Politics in China is a mystery to anyone outside of the nation and not many will move beyond the label of “authoritarian”, and perhaps a few other names, so today, let’s take a bit of deeper dive into the core element of China’s political system which is the Communist Party of China (CPC) – 中国共产党 which can also be referred to as the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Note, I will try to make this as brief and as easily digestible as I can from an objective viewpoint.
Firstly it’s worth noting that the CPC is not the only political party in China. Other parties include
- Revolutionary Committee of the Chinese Kuomintang (RCCK) – 中国国民党革命委员会 (民革)
- China Democratic League (CDL) 中国民主同盟 (民盟)
China Democratic National Construction Association (CDNCA) 中国民主建国会 (民建)
- China Association for Promoting Democracy (CAPD) 中国民主促进会 (民进)
- Chinese Peasants’ and Workers’ Democratic Party (CPWDP) 中国农工民主党 (农工党)
China Zhi Gong Party (CZGP) 中国致公党 (致公党)
- Jiusan Society (JS) 九三学社
- Taiwan Democratic Self-Government League (TDSGL) 台湾民主自治同盟 (台盟)
The realization of communism is the highest ideal and ultimate goal of the Party.The Communist Party of China uses Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Theory of Three Represents, the Scientific Outlook on Development, and Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era as its guides to action.
The Four Cardinal Principles—to keep to the path of socialism, to uphold the people’s democratic dictatorship, to uphold the leadership of the Communist Party of China, and to uphold Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought—form the foundation for building the country. Throughout the whole course of socialist modernization, the Party must adhere to the Four Cardinal Principles and oppose bourgeois liberalization.
Becoming a member of the CCP
What are the strategic objectives of the Party?
The centenary of the People’s Republic of China is a big milestone. And it is core to the party’s current strategic goals. Knowing that its survival is only mandated the people currently due to economic success future goals by this time are stated as raising the per capita GDP to the level of moderately developed countries and to realize the nation’s modernisation.
Other notable goals are deeper integration of the party into society as per President Xi Jinping’s statement “Government, the military, society and schools, north, south, east and west – the party leads them all”. Establishing a National Supervision Commission in tandem with the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection that will oversee all public institution workers.
More about national goals in a coming post on governance.
How is the Chinese Communist Party Structured?
The National Party Congress
It’s the pivotal meeting of members which is held every five years. It is the CPC’s organ of supreme power as it here that the next leaders are chosen to be the members of the Central Committee.
The National Party Congress also examines the reports of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, deliberates on major major issues of the Party, reviews the Party constitution and to elect the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.
The General Secretary
The General Secretary is also the President of the country and the leader of the Central Military Commission.
The general secretary of the Central Committee is responsible for calling sessions of both the Political Bureau and its Standing Committee and is in charge of the work of the Secretariat of the Central Committee.
The Politburo Standing Committee
The top leadership of the Communist Party of China and is headed by the General Secretary. Currently, it has seven members. Its officially mandated purpose is to conduct policy discussions and make decisions on major issues when the Politburo is not in session.
A group of 25 people who oversee the Communist Party of China and are all elected by the plenary session of the Central Committee. When the plenum of the Central Committee is not in session, the Politburo Bureau and its Standing Committee exercise the functions and powers of the Central Committee.
The Secretariat of the Central Committee
A body currently comprising of seven members who serve the Politburo and its Standing Committee. The Secretariat carries out routine operations of the Politburo and tasks as set out by the Politburo. Considered to be some of the most important political positions in the Communist Party
The Central Committee
It is elected by the National Party Congress. When the National Party Congress is not in session, the Central Committee leads all the work of the Party and represents the CPC outside the Party. It is elected for a term of five years.
Offices and departments directly under the Central Committee of the CPC are
- General Affairs Office
- Organization Department
- Publicity Department
- International Liaison Department
- United Front Work Department
- Policy Research Office
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection
Tasked with maintaining the CPC’s constitution and examine the effectiveness of the party in its activities. It reports to the Central Committee.
Grassroots organizations of the Party are set up in enterprises, rural villages, organizations, schools, research institutes, neighborhoods, the People’s Liberation Army companies and other basic units.
Local organizations of the CPC include congresses of various provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central Government, cities with districts, autonomous prefectures, counties, autonomous counties and cities without districts.
What are the official media outlets of the Communist Party of China (CPC)?
The People’s Daily 人民日报 is the official paper of the CPC.
Quishi is the party’s monthly magazine http://www.qstheory.cn
The United Work Front has its own news portal http://www.zytzb.gov.cn/tzb2010/index.shtml
The International Department of the CPC also has its own news portal http://www.idcpc.org.cn/jwdt/
The Organization Department has its own news portal http://news.12371.cn/dzybmbdj/zzb/gzdt/
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection has its own news portal http://www.ccdi.gov.cn/