BEIJING.— When Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels published the first edition of the Communist Manifesto in 1848, they most likely didn’t imagine that 72 years later the “spectre of Communism” would reach China and transform this nation into a world power.
Just a year after the circulation of this influential political treatise in the Asian giant, on June 30, 1921, the Communist Party of China (CPC) was founded; an organization that now guides its people in building a better country.
Over the next 96 years, the CPC overthrew imperialism, feudalism, capitalism, and in 1949 founded the new China, which is now on its way to becoming the leading global economy.
“The arduous path has marked our success. The key to the present is always in the past, the root of the present lies in history,” Professor Mei Renyi, president of China’s Intercultural Research Institute, told reporters gathered at the China-Latin America and the Caribbean Press Center (CLACPC).
Almost a century after its founding, and having lifted more than 700 million people out of poverty and achieved impressive development thanks to the application of the Reform and Opening-Up Policy, this political institution maintains practically the same bases and objectives of its founding years, while assuming new challenges, in accordance with the current reality, in leading the nation along the path of the construction of socialism with Chinese characteristics.
Although in its beginnings the CPC was a marginalized force, today, with some 88 million members, it is the vanguard of the Chinese people and the nation in general.
Yet many wonder how this political organization has achieved such an undertaking, a question that for Professor Mei is very clear. “In the 1920s, China was a purely agricultural country; the key was in the countryside and nobody paid attention to that area. But the Communist Party established its bases in the country, which provided an incredible force. The people are the greatest force of the CPC,” he emphasized.
According to Mei, also director of the Foreign Literature Research Institute at the Beijing Foreign Studies University, “When Mao Tse-tung entered Beijing in 1949 he faced the great challenge of governing the nation and continuing to respond to the founding principles of the Party, which were to represent the people. Taking power was a test for the Party to continue to respond to the people.”
Despite the changes and the new times, Chinese leaders today have the same mission, and the main objective of the current executive, Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC, is to adjust the pace and development model to continue on the path of prosperity, while strengthening the intense campaign against corruption at the highest levels of government and the Party.
These aspirations will receive new impetus during the celebration of the 19th CPC National Congress, scheduled for the second half of 2017. Both inside and outside China, one of the most important political events of the year is eagerly awaited, in which the future of the most populous nation in the world will be debated.
“The new paths chosen must serve the people, depend on the people, and it is the people who must enjoy the achievements,” stated Mei, adding that the Chinese model must have guidelines and a theoretical basis that respond to realities, as well as ensuring the continuity of its policies. “China would not be able to withstand the fluctuations of short term policy,” he noted.
Jin Canrong, vice president and chair of the International Relations Department at Renmin University, who also spoke with reporters, believes that “China’s economic development is the occurrence of the last 50 years,” an achievement that many attribute to the guidance of the Party and its leaders.
According to Canrong, due to its economic progress, within 30 years the Asian giant will experience comprehensive growth and its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will surpass the total volume of the Western world.
“One of our greatest achievements is industrialization,” he noted, arguing that in the future other countries “will surpass us in terms of population, but not industrialization.”
“Soon China will become an integral power,” the two academics agreed, and this new victory, as in the last 80 years, will be achieved under the leadership of the Communist Party of China.