of the Center for Development Research in the State Council, stated that real estate accounts for 6.6% of China’s GDP and a quarter of all investments. Sixty different industries are directly related to real estate and have become the heart of China’s economy. Once the real estate industry has major problems, the industries that depend on real estate, such as the production of reinforced concrete and the middle to large-scale enterprises that invest in real estate will suffer major damage. That may induce a major loss of capital and the destruction of China as an economic entity. More seriously, those banks that loan large amounts of money to real estate industries will have trillions of bad or dead accounts, which will ruin China’s financial industries. …

In July 2004, Xianrong Yi warned, “We should carefully protect ourselves from the situation where real estate threatens China’s entire economy.” At the time, he pointed out clearly that the real estate industry has been bound together with the economy of the whole country and with people’s personal interests. It is threatening China’s economy. He used the example of Japan in the 1990s and reminded that once problems occur in the real estate industry, the economy of the whole country will quickly go into a period of crisis. From Bin Yu’s analysis, it can be seen that five years ago, Xianrong Yi, unfortunately, made the right prediction. It is hard not to associate the current situation of China’s real estate market with the breaking of the real estate bubble in the early 1990s in Japan in the last century.

Some economists hold the view that, just like Japan, the experiences of many places have proved that it is very inappropriate and unsafe to use real estate as the major industry to support the economy. The high housing prices can directly affect the expenses in other areas of life and, therefore, affect the overall feeling of happiness. Just as Xianrong Yi pointed out, when real estate becomes “hijacked,” for luxurious consumption forced on people’s livelihood, then economic development based on real estate is absolutely irrational.

Xianping Lang once stated to the media that, “None of the big countries dares to make real estate the major industry. If all the money went to real estate in order to create a high GPA, how could people spend money to buy other things? If none of the people in the country work in the manufacturing industry, and everybody plays the stock market, where can the country go?”

As the housing prices keep soaring, the average people have to pay more to buy a place to live. The anxiety caused by being able to afford a place is getting more and more intense. The soaring prices directly affect people’s choice of expenses, while anxiety affects people’s expectations in spending their money. Those two factors are the major causes for the prolonged inactive internal markets in China. When all of your savings throughout your life are spent to buy an apartment, how can you expect people to spend money on anything else? That is why we can say that the high housing prices have seriously affected the recovery of the economy in China. To increase GDP through real estate is like drinking poisonous water to quench your thirst.

In Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, apartments close to the metropolitan areas are all above 20,000 yuan per square meter and those in the cities are 30,000 yuan. An average family has to spend at least 4,000,000 yuan in order to by a place that is 120 square meters. According to the investigation of Stock Daily, the apartments in the Lujiazui region in Pudong of Shanghai City are priced at 70,000 per square meter. Every suite costs more than tens of millions of yuan.

According to the report published in a Reference News article, “The Korean Finance Group Bought the AIG Building in New York City for a Low Price,” the purchasing group of Young Woo & Associates bought AIG’s building in New York City for the price of $150 million, a unit price of $100 per square foot. That is less than $1,077 per square meter. That is to say, Chinese can buy landmark buildings in Manhattan for the price of 7,300 yuan per square meter.

According to the statistics of the U.S. Ministry of Commerce, the average price of a house in the U. S. is $200,000, which is 1 million yuan. In addition, the so called “houses” in the U.S. are actually “villas” in China, which have a garage, a yard and a swimming pool. The well-known commentator Hanbing Shi once questioned, “What kind of house can you buy for 1 million yuan in China?”

A government official in Ningbo City once gave out the information that in the recent two months, 18 more real estate companies emerged in the city. They were all once in manufacturing. Due to the inactive market in the manufacturing industry, they used all their money to buy high-priced land. The reason of course is the amazing profit in the real estate market.

From this year, under the situation that the national GDP was 30 trillion yuan in 2008, in order to stimulate the internal market, the major banks loaned out an amazing amount of money, about 10 trillion yuan. Most of the money went to state owned enterprises. After obtaining the money, they then purchased land. Therefore, these “landlords” emerged one after another. For example, the land at No. 15 Guangqu Road in Beijing, land at Changfeng in Shanghai, and at Tianchu No. 22 in Shunyi, are all owned by state owned enterprises.

In addition to the many people who buy and sell houses for profit, the number of people who bought houses to receive fixed investment income is also large. How long does it take to get the money back if the house is rented out? A researcher at the Yiju Real Estate Research Center in Shanghai told Stock Daily, “The 100-square-meter houses in the center of Shanhai City rent for 7,000 yuan a month. You need to pay about 4-5 million yuan to buy one. Therefore, if you want to get your money back through rent, you have to wait about 60 years. Furthermore, that is not an example of the recent low rental rates in big cities in China.

In the Rainbow City Community in the South Sanhuan of Beijing City, a 100-saqure-meter second-hand apartment is listed at 1.6 million yuan. The real estate agent for the community told the reporter that when those kinds of apartments are on sale, they can definitely be sold within five days. However, the rent for such an apartment is only 2,000 yuan a month. That is to say, the owner cannot get his money back until 800 months later, which is 66 years.

According to an investigation by the Market Research Department of Meilian Real Estate, Inc., since November 2009, the rental and selling ratio has broken the historic record of 1:150 and reached 1:525. Some regions have reached 1:700. However, the ratio was 1:400 in 2008. The increment is 25%, which does not include the newly built houses that can be rented. The vacancy rate has also been increasing.

The international standard for a reasonable rent and selling ratio is below 1:250. That means if you rent the house out according to the price for the current market and you are able to get your money back within 100-230 months (10-20 years), the house is not too expensive, and buying a house is a good investment.

However, when the housing price is soaring, wealthy people buy high priced houses not only in order to maintain the value or as an investment; more and more regular employees have joined a group that is “buying houses to make money.” The wealthy people who buy houses to maintain the value do not care at all whether the rental fee is high or low. The profit gained through the rising housing prices also makes more and more average people become negligent about the rental price. All people across the country have joined the trend of buying and selling houses. …

According to the latest statistics on Beijing Real Estate Trading Management Net, since November, the closing rate for second-hand houses has broken the record of 20,000 units, or 1,031 units each day on average, which is a sharp increase compared to the 600-700 closing rate some time ago. If predicted according to the current trend in 2009, the total trading rate of second-hand houses in Beijing in 2009 will break 270,000 units, which is greater than the sum of the rates of the three previous years from 2006 to 2008. Zhang Dawei, the general director for the Market Research Department of Meilian Real Estate Inc. indicated that it is dreadful that a “need for purchasing a house out of terror” has emerged in the market in just a short period of time, due to people’s worries about an end to beneficial government policies and soaring housing prices. Those people have made the housing prices soar, together with those who have invested in houses in Beijing. Furthermore, people have become more and more emotional as the housing prices have become higher and higher. Currently, those two kinds of needs in real estate are counted as over 50% of the market. In the U.S., the average price of a house is $200,000, which is a little over 1 million yuan and is actually the villa that Chinese inside China refer to. However, in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, it costs at least 3 million yuan to buy a house of similar size that is close to the city.

[1] China Economic Net, November 28