Hopes and impact of 20th CPC National Congress
Editor's Note: The author is Yasir Habib Khan, President of the Institute of International Relations and Media Research (IIRMR).
The world seeks out hopes from the 20th CPC National Congress because what is to be hashed out and laid down as blueprints for the future of China will leave a lasting imprint on the world’s geopolitical, geo-economic, and geostrategic landscapes.
As time draws closer to the convening of the 20th CPC National Congress on October 16, the global audience especially international influencers has been keeping a tab on phase-wise developments even before the announcement of the event.
In the face of deep-rooted challenges relating to economic recession, inflation, climate change, politicization, protectionism, global disharmony, terrorism, war, food security and prejudices of superpowers, people of the world need a beacon of light to forge ahead.
Leaving aside a few that are hell-bent to hold their hegemony with a Zero-sum narrative, the rest of the world is looking toward someone to lead. Someone that works with them as a team. Someone that believes in partnership with the philosophy of co-existence, harmony, peace and a win-win development model for all.
The 20th CPC National Congress is occurring at a specific time when the US midterm elections are about to be held next month. What results come out will set the direction of American’s relations with China. Russia-Ukraine War is also going berserk fueled by International players, especially NATO. Afghanistan issue is further in limbo. 10 days before the 20th CPC National Congress, the UN Human Rights Council rejected a Western-led motion to hold a debate on China's alleged human rights violations in Xinjiang as nineteen countries voted against the motion, 17 voted in favor, and 11 abstained. It's only the second time in the U.N. body's 16-year history that a motion has been defeated.
Besides all it is fortunate that the world attaches hopes to China, having observed the past five years of China’s epic development implemented by the 19th CPC National Congress that has created global positive ripples in the length and breadth of the world.
During the 13th Five-Year Plan period under stewardship of CPC from 2016 to 2020, China made great strides in improving the economy, people's livelihood and other fields. China has contributed over 30 percent to global economic growth, with GDP hitting almost 100 trillion yuan ($14.9 trillion). Over 50 million people have been relieved from poverty, and 53.78 million new urban jobs have been created. New standard bearers in technology emerged, including high-speed trains, the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System and domestic passenger aircraft C919. This rapid technological development can be attributed to investment in research and development, which totaled 2.17 trillion yuan in 2019, accounting for 2.19 percent of GDP and up 56.3 percent from 2015. The world had to admire China for becoming the largest number of companies on the world's top 500 companies list published by Fortune Magazine.
The 20th CPC National Congress is going to shed light on the 14th five-year plan (FYP) covering the years 2021 to 2025, officially endorsed by the National People’s Congress (NPC) on 11 March 2021. The Plan is divided into 19 sections and 65 chapters, touching on all aspects of development over the next five years, as well as showcasing China’s 2035 vision.
Experts believe that the 20th CPC National Congress will focus on the "dual-circulation" Plan which is very significant for the world economy. It is going to put far-reaching results on the international economy. Some have interpreted this to mean that Beijing is turning its back on the outside world, but that's not what the plan says. It says policies should help unleash the full potential of the domestic market, facilitating firms to provide higher-quality goods and services to better stimulate domestic demand. And at the same time, Beijing promised greater access to foreign investors and encouraged Chinese companies to trade more with the outside world. Beijing wants this round of opening-up "to be on a greater scale, across more sectors and on a deeper level."
The second key point to be looked into during the 20th CPC National Congress is "innovation," mentioned 47 times in the final 14th Five Year Plan. The new plan really puts innovation at the heart of China's future plans. Beijing says it will strive to make major breakthroughs in core technologies in key areas and become a global leader in innovation. Many predict there will be more of a policy push for higher spending in the coming years in emerging sectors, such as biotechnology, semiconductors and new energy vehicles.
Another area of focus is green growth. There are no rigid GDP targets for the next five years and instead "green growth" has been pinpointed 19 times, a sign that Beijing continues to encourage local officials to look beyond GDP as a key performance indicator and instead focus on low-carbon and sustainable growth models.
CPC set two centenary goals: The first was to build a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2021 when CPC celebrated its centenary. Among second centenary goals, main point is to build China into a great modern socialist country in all respects by the middle of the century to celebrate the centenary of the People's Republic of China. The 20th CPC National Congress will be a very important event taking place at a crucial moment, with China embarking on a new journey to fully build a modern socialist country.