As a Chinese journalist working in Africa for nearly 10 years, I have been to almost half of the 54 African countries. Some of my African friends ask me the same question from time to time: Why can China create unbelievable economic and social development miracles within a few decades? I tell them from my heart that the “secret” is not complicated. In a nutshell, the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) is a key decisive factor to achieving China’s miracles.
As a long-term observer for international affairs, I also want to say, the 20th CPC National Congress, opened on October 16, will clarify China’s future development path of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the Chinese-style modernization, and allow the world’s second largest economy to make more headway in different areas, including its unique socialist democratic system.
Why do I think like this?
Under the leadership of the CPC, China has transformed itself from standing up and growing prosperous to becoming strong.
The CPC was founded in 1921, when China was in utter disorder, impoverished and weak, and the Chinese people were living in dire straits. The party was aimed at helping change China’s destiny, seeking happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenating the Chinese nation.
My late father was born in the 1930s.He often told me when I was a child that China was totally poor and backward at his prime time, and that the country with a long history and splendid civilization even suffered from Japanese imperialist aggression for 14 years.
After several decades of hard struggle and sacrifice, the CPC led the Chinese people to establish the People’s Republic of China in 1949, enabling the Chinese nation to stand up as an independent nation and to take on a new look step by step ever since.
China’s per capita GDP was far lower than the world average when I was a teenager. I was deeply attracted by the modernity of developed nations after I saw some movies of the US, Japan and other countries. I dreamed that China would also realize modernization in the future.
Since 1978, the CPC has led the Chinese people onto the path of reform and opening up, a right road of realising rejuvenation of China. Just in a few decades, China has completed a process of industrialization that took developed countries hundreds of years, and created two miracles: rapid economic development and long-term social stability. China has been growing prosperous, being the world’s second largest economy today. My boyhood vision of modernization is now a dream come true.
The past 10 years has seen China’s progress by leaps and bounds.
For China, the past decade has been an epic journey since the 18th CPC National Congress convened in 2012, when Xi Jinping was elected as the General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee. Under the leadership of the CPC, landmark projects and historic breakthroughs have taken place in China.
Here are more statistics to illustrate the type of development China has witnessed over the past decade. The following is seen within each minute in China: a ‘Fuxing’ high-speed train can travel 5833 meters; 12.7 hectares of forest or grass are planted; 10 new energy vehicles are produced; 287,700 mobile payments are made totaling over RMB 1 billion; 32,000 bike sharing orders are placed; 206,000 parcels are sent or received; 31.25 million messages are sent via Wechat; takeout orders worth USD 266,000 are completed on food delivery platforms; 481 meters of highways and roads are built or reconstructed in rural areas.
In terms of collaboration between China and the world, these things are happening within each minute: the BeiDou Navigation System is accessed over 70 million times by users in more than 200 countries and regions; the China-Europe Railway Express delivers 3TEUs of goods; 30 passengers & 7 TEUs of cargo reach destination by the Chinese company constructed Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway in Kenya; China’s import and export with the Belt&Road Initiative (BRI), partner countries reach USD 3 and half million; A Chinese-built water supply project in Cabinda, Angola supplies 35 cubic meters of water, benefiting 600,000 local people.
Over the past decade, the Chinese economy has sustained rapid growth and cemented its global status as a major growth contributor; China has put innovation high on its agenda to boost competitiveness and invigorate the economy. From 2012 to 2021, China’s GDP grew from 53.9 trillion yuan (about 7.58 trillion U.S. dollars) to 114.4 trillion yuan (about 17.77 trillion U.S. dollars), and its per capita GDP jumped to over 12,000 U.S. dollars from 6,300 dollars, China’s contribution to global economic growth exceeded 30 percent in the same period.
China has made great strides in different spheres from space exploration, scientific and technological innovation to infrastructure construction; China’s elimination of extreme poverty has been one of the highlights of the country’s remarkable development. China had lifted all of its 98.99 million impoverished rural residents out of poverty by the end of 2020.
Under the leadership of the CPC, China is going to an indigenous way to achieve modernization, to navigate the nation’s economy toward a fairer, more innovative growth, and commit to goals of protecting world peace and advancing common development.
I have been following the five-yearly Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress since 1992, because it plays a guiding role in the development of China’s politics, economy, society and other undertakings.
The 20th CPC National Congress convened on October 16 to 22 in Beijing is a congress of great significance after China has accomplished its first centenary goal of building ‘Xiaokang’, a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2021 , and to start the second centenary goal of building a modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious by 2049.
At the opening of the 20th CPC National Congress, Xi Jinping delivered a comprehensive report in the presence of over 2,000 delegates representing over 96 million CPC members nationwide.
Xi’s report is very impressive to me. He said that Chinese modernization, pursued under the CPC leadership, is the modernization of a huge population, of common prosperity for all, of material and cultural-ethical advancement, of harmony between humanity and nature and of peaceful development. He stressed that the whole-process of people’s democracy is the defining feature of socialist democracy; it is democracy in its broadest, most genuine, and most effective form.
I also noticed that China’s commitment to its foreign policy goals of protecting world peace and advancing common development is also reaffirmed in Xi’s report, providing greater reassurance to the international community. China continues to steadfastly pursue an independent foreign policy of peace, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, as without peace and harmony all other development initiatives will be futile. There is no doubt that this is also the guiding ideology for China to develop relations with African countries.
Xinjun is a Chinese journalist and international affairs observer based in Nigeria.