Jul 28, 2020
Tracking People’s Daily — July 28, 2020
Page 1: A few stories to note on the page.
- First, in Q2, profits of industrial companies with annual revenue of more than 20 million yuan rose by 4.8 percent year on year. Xinhua English has more details. “in Q2, profits in 37 of the 41 industrial sectors surveyed showed improvements compared with that in Q1, with 25 of them reporting profit growth, according to the NBS. Equipment and high-tech manufacturing were among the sectors that saw the most visible recovery, with profits in high-tech manufacturing expanding by 34.6 percent year on year, rebounding from a 17.1-percent decrease in Q1.”
- Next Wang Yang spoke at an event in Beijing about the need to “cultivate more qualified patriotic religious talents.”
- Another PSC member at meetings this week was Li Zhanshu, who led the the first plenary meeting of the Soil Pollution Prevention and Control Law Enforcement Inspection Group. Soil pollution is an important political issue linked to food security. This meeting sets the tone for future inspections. And Li’s promising strict action against violators.
Finally, a commentary based on Xi’s visit to Jilin last week. It says: “The general secretary’s care for the people’s production and life, and the meticulous guidance of grassroots development and people’s livelihood work have demonstrated the people’s leader’s clear people’s stand and sincere feelings for the people.” It adds: “People’s livelihood is the biggest politics…Employment is the foundation of people’s livelihood. We must implement employment priority strategies and active employment policies, comprehensively strengthen employment stabilization measures, do everything possible to stabilize existing employment, actively increase new employment, promote the re-employment of unemployed people, and highlight the need for college graduates and veterans.”
The next bit to note is: “This year’s poverty alleviation must come to an end. It is necessary to resolutely overcome the impact of the epidemic, to benchmark ‘two no worries and three guarantees’ to target outstanding problems and weak links.” The two no worries are: having sufficient food and clothing; and the three guarantees are: compulsory education, basic medical care, and safe housing. That’s the qualitative benchmarking for poverty alleviation.
Page 2: A few stories to note on the page.
- Hu Chunhua was at a session about food security on July 27. He pointed out that provincial people’s governments must earnestly assume the main responsibility for ensuring food security in their regions and fully implement them. The system is called the provincial governor responsibility system.
- State Councillor and Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi warned that “we must strictly guard against and severely crack down on the infiltration, subversion, and sabotage activities of hostile forces at home and abroad, and do not relax in the implementation of various counter-terrorism and prevention measures.” He added: “it is necessary to strengthen early warning and prediction, strengthen overall prevention and control, tighten responsibilities, eliminate hidden risks, resolutely complete various security and stability tasks, and resolutely maintain social stability and public safety…”
Page 3: Here’s what I found noteworthy.
- A piece previewing Xi Jinping’s speech to AIIB today. There will be much more on this in tomorrow’s paper.
- A piece previewing the high-level China-EU Economic and Trade dialogue, which Liu He will chair.
- A story based on Lancet’s editorial piece, which says that “China is facing legitimate questions in many areas of its domestic and foreign policy, but when it comes to COVID-19, scapegoating China for the pandemic is not a constructive response.”
- A report on the meeting on Covid between foreign ministers of China, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nepal. Wang Yi’s proposals were: “first, to consolidate the consensus on unity and fight against the epidemic. Second, to carry out regional joint prevention and control cooperation. Third, to enhance cooperation in the fight against the epidemic and vaccines. The fourth is to promote post-epidemic recovery and economic development.” This doesn’t cover the other details, which were put in MoFA’s statement. Wang said the countries are “connected by mountains and rivers and share safety and security.” He added that the four states should “actively promote the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Trans-Himalayan three-dimensional interconnection network, support the extension of the corridor to Afghanistan, and further release the regional interconnection dividend. Give full play to geographic advantages, strengthen exchanges and connections between the four countries and Central Asian countries, and maintain regional peace and stability.”
- A piece by Martin Jacques, from University of Cambridge, basically backing the new national security law in Hong Kong.
Finally, a set of pieces about the relationship with the US. First, a terse one line on the US consulate in Chengdu being closed. Next, MoFA’s statement about the Chinese consulate in Houston, saying that allegations by US officials have “no factual basis” and are “rumour” and “slander.” Third, a commentary attacking a new US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations report on China’s digital authoritarianism. The commentary says that the objective of the report is to “confuse” people. It is borne out of Washington’s “jealousy” owing to China’s “effective practice of actively using science and technology in the fight against” the pandemic. It adds:
“The intention of the US to maintain “digital hegemony” is completely exposed. The report concocted by the US Senate’s Committee on Foreign Relations frequently flaunts the “leading role” of American technology and advocates that the United States should play a “leadership role”, but is very afraid of free competition and fears that China will overtake it.”
Page 4: Two noteworthy pieces here:
- First, 51 media outlets have released their 2019 social responsibility report. These include 7 major central news media, 4 national industry media, and 40 local media in 29 provinces (regions, cities). They all reported on the performance of political responsibilities, position construction responsibilities, service responsibilities, humanistic care responsibilities, cultural responsibilities, safety responsibilities, ethical responsibilities, responsibilities for safeguarding rights and interests, and legal business responsibilities in 2019.
- A commentary reiterating that entrepreneurs also have a motherland. The piece calls on Chinese entrepreneurs to “firmly grasp the connotation of patriotism in the new era, shoulder the important task of serving the country by industry and strengthening the country by industry, and continuously improve in patriotism, innovation, integrity, social responsibility and international vision.”
Page 9 and 10: This is the theory page, where I’d like to highlight this commentary. I’m not quoting from it here, but it’s interesting because to me it suggests that so much of the Party’s legitimacy continues to be linked to performance. It’s not just nationalism. And this piece emphasises for cadres to keep in mind that performance will matter from a political perspective.
On page 10, I’d like to highlight this report about 32 special supervision teams being sent across the country to target criminal gangs.
Page 17: The lead story on the international page is a call to support the WTO. The other story to note is about a new World Bank report on China’s opening business environment. And finally, PD has covered Ukraine’s Ministry of National Defense announcing a comprehensive ceasefire in the Donbass region.