British expert says achievements of Party 'unprecedented in human history'
Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, Chinese president and chairman of the Central Military Commission, delivers an important speech at a ceremony marking the centenary of the CPC in Beijing, July 1, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]
On the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, overseas experts say the Party's popularity will continue to grow across the country as it is deeply rooted in the people and serves the needs of the people.
Speaking at a grand gathering to mark the centenary of the CPC in Beijing on Thursday, Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, said: "This country is its people; the people are the country. As we have fought to establish and consolidate our leadership over the country, we have in fact been fighting to earn and keep the people's support."
He added: "The Party has in the people its roots, its lifeblood, and its source of strength. The Party has always represented the fundamental interests of all Chinese people; it stands with them through thick and thin and shares a common fate with them."
The success of the CPC lies in the simple fact that "it has heard the people and delivers the people's realistic needs", said Stephen Perry, chairman of The 48 Group Club, an independent business network group committed to promoting trade and cultural links between the United Kingdom and China.
"China has transitioned from the 'sick man of Asia' to a leading global nation in those 100 years. This is due to the hard work and sacrifice of the people of China and the CPC leadership based on hearing the people and developing realistic steps to rebuild China," he told China Daily.
"Without the people, this could not be achieved, and without the CPC this could not be achieved," he added. "The CPC has used hard work and commitment to find the right paths and been brave in innovation."
Since it was established in July 1921, the CPC has led China to transform from a large but poor and weak nation to the world's second-largest economy, lifting about 770 million of its people out of poverty.
"This is unprecedented in human history and unprecedented in world history," Perry said, adding: "China's management of the planned economy is unique and marrying it with the market economy is a great innovation which many nations will benefit from over time."
"The CPC has 95 million members and it is a base for selfless commitment to helping China find its rejuvenation targets and help other nations who seek help," he said.
A study published by Harvard University last July showed that the CPC-led Chinese government enjoys a high rate of support and satisfaction among the Chinese people, at a rate of more than 93 percent.
"With achievements like that, it would be most surprising if it did not, because to transform the living conditions, the quality, and the expectations of society and the Chinese people, has created entirely new possibilities for its population," said Martin Jacques, a leading British Sinologist.
"If a party or a government is capable of doing it, it's going to be enormously popular. There is nowhere else in the world probably that could achieve these kind of levels of satisfaction, so I do not think we should be surprised by it," he said during an interview with China Daily.
George Koo, a retired international business adviser in Silicon Valley, the United States, and a political commentator, agreed.
"The most obvious success of the CPC is the fact that they have taken care of all the people in China. By taking care of all the people, they have popular support, the overwhelming percentage of support, like no other government or party has been able to enjoy anywhere in the world."
Kin Phea, director-general of the International Relations Institute of Cambodia at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said unity between the Party and the people is crucial for China's development.
"Over the last century, the CPC has remained true to its original aspiration and mission of pursuing the well-being of the Chinese people, leading them in an arduous and never-ending struggle that has resulted in fundamental changes not only in the destiny and future of the Chinese people and nation, but also in the destiny and future of the peoples and nations in the region and the world."
In his speech on Thursday, Xi also said that "a hallmark that distinguishes the Communist Party of China from other political parties is its courage in undertaking self-reform".
Jacques agreed that the ability to reform is another reason that the CPC has achieved so much.
"The CPC has this extraordinary reforming capacity," he said. "One of the things that the CPC has been remarkably good at is moving with the times. It understands the dynamics of the society and moving with it, and therefore being able to change the direction whenever it needs to change."
As an example of the reform-oriented mindset, Jacques noted how late leader Deng Xiaoping had realized that the centralized economic governance system was hindering China's economy before the 1980s. Deng led the nation to embrace the market as integral to China's socialist system, and ultimately, the nation was integrated into the global economy.
"That was a very bold thing to do, and bore enormous fruits. That has transported China from being a very poor country where most people were poor, to a situation where it has abolished extreme poverty and become the largest economy in the world measured by GDP purchasing power parity, according to the World Bank," he added.
On the basis of these achievements, Jacques believes that China has moved from being the recipient of the global order to increasingly become proactive and the shaper of the global order.
Jacques said he expects the popularity of the CPC to grow further, "because as China becomes a global power, the prestige and status of China and the Chinese is going to rise, and that in its turn will reflect very well on the popularity of the CPC".
Christopher Bovis, a professor of international business law at the University of Hull in the UK, said: "The reforms of China's economic system and society confirm policy directions, which are based on market-based resource allocation, a pivotal role for public ownership, and a strong emphasis on industrial policies and science and technology to achieve the goals of socialist modernization."
"Chinese people are receiving loud and clear such messages and endorse the political system at large," Bovis told China Daily.
Lia Zhu in San Francisco and Yang Han in Hong Kong contributed to this story.