Strategic blueprint for China promoted

By Catherine Wong Tsoi-lai Source:Global Times Published: 2015-2-26 0:53:01

Xi’s ‘Four Comprehensives’ interpreted

China's State-run media on Wednesday published for the first time an "authoritative interpretation" of Chinese President Xi Jinping's "Four Comprehensives" political theory that is set to "guide the overall strategies of China's national rejuvenation."

Political analysts believe that the promotion of the "Four Comprehensives" is a signal that Xi has formulated his fundamental political principles following the tradition of previous Party leaders. They also said that the theory offers an insight into Xi's vision of how China should be governed in the midst of deepening reforms and an adjusting economy. 

The People's Daily, the Communist Party of China's (CPC) flagship newspaper, published a rare 2,000-word editorial on its Wednesday front page detailing the explanation of the "Four Comprehensives," a theory first mentioned by Xi last December during a visit to Jiangsu Province.

Various major Chinese media outlets have republished the interpretation including the Xinhua News Agency, China Central Television (CCTV) and various provincial Party newspapers.

"Each of the four initiatives has its historical origins in line with the ideals set out by China's previous leaders. But Xi was the first one to group these four sets of concepts and take them to a new level of overall national strategy," Xu Yaotong, a professor with the Chinese Academy of Governance, told the Global Times.

The "Four Comprehensives" include comprehensively building a moderately prosperous society, deepening reform, advancing the rule of law and strictly strengthening Party discipline.

Xi's governing philosophy follows a tradition among CPC leaders who have put forward political theories during their tenure to meet the needs of the nation's development.

In 2000, Jiang Zemin presented his theory of the "Three Represents" as the basis of his administration. Hu Jintao in 2003 unveiled his own concept of the "Scientific Outlook on Development."

"While economic progress remains the top priority of the continuing economic reforms, Xi has put more emphasis on political reform in the 'Four Comprehensives' theory," Wang Zhanyang, a professor with the Central Institute of Socialism, told the Global Times.

The other three "comprehensives" are ways to achieve the goal of "building a moderately prosperous society comprehensively," said Wang.

Xi's emphasis on "comprehensiveness" implies a specific emphasis on achieving social equality, said Xu.

"The 30 plus years of economic reform have left some in Chinese society living a more well-off life. But the wealth gap between the rich and the poor persists, and we need to distribute wealth evenly covering all in society," Xu said.

Since taking office in 2012, Xi has engineered a series of sweeping reform policies, including the ongoing anti-corruption crackdown and a drive to promote the rule of law. 

The Chinese economy has also faced the new challenges of entering into a "new normal," with its GDP growth shifting from high speed to medium-to-high speed.

The article quoted Xi as saying that the "Four Comprehensives" are China's fundamental State policy to solve the problems and conflicts faced by the nation, and to meet the "keen expectations of the Chinese public."

Cai Zhiqiang, a professor of Party building with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, told the Global Times that the "Four Comprehensives" are the culmination of China's past 35 years of reform and a new solution to solve the deep-rooted problems faced by the Chinese economy.

"China's reform policies have been fragmented and require a more comprehensive and systematic framework," said Cai.

Xu and Wang also said the "Four Comprehensives" are derived from the two years of experience accumulated by the Xi administration.

Building a "moderately prosperous society" was a term first used by late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in 1979 as the eventual goal of China's modernization.

Deng also developed the "reform and opening-up policy" which since the 1970s has been China's key policy in its efforts to achieve modernization.

The concept of "the rule of law" promoted by Xi, according to Xu Yaotong, is also a concept inherited from Deng's emphasis on a democratic and stable political system.

China is currently five years away from its deadline of "building a moderately prosperous society" by 2020, a goal set out by former Chinese President Hu Jintao in 2012 to further Deng's vision.

The article comes ahead of the upcoming "Two Sessions," China's annual meetings for the national advisory body and legislature that will take place in early March, when Party members and officials meet to discuss national policies.

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