VIENNA — The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) will make decisions that are important not only for the Chinese people, but for many other countries, said former Austrian President Heinz Fischer.
“For me, one thing is sure: after the conclusion of the event, an even clearer picture of the role of China in the world and of Chinese domestic and foreign policy will be made,” he told Xinhua in a recent written interview.
Fischer noted that Chinese President Xi Jinping, in his first five years as head of the CPC and also the state, has taken important initiatives of the greatest national and international importance.
On the domestic front, Xi has spearheaded an energetic fight against corruption and pushed forward an overhaul of the national economic structure aimed at sustainable development, he said.
On the global front, China has rolled out the Belt and Road Initiative, he said, noting that it is the largest infrastructure project ever launched.
Proposed by Xi in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative aims to promote trade, financial integration, infrastructure interconnectivity and people-to-people exchanges along and beyond the ancient Silk Road trade routes linking Asia with Europe and Africa.
The initiative is increasingly seen as positive in Europe, as more countries there have shown willingness to take part, said the former Austrian president.
Meanwhile, China is making efforts to build a fair world trade system in which all players better share market opportunities, he said.
It is right that China is increasingly moving to the center of the world stage, he said.
Recalling his ten trips to China since his first one in 1974, Fischer said his deepest impression of China is “the tremendously rapid development that China has achieved in recent decades.”
He said he believes that “there is a specific, Chinese economic and social model that has produced enormous achievements over the last 30 years.”
In the coming years, he added, China will continue to face challenges such as environmental problems and wealth gaps, so it is very important to ensure that such imbalances do not increase further.
Commenting on the CPC leadership’s decision-making, Fischer said it shows they follow the principles of Marxism as well as the traditions of Chinese history and culture, such as Confucianism, the awareness of national greatness and the need to preserve the unity of the country.
What’s more, they are trying to apply the advantages of a market economy to the Chinese economy, but at the same time to strengthen the socialist elements in society, he added.