| Global Times | 2012-7-2 2:20:03
By Yan Shuang
The Communist Party of China (CPC) had 82.6 million members by the end of 2011, a 2.9 percent increase from a year earlier, according to the latest official statistics.
CPC members are getting younger and better-educated, analysts said on Sunday as the Party celebrated its 91st founding anniversary.
Among its members, 38.6 percent received education in a junior college or above, and 25 percent are aged below 35, while 23.3 percent are women, and 6.7 percent are from ethnic minority backgrounds, according to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee, the Xinhua News Agency reported Saturday.
Students and government employees are two major contributors to the rise in the number of Party members in China, said Lin Zhe, a professor at the Party School of the Central Committee of the CPC.
"Most colleges and universities encourage students to apply for Party membership while the reasons for more students joining the Party vary. Some do have a strong belief and take pride in the Party, but some others join out of personal concerns, hoping that membership can give them leverage in the job market," Lin told the Global Times.
There are a total of 2.7 million student Party members among the total number, according to the official figure. While a large number of well-educated young people are joining the Party.
People from different professions, especially workers and people with privately-owned enterprises, show a stronger will to join than before, Lin said.
"Party members are playing a leading role in all walks of life. Many of them have been proven to be good examples among the public, and they have the ability to call on public support in major events, such as relief efforts during disasters," said Lin, adding that more foreign-invested corporations are seeing the positive influence brought by employees who are Party members and many foreign companies in China have set up their own Party branches.
The number of CPC grass-roots organizations totaled 4.02 million by 2011, a 3.5 percent increase over 2010, according to the report.
Party organizations have covered almost all publicly-owned enterprises and public service units, official data shows, and 983,000 non-public-owned enterprises and more than 200,000 social groups had established their own CPC branches by 2011.
Some 44 percent of non-public-owned enterprises in Beijing, including foreign-invested and privately owned companies, had established their own CPC branches by 2012, a drastic increase over the number in 2006, which is 5.26 percent, according to a China News Service report.
"Corruption is a major problem in Party building and has eroded public confidence in the CPC," Lin said.
A new trend has emerged of corruption cases among CPC members this year, Lin said, as some Party officials make policies or rules that only benefit themselves and not ordinary residents.
"Some disqualified Party members are taking profits and benefits from the public that they should not be sharing, and they avoid difficulties and don't care about the grass-roots," Lin said.
"The Party members should be more responsible and concerned for public interests."
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