Biggest political celebration in China’s recent history underway . . .
On July 1st, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) will mark 100 years since its founding in Shanghai in 1921. In the buildup to the anniversary, an impressive art performance entitled "The Great Journey” was held at the Beijing Olympic stadium Monday night, highlighting the CCP’s role in China’s rise to economic and political prominence globally. Xi Jinping made a speech on Tuesday evening and awarded the ‘July 1 Medals’ to outstanding CCP members at a ceremony held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. These are the first events surrounding what will be one of the biggest political celebrations in China in recent history, marking a significant milestone in China’s modernization.
Not one, but two centenaries . . .
The ‘Two Centenaries’ is a set of goals formally put forward by Xi Jinping at the CCP’s 18th National Congress in 2012. They refer to two significant targets in China’s continuing modernization. By 2021, to celebrate the CCP's centenary, China set the goal of having built “a moderately prosperous society in all respects.” And by 2049, to mark the centenary of the foundation of the People's Republic of China (PRC), to build a “strong, democratic, civilized, harmonious and modern socialist country.” These two goals are considered the foundation for achieving the ‘Chinese Dream’ and topping its modernization effort to date.
Challenges ahead . . .
Working towards achieving the ‘Two Centenaries’ has and is shaping China’s approach to everything from economic to geopolitical issues and will ultimately anchor the CCP’s legitimacy as China’s sole governing party. While this week’s celebrations are significant and highlight numerous achievements, many are also stressing the challenges ahead. Indeed, the CCP faces several obstacles to its continued development trajectory, from a shrinking and aging population, increasing inequalities, economic uncertainties, and geopolitical tensions – all of which could prove difficult to manage. While none of these challenges seems to threaten the CCP’s political clout, they will undoubtedly test Beijing’s flexibility and capacity in the years ahead.
- Bloomberg: China’s communists face daunting future as Party marks 100 years
- The Times of India: Communist Party of China celebrates its 100th anniversary
- South China Morning Post: What is China’s Communist Party planning for the centenary day?