GP Short Notes

GP Short Notes # 594, 14 November 2021

China: President Xi secures his position in party history with the "historical resolution"
Avishka Ashok

What happened?
On 8 November, the 19th Communist Party of China Central Committee initiated the four-day long plenary session in Beijing. On 11 November, the session released a communique during which President Xi Jinping made an important address that affixed his name in the country's history for the years to come.

The congregation focused on revisiting the country's history and its achievements and passing the new resolution on the basis of its findings. President Xi who is also the General Secretary of the CCP presented the work report to the 348 members of the 19th Central Committee. The communique put emphasis on five areas to reach the goal of national rejuvenation: "upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era; strengthening our consciousness of the need to maintain political integrity and keep in alignment with the central Party leadership; enhancing socialism with Chinese characteristics; resolutely upholding Xi leadership to ensure that all Party members act in unison; advancing the Party's and strengthen its capacity to respond to risks and challenges; uniting and leading the citizen Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation."

The third resolution is primarily focused on continuing with the current status of the country and on the path to development that the country has adopted in the last century.

What is the background?
First, the grand resolution. The communique passed a "historical resolution" on the last day of the session. In the 100-year history of the CCP, only two other such resolutions have been passed. The first resolution was passed by Mao Zedong which cemented his authority over the party and as the country's leader in 1945 and the second by Deng Xiaoping in 1978 which established China's economic reforms and reintroduced China on the world map. Although the latest resolution did not introduce new dimensions in the CCP's politics or the country's economic sectors, it reinforced the major development and its position as a global financial and political powerhouse.

Second, the rise of Xi Jinping. With the passing of the rare resolution, Xi Jinping has entered himself in the league of CCP's most powerful and influential elites. Historically, the resolutions were passed to either remove other competition or to establish a leader's ideology in the party. However, President Xi does not face either of the challenges since he has the privilege of being the President endlessly and possesses the confidence of the party entirely. Thus the latest resolution reiterates his role as the leader of the "new, modernized and developed" China.

Third, Xi's philosophy taking roots. In the previous months, the CCP released a series of reports that showcased China's progress with respect to reducing emissions, achieving common prosperity, ameliorating the people's standard of living, protecting human rights in Xinjiang, amongst many others. The CCP has indirectly adopted Xi's ideology and acknowledged his efforts and policies since 2012 in building China to its current stature. The party and the Chinese ideologue now reflect Xi's ideology.

What does this mean?
The third resolution does not bring about massive changes within the country. However, it re-emphasizes the role of Xi Jinping in Chinese politics and provides him with a legitimate position of being a super leader in the country's history. From this point on, Xi's hold on power in China has tightened much more than it already was, and this will make the upcoming Presidential elections easier. With an assured and rare third term as the President, Xi has established himself and his ideology with practically no resistance. 

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