Journalists: Wang Lingyu and Ding Yi    Designers: Steve Zhao and Xu Jing
19th CPC National Congress signals broader opening-up for new era
19th CPC National Congress signals broader opening-up for new era
Chinese President Xi Jinping has said that “China will not close its door to the world” and “it will only become more and more open” in his report to the 19th National Congress of Communist Party of China last week.
Hong Kong should utilize mainland’s advantages in S&T: vice minister
Hong Kong should utilize mainland’s advantages in S&T: vice minister
Chinese mainland and Hong Kong have seen increasingly close cooperation on technology development and innovation in recent years, Wang Zhigang, vice minister of Science and Technology said during the 19th Party Congress.
Hunan aims to speed up pace of ‘going global’
Hunan aims to speed up pace of ‘going global’
Hunan province would rely on the Belt and Road initiative to speed up the pace of going global and attracting investors, its Governor Xu Dazhe told Sino-US.com on October 19 at a press conference on sidelines of the 19th Party Congress. Xu was responding to a question by Sino-US.com on how Hunan should use its resources from overseas Chinese to boost opening up and become a strong province.
Party leaders interpret 'Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era'
Party leaders interpret 'Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era'
In his work report delivered to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on October 18, Xi Jinping put forward the axiom of "China entering a new era". Meanwhile, Xi also explained the thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era.
19th CPC National Congress will usher China into ‘new era’
19th CPC National Congress will usher China into ‘new era’
With Chinese President Xi Jinping announcing that “socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era” at the opening ceremony of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, “new era” has become a buzzword in China’s online community over past few days.
Foreign perspectives of China's 19th Party Congress
Foreign perspectives of China's 19th Party Congress
On the occasion of the 19th National Congress of the CPC, Chinese local media has interviewed foreign political figures, business leaders and academicians to get their perspectives on the congress, the country's achievements and dramatic changes.
Why is 19th Party Congress capturing Chinese-American community’s attention?
Why is 19th Party Congress capturing Chinese-American community’s attention?
With the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China opening on October 18th Wednesday, world’s attention has once again been captured by China which is expected to unveil its development goals for the coming years while summarizing what it has brought to both China and the world over the past five years.
Xi shows direction for reconciliation between mainland, Taiwan: official
Xi shows direction for reconciliation between mainland, Taiwan: official
The work report Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) provides basic principles and measures for the handling of the relations between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan, according to a mainland official.

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Xi's thought enshrined in CPC Constitution
Xi's thought enshrined in CPC Constitution
The Communist Party of China (CPC) added "Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era" to its Constitution on Tuesday.The amendment, approved at the 19th CPC National Congress, juxtaposes Xi's thought with Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, t…

CPC National Congress

How delegates are elected to CPC's National Congress
How delegates are elected to CPC's National Congress
The Communist Party of China (CPC) is going to hold the 19th Session of the CPC National Congress in Beijing in the latter half of 2017. Held every five years, the CPC National Congress is attended by thousands of Party delegates from around the country and will decide on the new leadership and se…
Past CPC National Congresses
Past CPC National Congresses
The Communist Party of China (CPC), which was founded in Shanghai in July 1921, is the vanguard of the Chinese working class, the faithful representative of the interests of the people of all nationalities in China, and the major force leading China's cause of socialism. The party's ultimate goal …
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How China is ruled: Communist Party The following chart explains how China is governed.

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Communist Party
Commission for Discipline linspection
Politburo
Party Elders
Central Military Commission
National People's Congress
State Council
Armed forces
Courts & prosecutors
Provinces & townships

Communist Party

The Communist Party of China (CPC), which was founded in Shanghai in July 1921, is the vanguard of the Chinese working class, the faithful representative of the interests of the people of all nationalities in China, and the major force leading China's cause of socialism. The party's ultimate goal is to create a communist social system. The CPC takes the Marxism-Leninism and the Mao Zedong Thoughts as its guideline. The general task of the CPC at the present stage is to unite the people of all nationalities to achieve, step by step, the modernization of industry, agriculture, national defense and science and technology and to make China a culturally advanced and highly democratic socialist country.

Commission for Discipline Inspection

The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the CPC is an organization run under the National Congress of the CPC charged with rooting out corruption and malfeasance among party cadres. Investigations and prosecutions of cadre who are suspect of corruption are conducted in a system which is separate from ordinary Chinese law enforcement and courts. The system is called "shuanggui" and is greatly feared by corrupt party functionaries. The system has resulted in successful investigation and prosecution of a number of corrupt cadres including some very powerful party officials.

Politburo

The Central Politburo of the CPC or the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee is a group of 25 people who oversee the party. Unlike politburos of other Communist parties, power within the politburo is centralized in the Politburo Standing Committee. The power of the Politburo resides largely in the fact that its members generally simultaneously hold positions within the People's Republic of China state positions and with the control over personnel appointments that the Politburo and Secretariat have. In addition, some Politburo members hold powerful regional positions. It appears that the full Politburo meets once a month and the standing committee meets weekly. The agenda for the meetings appears to be controlled by the General Secretary and decisions are made by consensus rather than by majority vote. Every significant decision affecting China's 1.3bn people is first discussed and approved by the Politburo. The members of the Politburo are elected by the CPC's Central Committee. But real power lies with its smaller Standing Committee, which works as a kind of inner cabinet made up of China's most influential leaders.

Party Elders

The eight great eminent officials, abbreviated as the Eight Elders, were a group of elderly members of the Communist Party of China who held substantial power during the 1980s and 1990s. MembershipConsolidate the ruling status of the Communist Party
The identities of the Eight Elders are:
Deng Xiaoping (1904–1997), "Paramount Leader", Politburo Standing Committee member 1977–1987, Political Consultative Conference chairman 1978–1983, Central Military Commission chairman 1980–1989, Central Advisory Commission chairman 1982–1987 Chen Yun (1905–1995), Politburo Standing Committee member 1977–1987, Central Advisory Committee chairman 1987–1992, Central Discipline Inspection Commission first secretary 1979-1987 Li Xiannian (1909–1992), Politburo Standing Committee member 1977–1987, President of the People’s Republic of China 1983–1988, then Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference chairman Peng Zhen (1902–1997), National People's Congress chairman 1983–1988 Yang Shangkun (1907–1998), President of the People’s Republic of China 1988–1993. Bo Yibo (1908–2007), Central Advisory Committee vice chairman Wang Zhen (1908–1993), Central Advisory Committee vice chairman Song Renqiong (1909–2005), CAC Vice Chairman

Central Military Commission

The Central Military Commission (CMC) refers to the parallel national defense organizations of the CPC and the People's Republic of China: the Central Military Commission of the People's Republic of China and the Central Military Commission of the Communist Party of China. The command and control of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) is exercised in name by the 'State CMC', supervised by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress. The State CMC is nominally considered the supreme military policy-making body and its chairman, elected by the National People's Congress, is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces. In reality, command and control of the PLA, however, still resides with the Central Military Commission of the Chinese Communist Party Central Committee—the 'Party CMC'. Both commissions are identical in membership, thus actually forming one identical institution under two different names, in order to fit in both state government and party systems. Both commissions are currently chaired by Chairman Hu Jintao. The 11-man commission issues directives related to the PLA, including senior appointments, troop deployments and arms spending. Almost all the members are senior generals, but the most important posts have always been held by the party's most senior leaders to ensure absolute loyalty of the armed forces.

National People's Congress

The National People's Congress (NPC) is the highest state body and the unicameral legislative house in China. The NPC gathers each year along with the People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) whose members represent various defined groups of society. The NPC and the CPPCC together make important national level political decisions. In theory, the NPC is vested with great lawmaking powers. Powers and dutiesThe NPC has a collection of functions and powers, including electing the president of China and approving the appointment of the premier of the State Council as well as approving the work reports of top officials. The constitution of the NPC provides for most of its power to be exercised on a day-to-day basis by its Standing Committee. The drafting process of the NPC legislation is governed by the Organic Law of the NPC (1982) and the NPC Procedural Rules (1989). It begins with a small group, often of outside experts, who begin a draft. Over time, this draft is considered by larger and larger groups, with an attempt made to maintain consensus at each step of the process. By the time the full NPC meets to consider the legislation, the major substantive elements of the draft legislation have largely been agreed to. However, minor wording changes to the draft are often made at this stage. The process ends with a formal vote by the Standing Committee of the NPC or by the NPC in a plenary session. In practice, although the final votes on laws of the NPC often return a high affirmative vote, a great deal of legislative activity occurs in determining the content of the legislation to be voted on. A major bill such as the Securities Law can take years to draft, and a bill sometimes will not be put before a final vote if there is significant opposition to the measure. With respect to proposals by the State Council, the NPC has rejected a bill on maritime safety, and it is no longer uncommon for the State Council to amend or withdraw a bill on account of NPC opposition.

State Council

The State Council, synonymous with the Central People's Government since 1954, is the chief administrative authority of the People's Republic of China. It is chaired by the premier and includes the heads of each governmental department and agency. Currently, the council has 35 members: the premier, one executive vice premier, three vice premiers, five state councilors, and 25 additional ministers and chairs of major agencies. The State Council directly oversees the various subordinate People's Governments in the provinces, and in practice maintains an interlocking membership with the top levels of the Communist Party of China. OrganizationThe State Council is guided by a standing committee which includes the premier, one executive vice premier, three vice premiers, and five other state councilors. The vice premiers and state councilors are nominated by the premier, and appointed by the president with the NPC's approval. The premier is nominated and appointed by the president with the NPC approval. Incumbents may serve two successive five-year terms. Each vice premier oversees certain areas of administration. Each State Councilor performs duties as designated by the premier. The secretary-general heads the General Office which handles the day-to-day work of the State Council. The secretary-general has relatively little power and should not be confused with the general secretary of the Communist Party of China. Each ministry supervises one sector. Commissions outrank ministries and set policies for and coordinate the related activities of different administrative organs. Offices deal with matters of ongoing concern. Bureaus and administrations rank below ministries. In addition to the 27 ministries, there are 38 centrally administered government organizations that report directly to the state council. The State Council is formally responsible to the NPC. As the chief administrative organ of government, its main functions are to formulate administrative measures, issue decisions and orders, and monitor their implementation; draft legislative bills for submission to the NPC or its Standing Committee; and prepare the economic plan and the state budget for deliberation and approval by the NPC. The State Council is the functional center of state power and clearinghouse for government initiatives at all levels. With the government's emphasis on economic modernization, the State Council clearly acquired additional importance and influence. The State Council controls the Ministry for National Defense but does not control the People's Liberation Army, which is instead controlled by the Central Military Commission.

Armed forces

Armed forces The People's Liberation Army (PLA) is the military arm of the Communist Party of China and the de facto armed forces of the People's Republic of China, consisting of land, sea, strategic missile and air forces. The PLA was established on August 1, 1927 which is celebrated annually as "PLA Day". The PLA is the world's largest military force and has the world's largest standing army. The PLA comprises five main service branches, consisting of the PLA Ground Force, PLA Navy (PLAN), PLA Air Force (PLAAF), Second Artillery Corps (strategic missile force), and the PLA Reserve Force. The PLA is formally under the command of the Central Military Commission of the CPC. The political and military leadership have made a concerted effort to create a professional military force restricted to national defense and to the provision of assistance in domestic economic construction and emergency relief. This conception of the role of the PLA requires the promotion of specialized officers who can understand modern weaponry and handle combined arms operations. Troops around the country are stationed in seven military regions and more than 20 military districts. Chairman Hu Jintao has defined the missions of the PLA as:Consolidate the ruling status of the Communist Party Help ensure China's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and domestic security in order to continue national development Safeguard China's expanding national interests Help maintain world peace

Courts and prosecutors

According to the Law on the Organization of People's Procuratorates, the People's Procuratorates are China's organs for legal supervision that exercise the power of prosecution. They are elected by and report to the People's Congress at the same level. Article 2 of the Law on the Organization of People's Procuratorates states that procuratorates are set up at the supreme and local levels; in addition, special procuratorates such as military procuratorial organs are set up. Such a top-down structure reflects the pyramid structure of the country's prosecution, in which the superior leads the subordinate. This is noticeably different from the court system in which the higher court supervises the lower court. This centralized system is created to maintain the consistency of the country's legal structure. The Supreme People's Procuratorate leads local and special procuratorates. Local means provincial, autonomous regional and municipal procuratorates and their branches, as well as procuratorates at the autonomous prefecture/cities directly under provincial governments, county, city and urban district levels. Special procuratorates include military and railway transportation prosecution. Procuratorates are established at levels corresponding to those of courts so that cases can be prosecuted in accordance with legal procedures. According to the Law on the Organization of People's Procuratorates and other related laws, procuratorates exercise the following powers: Exercise the power of prosecution on cases of treason, separatism and major crimes seriously hindering the uniform implementation of the state's policies, laws, writs, administrative decrees; Investigate criminal cases they directly handle; Review cases investigated by public security and state security authorities to decide if arrests, prosecutions are warranted; supervise the legality of such investigations; Initiate public prosecution and support public prosecution for criminal cases; supervise the legality of trials conducted by courts; Supervise the rulings and judgments on criminal cases and the legality of activities of jails, detention centers and reform-through-labor institutions; Supervise civil and administrative trials of courts. Structure of the court system in China Supreme People’s CourtThe Supreme People’s Court, as the highest judicial organ of China, has four primary functions: interpretation of law, adjudication, legislation, and administration of the judiciary. Higher People’s CourtsEach province, directly administered city, and autonomous region has a higher people’s court. Higher court hears certain first instance and appellate cases involving civil, administrative and criminal matters and has jurisdiction over certain other matters. Intermediate People’s CourtsAn intermediate people’s court, located in a municipality, has original and appellate jurisdiction in criminal, civil, economic and administrative cases. Basic People’s CourtsBasic people’s courts, located in rural counties or municipal districts, have original jurisdiction in certain civil, economic, administrative and criminal cases. Some basic level courts have established people’s tribunals to deal with minor civil and criminal matters.

Provinces and townships

China is governed as 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four municipalities (Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin and Chongqing) and two special administrative regions. The people in charge of these bodies - a group of about 7,000 senior CPC and government leaders - are all appointed by the party's organization department. Power and decisions flow down from the top level to an intermediate level of counties and cities, and finally to the local-level townships. At each level the party and government structures sit side by side, with the party's representative always the more powerful. Thus a province's party general-secretary takes precedence over its governor. Each level has its own local People's Congress which elects its own government for periods of three or five years.