Fact Check
Aiming high
By Lan Xinzhen  ·  2023-12-16  ·   Source: NO.50 DECEMBER 14, 2023
On December 31, 2022, while extending New Year's greetings to all people to ring in 2023, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that China will be a country that performs miracles through hard work as it goes forward.

Quoting renowned Chinese intellectual Su Shi, he said China will "charge at the toughest and aim at the farthest," a quotation taken from Proposals on Governance written in the year 1063 that means to take on the biggest challenges and go after the most ambitious goals.

"Long as the journey is, we will reach our destination if we stay the course; difficult as the task is, we will get the job done if we keep working at it. As long as we have the resolve to move mountains and the perseverance to trudge on, as long as we keep our feet on the ground, forge ahead and make steady progress on our journey, we will turn our grand goals into reality," he added.

The year 2023 marks the 45th anniversary of China's reform and opening up. The historic decision to pursue this path was made in 1978 at the Third Plenary Session of the 11th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee. With a daring spirit to bring about social change, the Chinese Government and people took the bull by the horns, and worked hard to remove institutional barriers hindering economic and social development.

For instance, rural reforms ended collective farming, allowing households to regain the responsibility for decisions about inputs and outputs. Planned management of state-owned enterprises was shifted to modern corporate governance. At the same time, China decided to open up to the world and attract more foreign investment. Five special economic zones—Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Shantou, Xiamen and Hainan—were created, and 14 coastal cities, including Dalian in Liaoning Province, Tianjin, Shanghai and Guangzhou in Guangdong Province, were opened to overseas investors. China continued to integrate itself into the global economy, leading to its accession to the World Trade Organization in 2001.

In 2013, the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee adopted a resolution on further reform. While carrying out reforms, the country became more adept at following market trends, stimulating market player vitality, as well as seeing to it that the market plays a decisive role in resource allocation.

China's reform endeavors have now entered a crucial stage where tough challenges must be met. Over the past 45 years, China has managed both external and internal impacts. It has weathered major challenges such as the Asian financial crisis in 1997, the global financial crisis in 2008, as well as COVID-19 and other public health emergencies. China has come a long way with a resolve to "charge at the toughest and aim at the farthest."

Needless to say, the reform and opening-up undertaking has made a big difference.

China's GDP, which gauges the size and health of an economy, has risen from 11th place in 1978 to second place in the world today. It has become a global manufacturer and the largest trading nation in goods. In 2021, China announced that it had eliminated absolute poverty and achieved a moderately prosperous society. China's space station Tiangong now operates in orbit. High-speed rail facilitates the movement of goods and people. During the 2013-21 period, China's contribution to global economic growth averaged 38.6 percent. China's average life expectancy, a key measure of the health of a country's people, reached 78.2 years in 2021, 10 years more than before the reform and opening-up drive was launched.

Today, China is on a new journey to advance national rejuvenation through a Chinese path to modernization. Pursuing Chinese modernization is a trailblazing undertaking. The country is likely to encounter both predictable and unpredictable hardships.

Going forward, China will continue to be guided by the old adage, "Charge at the toughest and aim at the farthest." With this in mind, it will press ahead with reform, break new ground, remove barriers and unleash more potential for development.

Copyedited by G.P. Wilson 

Comments to lanxinzhen@cicgamericas.com 

China Focus
Special Reports
About Us
Contact Us
Advertise with Us
Partners: China.org.cn   |   China Today   |   China Hoy   |   China Pictorial   |   People's Daily Online   |   Women of China   |   Xinhua News Agency
China Daily   |   CGTN   |   China Tibet Online   |   China Radio International   |   Global Times   |   Qiushi Journal
Copyright Beijing Review All rights reserved 京ICP备08005356号 京公网安备110102005860
Copy to clipboard