“National Peace and Order” Is the Most Important Public Good

From: English Edition of Qiushi Journal Updated: 2013-08-20 14:41
text size: T | T

“National Peace and Order” Is the Most Important Public Good

Hu Angang

The sustained development and success of a country depends on a number of factors, but none are more important than political factors. Peace and harmony have been the aspirations of the Chinese people since ancient times. Only in ages of order are the people able to live and work in peace and contentment, and only then can the country thrive and prosper. For China, national peace and order represents the most important public good there is. This is because national peace and order can ensure the realization of sustained and rapid economic growth over the long term, thereby giving rise to a developed modern country. Rather than saying that economic development and social progress are functions of the time a country spends modernizing, it would be better to say that they are functions of how long that country is able to enjoy national peace and order. Starting from the launch of the reform and opening up drive, China has enjoyed more than 30 years of national peace and order so far. During this period, the GDP per capita has grown at an average rate of 8.8% per year. If China is able to keep on growing for another 30 years, or even longer, it will become a high-income country and one of the world’s most developed societies. Therefore, when it comes to China’s development, the important thing is not the pace of economic growth, but the duration of national peace and order. In this sense, the former is the effect, while the latter is the cause. National peace and order is in the fundamental interests of the people as a whole. The interests of the individual must be subordinate to the interests of the whole, and the minor principles of the individual must be subordinate to the major principles of the state. With a population of more than one billion, China is an interest community bound together by a common destiny. If one prospers, we all prosper; but if one suffers, we all suffer. So, who is the provider of public goods in China? The answer is the CPC and the Chinese government. The provision of public goods constitutes one of their main responsibilities and major tasks. The effective provision of national peace and order, the most important public good, by the CPC and the Chinese government is the reason why China has been able to achieve such rapid development. The provision of this public good will bring common prosperity for 1.3 billion people, and allow them to realize the “Chinese Dream” of great rejuvenation together.

(Originally appeared in People’s Daily, March 6, 2013)

The Secret Behind the Eruption of China’s Stre-ngth

Yao Huan

Why has China been consistently successful in breaking through development bottlenecks? What is the secret behind the eruption of China’s strength? The reason can be found in the superiority of socialism with Chinese characteristics. China’s socialist market economy has not only given full play to the fundamental role of the market in the allocation of resources, encouraging enthusiasm and creativity through the introduction of economic interests, but has also given play to the authority of the socialist state, allowing for the negative effects of the market to be limited and reduced through effective macro-economic regulation, and for a sound equilibrium to be maintained between efficiency and fairness, and between drive and balance. China’s political system brings together the leadership of the Communist Party, the position of the people as masters of their own country, and the rule of law. Maintaining a balance between the development of democracy and the preservation of social stability, China’s political system has gradually promoted democracy via the integration of electoral democracy with consultative democracy. This allows for the orderly participation of citizens, and means that the position of the people as the principal actors in national affairs can be realized in practice, thereby preventing the occurrence of “chaotic democracy.” China’s political and economic systems allow it to concentrate resources and exert the advantages of a socialist country in pooling energies behind major undertakings. This forms the basis for effective responses to complex international situations and fierce international competition. As an advanced political party, the CPC has continued to represent the interests of the people during its long period of time in power. Putting the long-term fundamental interests of the people first, the CPC has set out long-term development targets for the country. At the same time, on the basis of prioritizing long-term interests and the interests of the whole, it has addressed specific conflicts of interest, safeguarded the livelihood of the people, and realized social harmony and stability. The organizations of the Communist Party of China can be found in basic organizations throughout the entire country. Party members, playing the role of vanguards and role models, maintain close links with the public and enjoy their support. In addition, the Party also has a strong capacity to mobilize public support. China’s political situation has remained stable for a considerable period of time. The high level of prestige that the Party and government enjoy makes it possible for the continuity of Party policies and national policies to be maintained. These superiorities have enabled China to achieve reform, development, and stability at the same time. They allow it to properly handle and resolve social problems, timely and effectively cope with emergencies and natural disasters, and adopt powerful measures to counter the suppression of hostile Western forces. These superiorities are hard to come by in other systems.

(Originally appeared in People’s Daily Online, January 29, 2013)

How Has the Chinese Path Avoided the Drawbacks of the Western Development Model?

Han Baojiang

The Chinese path of development differs entirely from the path that the developed countries of the West have followed. Firstly, the Chinese path is one of scientific development. This path strives to realize a scientific form of development that is comprehensive, coordinated, sustainable, and people-oriented. Opposing extensive forms of development that plunder resources and damage environments with their expansion tendencies, the Chinese path advocates resource conservation, environmental friendliness, and development that can be sustained permanently. Secondly, the Chinese path is one of reform and opening up. This path integrates the spirit of reforms and innovation in every aspect of national governance. Being opposed to arrogance and closed-mindedness, this path is about being adept at learning, having the courage to integrate, and showing reverence for the common achievements of human civilization. Thirdly, the Chinese path is one of fairness and justice. Dedicated to ensuring equal rights, equal opportunities, and equal rules through the provision of social assurances, the Chinese path strives to create a fair social environment under which all people have the right to participate and develop as equals. At the same time, this path advocates the equality of every person before the law, and is staunchly opposed to special privileges and the notion that the strong feed off the weak. Fourthly, the Chinese path is one of harmonious development. Placing the assurance and improvement of public wellbeing in a more prominent position, this path seeks to maximize factors conducive to harmony and boost social creativity. Being opposed to violence and social division, it is a path that advocates unity, cooperation, and values identification. Fifthly, the Chinese path is one of common prosperity. Believing that the fruits of development should benefit all of the people in a greater and more equitable way, this path is opposed to the greed of capital, freeloading, and polarization. Sixthly, the Chinese path is one of peaceful development. This path is committed to development through opening up, development via cooperation, and development that is of mutual benefit to all. On this basis, China not only seeks to develop itself by securing a peaceful international environment, but also strives to uphold and promote world peace through its own development. By expanding the convergence of interests between different parties, this path promotes the building of a harmonious world with lasting peace and common prosperity. Moreover, this path is opposed to international hegemonism and the bullying of the disadvantaged, instead advocating equality, mutual benefit, and peaceful co-existence.

(Originally appeared in Outlook, No.9, 2013)

China Cannot Possibly Copy the Western Approach to Modernization

Wen Tiejun

There are several reasons why China cannot copy the Western model. First, there is no precedent for the success of the Western approach to modernization in any large developing country with a population in excess of one hundred million. In the past it was generally believed that during the transition from a resource-based economy to a capitalist economy, the West mainly benefited from privatization, marketization, liberalization, and globalization. Under the influence of this idea, many people believed that the resolution of problems in developing countries would require breakthroughs in privatization, marketization, liberalization, and globalization. But what we see in Mexico, Brazil, India, and Indonesia is just the opposite. Mexico has a population of about 130 million. Brazil has a population of just 190 million. These countries, all of which have embarked on the Western path to modernization, have gone much farther than China with regard to privatization, liberalization, and marketization. Moreover, compared to China, they do indeed have more “modernized” systems. However, it must be noted that there are three major gaps which these societies have failed to fundamentally address: the income gap, the urban-rural gap, and the regional gap. Not only have these countries failed to complete their modernization and become developed countries, the economic and social problems that they have encountered in certain regards are even more complex and acute than those in China. The difficulties experienced by many countries offer proof that the Western approach to modernization cannot simply be copied, and that it is by no means universal. The second reason the Western model cannot be copied is due to a lack of the necessary preconditions. Looking back at how the major Western countries modernized, we may see that the Western approach to modernization was a centuries-long process that saw the formation and expansion of capital by means of colonization. Therefore, when we discuss the question of China’s development, and especially when we propose learning from Western countries, we need give serious thought to the matter of whether the experience of “modernization” in the context of Western discourse does in fact constitute an objective explanation that accords to scientific principles. By scientific, we mean the ability of a certain practice to be replicated under constant conditions. That being the case, is it possible for this Western experience, which is strongly characteristic of colonialism, to be emulated by late-developing countries? If having different conditions means that something cannot be replicated, how can late-developing countries and countries that are pursuing industrialization copy this approach directly?

(Originally appeared in Jiefang Daily, February 27, 2013)

Five Major Opportunities for China’s Economic Development

Zheng Xinli

The global economic crisis triggered by the financial crisis in the United States has dealt a heavy blow to developed countries. It will be a number of years before these countries are able to fully emerge from the crisis. China has also been affected by the international financial crisis. But despite this, however, it also faces several rare opportunities. First, the opportunity to expand domestic demand. The capacity of developed countries to accommodate export commodities from China has been weakened. To a certain extent, the resulting trade friction has constrained the growth of China’s exports. On the flipside, however, this is actually an opportunity that China can use to boost domestic demand. Second, the opportunity to improve the livelihood of the people. At present, the consumer demand of China’s residents has dropped to 34%, and the rate of investment has exceeded the final consumption rate to become the highest that it has ever been. Therefore, now is a good time to boost domestic demand and improve the livelihood of the people. Third, an opportunity for industrial upgrading. At present, China is coming under enormous pressure to sustain the growth of its exports. By drawing on this pressure, we will be able to urge greater investment in innovation, increase the number of products with independent intellectual property rights and independent brands, and thereby drive the upgrading of China’s industries. Therefore, this is also a rare opportunity. Fourth, the opportunity for international mergers and acquisitions. By engaging in more international mergers and acquisitions, we will be able to raise the capacity of Chinese enterprises to innovate and operate globally, secure rights to prospect and develop energy resources overseas, and expand the export of labor to foreign countries. Fifth, an opportunity for the internationalization of the Renminbi. The financial crisis has seen the US Dollar run into trouble. This is an opportunity that China can seize upon. By increasing the circulation of the Renminbi abroad, China will be able to promote the marketization of Renminbi interest rates and tax rates, promote the relaxation of Renminbi capital account convertibility, expand the scale of bilateral Renminbi exchanges, and encourage countries that are willing to accept Renminbi to make overseas investments, and speed up Shanghai’s development as an international financial center.

(Originally appeared in Economic Daily, January 11, 2013)

China Still Has the Potential for Sustained High Growth

Lin Yifu

China’s potential and capacity for economic growth are considerable. As a developing country, China has a large capacity for industrial upgrading, with many investment projects bringing in high returns. As a medium-level developing country, China also has a huge capacity for urbanization and the development of infrastructure. This is especially the case for infrastructure in large cities. Moreover, the rectification of environments and social projects both require investment, and these investments promise very high returns. In addition to having good investment opportunities, China’s fiscal standing is also very strong. The total government debt plus local investment loans over the past four years amount to only a little over 40% of the GDP. Compared to most countries, China’s fiscal standing is very good. Therefore, this has provided the government with favorable conditions for pursuing a proactive fiscal policy. In addition to the government having money, public savings in China are also very high. Then there is China’s three trillion US dollars in foreign reserves, which ensures sufficient investment funds for machinery, equipment, or raw materials when the country needs them. Therefore, relying on these favorable conditions, there should be little doubt that China can continue to maintain 8% economic growth over the next few years. Moreover, China could potentially maintain 8% growth for another 20 years.

(Originally appeared in Social Outlook, No.12, 2012)

China Is a Positive Contributor to the World

Zhang Jian

As the countries of the world become increasingly inclined to focus on their own internal affairs, China is still maintaining an outward outlook and contributing positively to the world. Firstly, China has provided a source of impetus for global development. According to the World Bank, China’s contribution rate to the growth of the world’s GDP reached 4.6% in 2003, and rose to 14.5% in 2009. Secondly, China has presented its own proposal for global governance, playing a positive and constructive role in the handling of international and regional affairs. For instance, it has advanced the “six-point proposal” and “four-point plan” for the political resolution of the Syria issue, and advanced proposals such as a “three-step roadmap” for talks on the Iran nuclear issue. These initiatives have not only been met with a positive response from the international community, but have also played an important role in bringing about a solution to these problems. Thirdly, China has offered a set of standards for the reform of the international system. Since the beginning of the reform and opening up drive, China has advocated the appropriate adjustment of the existing mechanism for global governance on the basis of adherence to current rules. In doing so, it has taken active part in the implementation of the international system. This has not only deepened interdependence between China and the outside world, but has also promoted China’s own development and transformation. Fourthly, China has presented its own wisdom with regard to the establishment of relations between countries. During more than 10 years of rapid development, China has moved away from the fringes of the international system, gradually becoming a contributor and builder of this system. Through its in-depth and comprehensive participation in international affairs, China has become a practitioner of peaceful development, a promoter of common development, a guardian of the multilateral trade system, and a participator in global economic governance.

(Originally appeared in Jiefang Daily, March 6, 2013)

Qiushi Journal | English Edition of Qiushi Jounrnal | Contact us | Subscription Copyright by Qiushi Journal, All rights reserved