Inter-party diplomacy helps China engage with world

2021-01-19 12:02:54

Editor's note: This year, the Communist Party of China is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its founding. China Daily is running a series of reports to retrace the Party's footprints over time and reveal how its legacy is continuing to evolve with the country's development. Over the past decades, the Communist Party of China has used inter-party diplomacy to interact with political parties worldwide for the global good as China keeps engaging with the rest of the world through openness and cooperation. Under the leadership of Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, the new type of party-to-party relationship, in which political parties seek common ground while shelving differences, and respect and learn from one another, has been in full swing. The CPC has maintained regular contact with more than 600 political parties and organizations from over 160 countries and regions around the world. Political parties play an important role "in the progress of human civilization", Xi said at the opening of the CPC in Dialogue with World Political Parties High-Level Meeting held in Beijing in 2017. It was the first-ever gathering of the CPC and nearly 300 political parties and organizations from over 120 countries. Saying that the CPC is ready to "make more friends across the world", Xi called on world political parties to build a community with a shared future for mankind. With more than 90 million members, the CPC, the world's largest political party, will celebrate its centenary on July 1. Guided by Xi, the mechanisms for dialogue between the CPC and other political parties have been constantly improving, such as the meeting of the China-Arab States Political Parties Dialogue, the meeting of the China-Japan ruling party exchanges mechanism and the UK-China Leadership Forum. These have enhanced the mutual trust, resilience and vitality of the CPC's relationships with foreign political parties. To facilitate state-to-state relations by way of enhancing interparty friendships, Xi has in recent years engaged in various forms of interaction with leaders of foreign political parties. In 2017, Xi invited General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee Nguyen Phu Trong for tea at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, where they discussed the similarities of the Chinese and Vietnamese cultures and exchanged ideas to enhance the traditional friendship between the two peoples. On Sept 29, 2019, during the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, Xi conferred the Friendship Medal on Raul Castro Ruz, first secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee, lauding his contribution to China's development. "The landscape of the CPC's international work is developing toward one that is more comprehensive and wide-ranging, running via multiple channels at a deeper level, with an expanding circle of friends," said Song Tao, minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee. Founded in 1951, the department is responsible for the CPC's work related to inter-party diplomacy, which has played a special and significant role in China's overall diplomatic work. Yang Jiemian, chairman of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies Council of Academic Affairs, said the CPC was founded with missions to fight against imperialist invasion and seek national independence and liberation, so it always upholds international fairness and justice while safeguarding national interests. As China keeps strengthening its connections with the world, it has become an active participant, promoter and contributor to the existing international system, and will continue to play an important role in improving global governance, Yang said. When the COVID-19 pandemic started, the CPC worked with political parties from various countries to fight against the virus. Together with more than 240 political parties from over 110 countries, it issued a joint open letter in April, calling for closer international cooperation against COVID-19 and opposing the politicization of public health issues and the stigmatization of other countries under the excuse of the disease. In the face of the unprecedented public health crisis, the CPC has sent messages to leaders of more than 110 political parties from more than 60 countries to extend China's support for them in fighting the pandemic, and provided epidemic control protocols and diagnostic and treatment plans to more than 400 political parties. It offered medical supplies and technical assistance to many foreign political parties and organizations in line with their needs. The CPC also shared China's experiences fighting against COVID-19 to help global anti-pandemic efforts through online meetings, including the Asian Political Parties Online Conference under the theme of "Forging Synergy against COVID-19"in late March. Shared future for mankind In a message delivered to the China-Arab States Political Parties Dialogue Extraordinary Meeting held via video link in June, Xi said the pandemic has demonstrated again that humankind is a community with a shared future that shares weal and woe. "China remains ready to strengthen solidarity and cooperation with Arab states and indeed the international community to support the World Health Organization's leading role and work together to build a global community of health for all." Li Bin, a professor at the School of Political Science and International Relations at Tongji University in Shanghai, said that amid the changes in the international situation in the past decades and the CPC's diplomacy in the process, the Party has been contributing to world peace and development. While developing itself, Li said, the CPC considers it important to build a community with a shared future for mankind, which is in line with its founding mission to seek happiness for the people, rejuvenate the Chinese nation and promote global harmony. As China has blazed a development path that suits the country's actual conditions under the leadership of the CPC, more political parties want to learn from China's success to contribute to the progress of their own respective countries. The CPC has engaged in exchanges of various forms with foreign political parties over governance and reforms. Bounnhang Vorachith, former general secretary of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party Central Committee, visited villages in China's Hunan and Fujian provinces to learn about targeted poverty alleviation. Drawing from the CPC's experience, Raphael Tuju, secretary-general of Kenya's ruling Jubilee Party, said the party is exploring the possibility of establishing a party school to inculcate a culture of discipline among party members. The CPC has become a model for wise governance and also for the positive management of ideological, political and organizational issues, said Ilyas El Omari, former general secretary of the Authenticity and Modernity Party of Morocco. Despite its willingness to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with foreign political parties, the CPC has stressed on various occasions that it would neither import foreign models of development nor export the Chinese model, and it does not ask other countries to copy Chinese practice. While leading the Chinese people in managing the country's own affairs, Song said the CPC will advance the building of a community with a shared future for mankind and contribute to world peace, development and progress. Xinhua contributed to this story.