The 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), which concluded on October 21, undoubtedly marks a milestone in the history of the CPC, and had the international community listening closely to the resolutions proposed during the session. By mapping out a blueprint of China's future development for the next five years and more, the meeting is widely considered a major event at this crucial time in China's ongoing reform and opening up process.
Since the reform and opening-up drive began 29 years ago, Chinese society has undergone profound changes. However, new social challenges have emerged amid swift economic restructuring and speedy growth. In this pivotal period of further building on the foundations laid by their predecessors, the job of devising solutions to social problems has been historically dealt with at the Party Congress.
The report of the 16th CPC Central Committee, delivered by General Secretary Hu Jintao, contains overall arrangements for advancing reform, opening up and socialist modernization and attaining the ambitious goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all aspects. It also has definite requirements for comprehensively carrying forward the great new undertaking to build the Party in a spirit of reform and innovation.
New proposals, notions, recognitions, and concepts that have been put forward in the report display the Party's latest developments of Marxism, its successful experiences in exploring the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, as well as its new strategic thoughts to cope with the changed social situation in the new era. For the first time in the CPC's 86-year history, the report affirms that the decision to launch reform and opening up is vital to the destiny of China. The affirmations of fundamental achievements and progress, which have been made since the reform and opening-up policy was introduced, has established a solid theory foundation for further reforms.
The system of theories of socialism with Chinese characteristics, which comprises of scientific theories including Deng Xiaoping Theory, the important thought of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development, are first mentioned in the report. It is a scientific theoretical system in line with Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, but keeps up with the times.
After earnest deliberation by the 38 delegate groups, the 17th National Congress of the CPC unanimously adopted the amended Constitution of the CPC. The Scientific Outlook on Development and theories of socialism with Chinese characteristics were newly incorporated into the Constitution. Meanwhile, the Congress approved the incorporation of the overall arrangements for the four-in-one economic, political, cultural and social development of the cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Along with this, the main objective in the Constitution was redefined as turning China into a prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious modern socialist country.
The new central leadership of the CPC installed by the latest Party Congress is characterized by practical experience and their close ties with the people. Additionally, the depth of knowledge, especially the added expertise in economics, enables this group to play a stronger role in leading the Chinese people toward the country's future development and the rejuvenation of this great nation.