WASHINGTON — The annual sessions of China’s top legislative and political advisory bodies would start a historic journey to greater reform and opening-up, said a US scholar.
William Jones, Washington Bureau chief of the US publication Executive Intelligence Review, made the remarks in a recent interview with Xinhua. Jones said China has vowed to open up more in the future, and the world can be reassured to get more benefits from this commitment.
Jones said China’s reform and opening up will be conducted in a steady manner, and “at a pace that is determined by the needs of the Chinese economy.”
“There will be more foreign direct investment. There will be more ties between Western and Chinese companies, but it will be done in such a way that the financial system ... would be subordinate to the physical economy,” he said.
When asked about topics of the two sessions that he felt most interested in, Jones listed poverty elimination, the ongoing structural reform, the anti-corruption drive and China’s international role.
The two gatherings of this year are “extremely important,” because at the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) last year, Beijing reiterated its goal to eliminate poverty in the coming years, said Jones.
“The entire world has been just totally taken aback by the tremendous amount of efforts that have been placed on bringing people out of poverty and with a goal of eliminating poverty entirely by 2020,” he said, adding that China’s efforts can be a model.
He also said the issue of rural vitalization would be a big part of the discussion during the two sessions.
There will also be a major discussion at the meetings about the current fight against corruption, said the scholar.
“It’s very important because corruption leads to ineffective deployment of economic resources and it also creates a lot of tension within the population as a whole when they see some people becoming richer and other people becoming poor and when they see the public goods are being utilized in a not so good manner,” he explained.
As for China’s international presence, Jones said the nation “is now playing a global role as well as a regional role,” which participants of the meetings are also expected to discuss.
Commenting on the proposed inclusion of “building a community with a shared future for humanity” in the constitution during the two sessions, he said the notion “means that the world can no longer operate on the basis of geopolitics, on the basis of a zero-sum game, winners and losers, but in terms of mutual interests,” he said.
“This has got to become the norm for relationships between countries, both big and small.”
And there will be talks about reforms to restructure China’s economy, said Jones.
“China has, because of the international economic crisis, now been concentrating on creating a domestic demand through the poverty reduction, through these structural reforms, through the infrastructure investment. This now has become a major driver for the Chinese economy, and that’s going to have to continue for a while,” he said.