Opening ceremony of the 19th CPC National Congress

Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, delivers a report to the Congress. [Photo/Xinhua]
Editor’s note: presents you a live coverage of the opening session of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) at 9 a.m., Oct. 18, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

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[12:33] Li Keqiang: Fellow delegates,

General Secretary Xi Jinping, on behalf of the 18th CPC Central Committee, delivered a report to the Congress just now.

Please conscientiously deliberate the report according to arrangements. The Congress is now adjourned.

[12:23] Xi: We will deepen reform of the national supervision system, conduct trials throughout the country, and establish supervisory commissions at the national, provincial, city, and county levels, which share offices and work together with the Party’s disciplinary inspection commissions. This will ensure that supervision covers everyone in the public sector who exercises public power. A national supervision law will be formulated. Supervisory commissions will be given responsibilities, powers, and means of investigation in accordance with law. The practice of “shuanggui” will be replaced by detention. (“Shuanggui” refers to a form of intraparty disciplinary action that requires a Party member under investigation to cooperate with questioning at a designated place and a designated time.)

A more powerful synergy for oversight will be created by integrating intra-Party oversight with oversight by state organs, democratic oversight, judicial oversight, public oversight, and oversight through public opinion.

[12:20] Xi: The Communist Party of China will secure a sweeping victory in its fight against corruption to avoid the historical cycle of rise and fall.

The fight against corruption never ends and currently remains grave and complex. We must remain as firm as a rock in our resolve to build on the overwhelming momentum and secure a sweeping victory. Both those who take bribes and those who offer them will be punished and interest groups will be prevented from arising within the Party.

Wherever offenders may flee, they shall be brought back and brought to justice.

The CPC will work for the adoption of national anti-corruption legislation and create a corruption reporting platform that covers both disciplinary inspection commissions and supervision agencies.

The CPC will enhance deterrence so that officials dare not commit corruption, strengthen the institutional cage so that they have no way to commit corruption, and raise their consciousness of staying away from corruption.

[11:58] China remains firm in pursuing an independent foreign policy of peace.

China will never pursue development at the expense of others’ interests, and will never give up its legitimate rights and interests. No one should expect China to swallow anything that undermines its interests.

China pursues a defensive national defense policy. China’s development does not pose a threat to any other country. China will never seek hegemony or engage in expansion no matter what stage of development it reaches.

China has actively developed global partnerships and expanded the convergence of interests with other countries.

[11:57] Xi called on all countries to work together for a clean and beautiful world and tackle climate change through cooperation.

He called on the people of all countries to work together to build a community with a shared future for mankind, to build an open, inclusive, clean, and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security, and common prosperity.

Xi proposes that all countries in the world be good friends to the environment, cooperate to tackle climate change, and protect the planet for the sake of human survival.

[11:52] Xi: We stand firm in safeguarding the nation’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and will never allow the historical tragedy of national division to repeat itself.

We have the resolve, confidence and ability to defeat separatist attempts for “Taiwan independence” in any form.

We will never allow anyone, any organization, or any political party, at any time or in any form, to separate any part of Chinese territory from China.

[11:50] Xi: We are ready to share development opportunities on the mainland with our Taiwan compatriots first.

We will ensure that over time, people from Taiwan will enjoy the same treatment as local people when they pursue their studies, start businesses, seek jobs, or live on the mainland, thus improving the wellbeing of Taiwan compatriots. People from both sides are encouraged to work together to promote Chinese culture and forge closer bonds between them.

[11:49] Xi: The 1992 Consensus embodies the one-China principle and defines the fundamental nature of cross-Straits relations.

Recognize the historical fact of the 1992 Consensus and that the two sides both belong to one China, and then our two sides can conduct dialogue to address through discussion the concerns of the people of both sides, and no political party or group in Taiwan will have any difficulty conducting exchanges with the mainland.

[11:48] Xi: Patriots should play “the principal role” as the Hong Kong people govern Hong Kong and the Macao people govern Macao.

We will develop and strengthen the ranks of patriots who love both our country and their regions, and foster greater patriotism and a stronger sense of national identity among the people in Hong Kong and Macao.

[11:47] Xi: We will continue to support Hong Kong and Macao in integrating their own development into the overall development of the country.

The priority will be given to the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area; cooperation between Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macao; and regional cooperation in the pan-Pearl River Delta.

Policies will be improved to make it more convenient for the people from Hong Kong and Macao to pursue career development on the mainland.

[11:46] Xi: The policy of “one country, two systems” is the best solution to the questions of Hong Kong and Macao, and has proved to be the best institutional guarantee for the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macao after their return.

The governments and chief executives of both regions will be supported to advance democracy with well-ordered steps, maintain law and order, and fulfill the constitutional responsibility of safeguarding China’s sovereignty, security, and development interests.

[11:45] Xi: The CPC will speed up development of intelligent military, and improve combat capabilities for joint operations based on network information system and the ability to fight under multi-dimensional conditions.

[11:42] Xi said that by 2020, mechanization will be basically achieved, and the modernization of national defense and armed forces should be basically completed by 2035.

[11:41] Xi: The CPC will build a powerful and modernized army, navy, air force, rocket force, and strategic support force, develop strong and efficient joint operations commanding institutions for theater commands, and create a modern combat system with distinctive Chinese characteristics.

[11:39] Xi: iv. To reform the environmental regulation system.

China will establish regulatory agencies to manage state-owned natural resource assets and monitor natural ecosystems.

China will develop a nature reserves system composed mainly of national parks.

[11:38] Xi: iii. To intensify the protection of ecosystems.

[11:37] Xi: ii. To solve prominent environmental problems.

[11:36] Xi: i. To promote green development.

[11:34] Xi: The modernization that we pursue is one characterized by harmonious coexistence between man and nature. In addition to creating more material and cultural wealth to meet people’s ever-increasing needs for a better life, we need also to provide more quality ecological goods to meet people’s ever-growing demands for a beautiful environment.

[11:27] Xi: Seeing that poor people and poor areas will enter the moderately prosperous society together with the rest of the country is a solemn promise made by our Party. We should mobilize the energies of our whole Party, our whole country, and our whole society, and continue to implement targeted poverty reduction and alleviation measures.

We must ensure that by the year 2020, all rural residents living below the current poverty line will have been out of poverty, and poverty is eliminated in all poor counties and regions. Poverty alleviation should reach those who truly need it and deliver genuine outcomes.

[11:16] Xi: We need to deepen structural reform of cultural sector, improve the cultural management system and accelerate the establishment of systems and mechanisms that put social benefits first while pursuing economic returns.

We will improve our capacity for engaging in international communication so as to tell China’s stories well, present a true, multi-dimensional, and panoramic view of China, and enhance our country’s cultural soft power.

[11:14] Xi: Writers and artists should take a people-centered approach and draw inspiration from everyday life and the experiences of the people to produce works that do justice to our times. We encourage them to create fine works that are thought provoking and of a high artistic standard, that reflect real life, and that extol our Party, our country, our people, and our heroes.

[11:06] Xi: The political system of socialism with Chinese characteristics is a great creation of the CPC and the Chinese people. We have every confidence that we can give full play to the strengths and distinctive features of China’s socialist democracy, and make China’s contribution to the political advancement of mankind.

[11:05] Xi: Advancing law-based governance in all fields is a profound revolution in China’s governance. The CPC must promote the rule of law to ensure sound lawmaking, strict law enforcement, impartial administration of justice, and the observance of law by everyone. The CPC will set up a central leading group for advancing law-based governance in all areas. The move is aimed at exercising unified leadership over the initiative to build rule of law in China. The CPC will strengthen oversight to ensure compliance with the Constitution, advance constitutionality review, and safeguard the authority of the Constitution.

[11:04] Xi: The essence of the people’s democracy is that the people get to discuss their own affairs.

A coordinated approach will be adopted to promote consultations carried out by political parties, people’s congresses, government departments, Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) committees, people’s organizations, communities, and social organizations.

[11:03] Xi: We should not just mechanically copy the political systems of other countries.

The CPC stresses the unity of Party leadership, the people running the country, and law-based governance. Party leadership is the fundamental guarantee for ensuring that the people run the country and governance in China is law-based; that the people run the country is an essential feature of socialist democracy; and law-based governance is the basic way for the Party to lead the people in governing the country. The system of people’s congresses must be upheld and improved to ensure the people’s exercise of state power.

The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) opens at 9 a.m., Oct. 18, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. [Photo/Xinhua]
[10:53] Xi: China’s socialist democracy is the broadest, most genuine, and most effective democracy to safeguard the fundamental interests of the people. The very purpose of developing socialist democracy is to give full expression to the will of the people, protect their rights and interests, spark their creativity, and provide systemic and institutional guarantees to ensure the people run the country.

[10:51] Xi: Openness brings progress, while self-seclusion leaves one behind. China will not close its door to the world, and it will only become more and more open.

We will implement the system of pre-establishment national treatment plus a negative list across the board. China will significantly ease market access, further open service sectors, and protect the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors. All businesses registered in China will be treated equally.

[10:49] Xi: In the state-owned sector, we will step up improved distribution, structural adjustment, and strategic reorganization.

We will further reform of SOEs, develop mixed-ownership economic entities, and turn Chinese enterprises into world-class, globally competitive firms.

We will improve systems and mechanisms for stimulating consumer spending, and leverage the fundamental role of consumption in promoting economic growth.

Reform of the investment and financing systems will also be deepened to enable investment to play a crucial role in improving the supply structure.

We will improve the framework of regulation underpinned by monetary policy and macro-prudential policy, and see that interest rates and exchange rates become more market-based.

[10:41] Xi: Innovation is the primary force driving development, and it is the strategic underpinning for building a modernized economy.

We will strengthen basic research in applied sciences, launch major national science and technology projects, and prioritize innovation in key generic technologies, cutting-edge frontier technologies, modern engineering technologies, and disruptive technologies. These efforts will provide powerful support for building China’s strength in science and technology, product quality, aerospace, cyberspace, and transportation, and for building a digital China and a smart society.

We will cultivate a large number of world-class scientists and technologists in strategically important fields, scientific and technological leaders, and young scientists and engineers, as well as high-performing innovation teams.

[10:40] Xi: We will move Chinese industries up to the medium-high end of the global value chain, and foster a number of world-class advanced manufacturing clusters.

China will continue efforts to cut overcapacity, reduce excess inventory, deleverage, lower costs, and strengthen areas of weakness, and work to achieve a dynamic balance between supply and demand by improving the allocation of available resources and increasing high-quality supply.

[10:39] Xi called for more efforts to develop advanced manufacturing, promote further integration of the internet, big data, and artificial intelligence with the real economy, and foster new growth areas and drivers of growth in medium-high end consumption, innovation-driven development, the green and low-carbon economy, the sharing economy, modern supply chains, and human capital services.

[10:38] Xi: We should endeavor to develop an economy with more effective market mechanisms, dynamic micro-entities, and sound macro-regulation.

[10:37] Xi: China’s economy has been transitioning from a phase of rapid growth to a stage of high-quality development.

Stressing it is imperative that China develop a modernized economy, he described supply-side structural reform as the main task, and urged more efforts for better quality, higher efficiency, and more robust drivers of economic growth.

Xi called for raising total factor productivity and accelerating the building of an industrial system that promotes coordinated development of the real economy with technological innovation, modern finance, and human resources.

[10:34] Xi: In the second stage from 2035 to the middle of the 21st century, the CPC will, building on having basically achieved modernization, work hard for a further 15 years and develop China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful.

By then, new heights are reached in every dimension of material, political, cultural and ethical, social, and ecological advancement; modernization of China’s system and capacity for governance is achieved; China has become a global leader in terms of composite national strength and international influence; common prosperity for everyone is basically achieved; and the Chinese people enjoy happier, safer, and healthier lives. The Chinese nation will become a proud and active member of the community of nations.

[10:33] Xi: In the first stage from 2020 to 2035, we will build on the foundation created by the moderately prosperous society with a further 15 years of hard work to see that socialist modernization is basically realized.

[10:31] Xi: The CPC has drawn up a two-stage development plan for the period from 2020 to the middle of the century.

[10:28] Xi: After adopting the policy of reform and opening up, our Pary laid out three strategic goals for achieving socialist modernization in China. The first two – ensuring that people’s basic needs are met and that their lives are generally decent – have been accomplished ahead of time. Building on this, the Party then developed the vision that by the time the Party celebrates its centenary, the Chinese society will have been developed into a moderately prosperous one.

After this, with another 30 years of work, and by the time we celebrate the centenary of the People’s Republic of China, we will have besically achieved modernization and turned China into a modern socialist country.

The period between now and 2020 will be decisive in finishing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

[10:25] Xi: These 14-point fundamental principles underpin the endeavors to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.

[10:24] Xi: 14. Exercising full and rigorous governance over the Party.

[10:22] Xi: 13. Promoting the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

[10:21] Xi: 12. Upholding the principle of “one country, two systems” and promoting national reunification.

[10:20] Xi: 11. Upholding absolute Party leadership over the people’s forces.

[10:19] Xi: 10. Pursuing a holistic approach to national security.

[10:18] Xi: 9. Ensuring harmony between human and nature.

[10:16] Xi: 8. Ensuring and improving living standards through development.

[10:15] Xi: 7. Upholding core socialist values.

[10:14] Xi: 6. Ensuring every dimension of governance is law-based.

[10:12] Xi: 5. Seeing that the people run the country.

[10:11] Xi: 4. Adopting a new vision for development.

[10:10] Xi: 3. Continuing to comprehensively deepen reform.

[10:09] Xi: 2. Committing to a people-centered approach.

[10:08] Xi: 1. Ensuring Party leadership over all work.

[10:07] Xi: The Thought makes clear that the overarching goal of upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics is to realize socialist modernization and national rejuvenation.

On the basis of finishing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects, a two-step approach should be taken to build China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious and beautiful by the middle of the century.

It makes clear that the principal contradiction facing Chinese society in the new era is that between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people’s ever-growing needs for a better life. It stresses the people-centered philosophy of development, and well-rounded human development and common prosperity for everyone.

It makes clear that the overall plan for building socialism with Chinese characteristics is the five-sphere integrated plan, and the overall strategy is the four-pronged comprehensive strategy. It highlights the importance of fostering stronger confidence in the path, theory, system, and culture of socialism with Chinese characteristics.

It makes clear that the overall goal of deepening reform in every field is to improve and develop the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and modernize China’s system and capacity for governance.

It makes clear that the overall goal of comprehensively advancing law-based governance is to establish a system of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics and build a country of socialist rule of law.

It makes clear that the Party’s goal of building a strong military in the new era is to build the people’s forces into world-class forces that obey the Party’s command, can fight and win, and maintain excellent conduct.

It makes clear that major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics aims to foster a new type of international relations and build a community with a shared future for mankind.

It makes clear that the CPC leadership is defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the greatest strength of the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics; the Party is the highest force for political leadership. The Thought sets forth the general requirements for Party building in the new era and underlines the importance of political work in Party building.

The Thought builds on and further enriches Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Theory of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development. It represents the latest achievement in adapting Marxism to the Chinese context.

[10:04] Xi: The Party has been guided by Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Theory of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development. The CPC has adopted an entirely new perspective to deepen its understanding of the laws that underlie governance by the Communist Party, the development of socialism, and the evolution of human society. The Party has undertaken theoretical explorations and achieved major theoretical innovations, ultimately giving shape to the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era.

[09:59] Xi: We must keep on strengthening the Party’s ability to lead politically, to guide through theory, to organize the people, and to inspire society, thus ensuring that the Party’s great vitality and strong ability are forever maintained.

[09:58] Xi: Without the leadership of the Communist Party of China, national rejuvenation would just be “wishful thinking.”

[09:57] Xi: Realizing our great dream demands a great struggle.

All thinking and behavior in the vein of pleasure seeking, inaction and sloth, and problem avoidance are unacceptable.

Every Party member has to do more to uphold Party leadership and the Chinese socialist system, and resolutely oppose all statements and actions that undermine, distort, or refute them.

All Party members have to do more to safeguard China’s sovereignty, security, and development interests, and staunchly oppose all attempts to split China or undermine its ethnic unity, social harmony and stability.

[09:54] Xi: Today, we are closer, more confident, and more capable than ever before of making the goal of national rejuvenation a reality.

The last leg of a journey just marks the halfway point. Achieving national rejuvenation will be no walk in the park, and it will take more than drum beating and gong clanging to get there. Every Party member must be prepared to work even harder toward this goal.

[09:44] Xi: The evolution of the principal contradiction represents a historic shift that affects the whole landscape and that creates many new demands for the work of the Party and the country.

[09:43] Xi: The principal contradiction facing Chinese society has evolved, as socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era. What we now face is the contradiction between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people’s ever-growing needs for a better life. China has seen the basic needs of over a billion people met, has basically made it possible for people to live decent lives, and will soon bring the building of a moderately prosperous society to a successful completion. The needs to be met for the people to live a better life are increasingly broad. Not only have their material and cultural needs grown; their demands for democracy, rule of law, fairness and justice, security, and a better environment are increasing. While China’s overall productive forces have significantly improved and in many areas our production capacity leads the world, our problem is that our development is unbalanced and inadequate. This has become the main constraining factor in meeting the people’s increasing needs for a better life.

[09:39] Xi: Socialism with Chinese characteristics entering a new era means that scientific socialism is full of vitality in 21st century China, and that the banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics is now flying high and proud for all to see.

It means that the path, the theory, the system, and the culture of socialism with Chinese characteristics have kept developing, blazing a new trail for other developing countries to achieve modernization. It offers a new option for other countries and nations who want to speed up their development while preserving their independence; and it offers Chinese wisdom and a Chinese approach to solving the problems facing mankind.

[09:36] Xi attributed the achievements to “the strong leadership of the Party Central Committee, and, more importantly, the result of all Party members and all the Chinese people pulling together in their pursuit.”

The Communist Party of China (CPC) opens the 19th National Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 18, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]
[09:21] Xi: More than 60 million people have been lifted out of poverty over the past five years.

[09:15] Xi: The economy has maintained a medium-high growth rate, making China a leader among the major economies. China’s GDP rose from 54 trillion yuan to 80 trillion yuan (about US$12.1 trillion) over the past five years. China has maintained its position as the world’s second largest economy and contributed more than 30 percent of global economic growth.

The economic structure has been steadily improved as the supply-side structural reform has made further headway.

The five years also saw agricultural modernization steadily advance, with annual grain production reaching 600 million metric tons. The level of urbanization has risen by an annual average of 1.2 percentage points, and more than 80 million people who have moved from rural to urban areas have gained permanent urban residency.

The new institutions of the open economy have been steadily improved. China now leads the world in trade, outbound investment, and foreign exchange reserves.

[09:11] Xi: Historic shifts have been made in the cause of the Communist Party of China and the country in the past five years.

[09:10] Xi: China is still in an important period of strategic opportunity for development. The prospects are bright but the challenges are severe.

We will unite the Chinese people of all ethnic groups and lead them to a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and in the drive to secure the success of socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era.

[09:09] Xi: The theme of the Congress is to “remain true to our original aspiration and keep our mission firmly in mind, hold high the banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics, secure a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, strive for the great success of socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era, and work tirelessly to realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation.”

The original aspiration and the mission of Chinese Communists are to seek happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation.

[09:08] Xi: This is a meeting of great importance taking place during the decisive stage in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and at a critical moment as socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era.

[09:06] Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, begins to deliver a report to the Congress.

[09:03] The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) opens at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The meeting is presided over by Li Keqiang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee.

[07:48]  Tuo Zhen, spokesman for the congress, told a press conference on Oct. 17 that the agenda includes:

— To hear and examine a report submitted by the 18th CPC Central Committee;

— To examine a work report of the 18th Central Commission for Discipline Inspection;

— To deliberate and adopt an amendment to the Party’s Constitution;

— To elect the Party’s 19th Central Committee and its 19th Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

[07:46, Oct. 18] The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China will open at 9:00 a.m. at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.


[15:26, Oct. 17]   Transcript: SCIO briefing on agriculture and rural development

[15:25] Backgrounder: CPC — world’s largest ruling party

[15:24] Backgrounder: Themes of major CPC national congresses

[15:23]  Transcript: SCIO briefing on China’s poverty reduction progress

[15:11]    Infographic: China’s socio-economic achievements over the past 5 years

[15:08]  Video: How are the delegates to the CPC National Congress elected?

[15:07]  A total of 2,287 delegates have been elected to attend the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in Beijing.

Delegates of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) arrive at Capital International Airport in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 15, 2017. The congress will start on Oct. 18. [Photo/Xinhua]

[15:06] It was decided that three documents will be submitted to the upcoming congress for examination and deliberation.

[15:05]  Video: How is the report to the CPC National Congress produced?

[15:04] A report to be made by the 18th CPC Central Committee to the 19th CPC National Congress, a work report of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) to the congress, as well as an amendment to the CPC Constitution were discussed and approved.

The Seventh Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was convened Oct. 11-14, 2017 in Beijing.[Photo/Xinhua]
[15:03] The Seventh Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was convened Oct. 11-14, 2017 in Beijing. Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, delivered an important speech at the plenum.

[15:00, Oct. 17] The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) is scheduled to open at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, the media center of the congress announced Monday.