Friday, 20 October 2017

Xi Jinping and the Chinese Dream

Quinquennial election in China have started from October 18. Elections of the Communist Party are pre-planned. The election of two thousand member council (the Congress), the central committee of about 250 members, the Polit Bureau of 25 members and the standing committee of seven members will be concluded as decided by the party. According to the practice, the current president will be appointed for five more years.

 In the last five years, Jinping has assembled more and more power in his own hands and is surely gonna have full authority for the upcoming elections and the upcoming government. If all is already done, what is left for the discussion? However, the impact of Jinping's monarchy on China's internal situation and external policy-relations is an important issue. There are three major authoritative positions in China, President of the nation, Party Secretary and President of the Central Military Committee. Jinping is ruling on all three positions today. There is a tradition of two five-year terms for the presidency. However, there is no restriction of age or term for the other two positions and during the change of government, the party secretary is the chief-in-command. This gives the sense of how much Jinping has tightened his grip on power. Moreover, five out of seven members of the Standing Committee are likely to retire this time, so those who are going to be elected will be supporters of Jinping for sure.

About five years ago, when Jinping became the president, he started an anti-corruption campaign and after a few months removed his opponents from the council one by one and imprisoned some of them. This included political leaders, senior military officials and some social activists. The impact of these developments will be on China's internal politics. First of all, how will Jinping use such power? According to some researchers, this is a groundwork for the president's third term. China govt. has blocked 'Google', 'Amazon', 'Facebook' in their country.There are Chinese language substitutes for such social media applications in China. Therefore, it is easier for the government to control social media. The Chinese economy is second in the world after the US dollar, and its reserve is more than three billion dollars. China needs export and foreign markets to maintain the pace of economic progress, so it is clear why they are pushing 'One Belt One Road' (OBOR) project. Simultaneously, Jinping has started modernizing the military system.The army of 4 millions from long ago has now come to nearly 2.5 millions. Jinping wants to reduce this number to 1.5 million to make progress in modern weaponry, especially in air force aircrafts, navy submarines, aircraft carrier and cyber space. It is likely that there will be significant difference in the defense sector in the next five years.

China does not consider itself as a secondary power in the field of foreign relations. After Donald Trump became the president of the United States, China has started to see the flaws in US policy. Trump's imprudent, reckless remarks are helping China as America's policies are not as rugged and consistent as they were before, and China is ready to challenge them. In South China Sea, China has continued to increase its influence defying US and Japan, South Korea & Vietnam are puzzled on how to overcome Chinese domination due to US's vacillating policies on this matter. Chinese Navy had no special presence in the Indian Ocean until a few years ago. But now the Chinese ports covering India, military base in Djibouti situated on the east coast of Africa, the massive and ambitious project 'OBOR' is a sign of rising influence of China day by day. There is no doubt that this a matter of concern for India but there are some obstacles for China too. Chinese friends are limited - North Korea and Pakistan! Both of these nuclear-armed countries are completely dependent on China and China supports them for its own purposes.

Since Pakistan is infamous for being a country sponsoring terrorism, every event happening in that country is important for our safety. Under the 'OBOR' project, China has launched a massive scheme to finance Pakistan. Soon the results will be visible. Also, North Korea's atrocious policies and statements have created a very volatile situation. In short, if China wants to compete the US in the race of undisputed leading global power, it will have to maintain its relations with all the countries. Economic competence & influence is just one aspect.

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