- A State Council Information Office white paper and statements made by President Xi Jinping, the Defense Minister, and CCP International Department officials all reiterate China’s stance of having historical rights in the South China Sea, as well as China’s position that the South China Sea arbitration ruling at the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague is illegitimate.
- Xi Jinping’s 1 July speech delivered on the CCP’s 95th anniversary is being pushed as a major work for all state and CCP organs to study, in order to fully understand the CCP’s historical achievements and ideological basis for continued leadership.
China Spiritual Civilization Net
7.11: The Central Propaganda Department, Central Commission for Guiding Cultural and Ethical ProgressOffice, Ministry of Civil Affairs, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Finance, National Federation of Trade Unions, Communist Youth League, and the All-China Women’s Federation issued an opinion on the support and development of voluntary service organizations. The opinion describes what the CCP deems is appropriate work for voluntary service organizations, and reinforces the centrality of the CCP in their activities. The opinion says that volunteer organizations are nonprofit social organizations for the purpose of collecting social resources, delivering social services, and promoting a healthy social atmosphere. These organizations must adhere to Party guidance, practice core socialist values, and work to achieve China’s great rejuvenation. In order to strengthen the work of these organizations, they must revolve around the Party and the government and address the needs of the people, including the poor, elderly, and disabled. They are also to provide disaster relief and medical assistance, the opinion explained. The opinion also emphasizes the need to develop the organization and leadership of voluntary service organizations, and encouraged government officials at all levels to get involved with volunteer activities.
State Council Information Office
7.13: One day after the Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled against China on its South China Sea dispute in the case Philippines vs. China, China’s State Council Information Office issued its white paper on the South China Sea, titled “China Adheres to the Position of Settling Through Negotiation the Relevant Disputes Between China and the Philippines in the South China Sea.” The paper maintains that the South China Sea islands remain part of China’s territory, and that the Philippines has only complicated the dispute by attempting to resolve it through arbitration. The paper says that the Chinese people have discovered and developed the islands for the past 2,000 years, and that the international community recognized this historical fact. It claims that international maritime law is actually the root cause of the maritime delimitation dispute between the two countries. Furthermore, the article stated that because the Philippines made a unilateral decision to bring the dispute to arbitration, the decision is invalid. China, therefore, does not accept or acknowledge the ruling. It concludes by saying that China insists upon negotiation and consultation as the primary means of resolving disputes so that the South China Sea can remainpeaceful. The white paper is available in Chinese and English.
7.14: Party and state organs are being encouraged to study Xi Jinping’s speech delivered on the occasion of the CCP’s 95th anniversary regarding “the relationship between history and reality.” In an interview with CPC News, China Academy of Social Sciences Professor Wan Peng (万鹏) said that the speech recounts the Party’s glorious history and lofty ideals, and shows that the Party’s significance lies not only in the liberation of the Chinese people, but also the achievement of prosperity and development through three separate “great leap forwards.” Wan said the speech showed that history can only be understood through the context of historical development. The speech also demonstrated that the Party knows how to enact reform without departing from the fundamental direction of development, adhering to ideology and political guidance. Furthermore, Wan said the speech emphasizes that Marxism is the Party’s fundamental guiding ideology, and is a theory that has stood the test of time. Throughout the beginning of July, various central and state organs are holding meetings to study Xi’s speech.
United Front Work Department
7.13: Recently, the United Front Work Department organized a group study on the important spirit of Xi Jinping’s speech during celebrations for the 95th anniversary of the CCP. During the group study, the Minister of the United Front Work Department, Sun Chunlan (孙春兰), first expressed pride in the CCP’s achievements over the past 95 years. The study and implementation of the spirit of Xi Jinping’s speech is an important political task for the United Front Work Department in order to further enhance political awareness, overall situational awareness, core awareness, and conformity awareness, as well as strengthen confidence in the CCP’s path, theory, system, and culture, Sun emphasized. In addition, the United Front Work Department was also encouraged to establish a team that consists of non-CCP representatives that can contribute talent and knowledge towards the realization of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese people. Lastly, Sun asked the United Front Work Department to promote itself as a role model, and establish a highly qualified team that is loyal to the CCP.
7.15: The CCDI claimed that in the past month, four corrupt fugitive officials have returned voluntarily from abroad, demonstrating the successful efforts of the CCP’s international asset recovery program. Since the CCP’s 18th Party Congress, the Central Committee has promised to not let foreign countries become havens for corrupt fugitive officials. In 2014, the Central Anti-Corruption Coordination Group’s International Asset Recovery Office was established, the Ministry of Public Security initiated “Fox Hunt 2014,” the Supreme People’s Procuratorate initiated international asset recovery work, and the APEC summit in Beijing passed the “Beijing Anti-Corruption Declaration.” In 2015, the “Skynet” program was launched, which aims to hunt down corrupt fugitive officials abroad and their assets. This year, the Central Anti-Corruption Coordination Group’s International Asset Recovery Office not only hosted a training session on anti-corruption, but also launched “Skynet 2016.” Since Skynet’s 2015 launch, a total of more than 1400 corrupt fugitive officials, including 33 on the “top 100 red fugitives list,” have reportedly returned to China, and assets worth more than RMB 4 billion RMB have been recovered, the article claimed. The director of the International Asset Recovery Office declared that all provinces and municipalities have to enhance their efforts to prevent corrupt officials from seeking foreign shelters, in order to form an environment of “not daring to escape, not being able to escape, and not wanting to escape” (“不敢逃”,“不能逃”,“不想逃”).
7.13: Li Shixiang (李士祥), former Party Working Committee secretary of Langfang Economic and Technological Development Zone, Hebei Province.
7.15: Zhou Xianyan (周先雁), former Party committee deputy secretary and president of Central South University of Forestry and Technology. Zhou has served in various positions at schools of higher education in Hunan Province, including vice president and Party committee member of Hunan City University.
7.16: Zhao Haiyan (赵海燕), Party committee secretary of Sanmenxia City, Henan province. Zhao graduated from China University of Political Science and Law and has served in various Party positions in Henan province, including the vice mayor and Party standing committee member of Xinxiang City. She is concurrently a member of the 12th National People’s Congress.
Ministry of National Defense
7.13: CMC Joint Staff Department Deputy Chief Admiral Sun Jianguo (孙建国) met with the Chief of Defence Staff of the Swedish Armed Forces Lieutenant General Dennis Gyllensporre in Beijing to discuss issues of common concern. Sun discussed the long history of close diplomatic ties between China and Sweden, saying that Sweden was the first Western country to establish diplomatic ties with New China. Sun discussed China-Sweden military-to-military relations, saying that China is willing to continue high level exchanges and cooperation in peacekeeping, logistics, and surveying and mapping. Gyllensporre said that Sweden attaches great importance to promoting a cooperative relationship with China, especially through military cooperation. He also expressed thanks for China’s contributions to international peacekeeping.
Ministry of National Defense
7.13: Defense Minister Chang Wanquan (常万全) met with Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security in Beijing. Chang said that China places great importance on China-EU relations, and in the current complex and volatile international environment, stable relations between China and the EU are very important. He also discussed the South China Sea, emphasizing that it involves China’s core interests, and that the Philippines Arbitration case violated China’s maritime rights and territorial sovereignty. He expressed hope that the EU would remain objective over this issue. Mogherini said the EU highly values its relationship with China, and hopes the South China Sea issue can be resolvedpeacefully.
7.12: During a meeting between Xi Jinping, President of the European Council Donald Franciszek Tusk, and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, Xi reiterated China’s sovereignty over the South China Sea based on historical rights. Tusk and Juncker were attending the 18th China-EU Summit in China. Xi emphasized that China and the EU need to enhance mutual strategic trust and promote win-win cooperation, and that China supported European integration and welcomes European countries to participate in China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative. In addition, Xi pointed out that China and European nations must enhance cooperation in multilateral organizations, such as the G20 summit and International Monetary Fund. Lastly, Xi emphasized that islands in the South China Sea are the historical territory of China, and China’s sovereignty and maritime rights are not subject to arbitration. Xi also stated that China constantly safeguards the international rule of law, insists on the path of peaceful development, and resolutely strives to maintain stability in the South China Sea by solving disputes through peaceful negotiations and historical facts. Tusk and Juncker both reportedly agreed that the economies of China and the EU are highly interdependent, and that the EU is willing to advance cooperation with China to deal with global challenges, and maintain its status as the biggest trading partner ofChina.
7.15: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang attended the 11th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) from 13-16 July in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. On 15 July, Li gave a speech in which he expressed his condolences regarding the terrorist attack in Nice, France, and made three suggestions. The first is to establish a new concept of Europe-Asia partnership through adopting a sense of shared destiny and responsibility, jointly protecting the post-war international order, and abandoning the Cold War zero-sum mentality; the second is to add dynamism to the Europe-Asia relationship by enhancing trade and economic cooperation, creating an open and inclusive market, and increasing investment and opposing protectionism; the third is to consolidate the cultural basis of the Asia-Europe relationship by increasing educational, technological, tourism and youth entrepreneurship exchange. He concluded by stating that China’s current economic growth rate is in line with expectations, with a low government debt ratio and high household savings, and said that China will continue to carry out supply side structural reforms.
7.12: International Department Vice Minister Guo Yezhou (郭业洲) attended the International Ecological Civilization Forum in Guiyang. He gave a speech on “think tank building and green development.“ In his speech, he stated that green development is essential to the nation’s future, and that an alliance of think tanks can serve as an advisory body for the building of an ecologicalcivilization.
7.12: International Department Vice Minister Chen Fengxiang (陈凤翔) met a delegation of representatives of the National Congress for Timorese Reconstruction (CNRT) led by its Vice General Secretary Jacinto Rigoberto Gomes de Deus. Both parties discussed the history of friendly relations between China and East Timor and expressed the willingness to deepen cooperation and promote exchanges.
7.12: International Department Vice Minister Chen Fengxiang attended the 4th CCP-Social Democratic Party (SPD) Dialogue on Sustainable Development in Baotou, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, where he discussed opportunities for Sino-German cooperation. Chen spoke about China’s commitment to the promotion of green development as laid out in the 13thFive-Year Plan, asserting that China and Germany can learn from each other in this area.
7.12: International Department Minister Song Tao (宋涛) met Former Prime Minister of Romania Victor-Viorel Ponta in Beijing. Song lauded Ponta’s contributions to furthering bilateral and party-to-party relations and reiterated China’s stance regarding the South China Sea arbitration case with the Philippines. Ponta voiced support for advancing China-Romania and China-Europe cooperation through “One Belt, One Road” and the “16+1” mechanism. In addition, Ponta also reportedly expressed personal support for China’s stance on the South China Sea issue and pledged to expose more Europeans to the truth of the dispute.
7.13: International Department Minister Song Tao met a Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) delegation led by Nguyen Quang Duong, Secretary of the Party Committee of the Central Agencies Block, in Beijing. Song described the China-Vietnamese relationship as sharing a common destiny, and hoped to exchange party-building experience with the CPV. Nguyen characterized China and Vietnam as having common development goals, and stressed the need to communicate and cooperate with each other in an increasingly complicated geopolitical landscape.
7.15: International Department Vice Minister and China Center for Contemporary World Studies Chair Guo Yezhou met an American and European young scholar delegation in Beijing. Guo emphasized that the CCP attached great importance to exchanges with foreign think tanks and scholars, and both sides expressed the wish to discuss and share views on topics of interest to the international community, including CCP governance and China’s development path.
7.12: Tang Renjian (唐仁建) was confirmed to be the new deputy director for the Leading Group for Financial and Economic Affairs Office and the director of the Leading Group for Rural Work Office. He was previously the Party standing committee member and executive vice chairman for the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
7.13: The State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) announced the appointment of 11 individuals to Party leadership posts within various state-owned enterprises, including China Guodian Corporation, Baosteel, and China Petrochemical Corporation.
7.15: Zheng Xiaosong (郑晓松) was confirmed to be a new CCP International Department vice minister. He was previously secretary general, State Organs Work Committee secretary, and a Party standing committee member of Fujian Province.
7.15: Wang Yajun (王亚军) was confirmed to be a new CCP International Department assistant minister. He was previously head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Policy Planning Department.