Tracking People’s Daily — September 24, 2020

Page 1: First, up, Xi Jinping’s meeting with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres (English version). Apart from pledging support for the UN, Xi said that “China will honor its commitment to make COVID-19 vaccines a global public good after putting them into use following the completion of vaccine development. China will contribute to the vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries.”

He also said the “UN Security Council should play the role of a collective security mechanism and the Security Council permanent members should play an exemplary role. Pursuing unilateralism and seeking hegemony are unpopular and will surely be rejected.” He added: “All parties should think about how to improve (the current global governance system), instead of overthrowing and starting a new one.”

Then this: “China never pursues ideological confrontation, advocates ‘decoupling’ or seeks hegemony…He also said China will not sit idly by and allow its national sovereignty, dignity and development space to be undermined. Instead, China will firmly safeguard its legitimate rights and interests and uphold international equity and justice.”

Next, the weekly State Council meeting (English version), which focussed on rules for listed firms. A statement after the meeting said that “China will work to refine the institutions and rules for the corporate governance of listed companies, improve their information transparency and disclosure, and strengthen the mechanism of diverse exit options for listed firms.” Apart from this, there was also a decision on improving public fitness facilities.

Page 2: A commentary based on Xi Jinping’s UNGA speech. Basically, it hits at the key points that he made, without getting into any of the controversies about unilateralism and so on. “History has witnessed the efforts of governments, the efforts of medical staff, the exploration of scientific workers, and the persistence of ordinary people before the epidemic. This epidemic tells us that major infectious diseases are the enemy of all mankind, and the international community today needs more unity and cooperation than ever before.”

And this: “We must strengthen unity and work together, uphold the scientific spirit, give full play to the key leadership role of the World Health Organization, promote international joint prevention and control, resolutely win the global epidemic prevention war, and oppose politicization and stigma; we must formulate comprehensive and normalized Prevention and control measures, orderly advance the resumption of business and the market, resume work and school, create jobs, stimulate the economy, and restore economic and social order and vitality. Major economies must strengthen macro policy coordination, not only to restart their own economies, but also to contribute to the recovery of the world economy. We must care for and take care of developing countries, especially African countries.”

Page 3: More on Xi’s speech. First, “enthusiastic” responses from foreigners. A long piece on China’s COVID fight and how that’s shown China’s systemic strength and big country credentials. It says: “A big country should behave big. Going halfway with China and taking concrete actions to promote international cooperation in the fight against the epidemic. This is the urge and expectation of the U.S. government from the international community, including the U.S. civil society. It should also be a major country’s choice to be responsible for the people, the world, and history. Stephen Roach, a senior researcher at Yale University in the United States, hopes: “At this critical moment, the United States can conduct self-reflection as it did in the past and seek cooperation with China in dealing with the global epidemic. This is the only way out.”

Next, Huang Kunming, who is in charge of the Propaganda Department, on Wednesday held talks with Myanmar Minister of Information Pe Myint via video link. This is the operative bit: “The propaganda departments of the two countries should deepen the exchange of experience in state governance and administration, strengthen practical cooperation in the field of propaganda and culture, and consolidate the political foundation and public opinion foundation of China-Myanmar relations.”

Page 4: CPLAC Secretary Guo Shengkun spoke about the ongoing rectification campaign in key industries, in the context of the campaign underway to tackle criminal gangs. He said that “the struggle against evil has entered the stage of decisive victory…It is necessary to summarize and consolidate the successful experience of the special struggle, and promote the institutionalization, normalization, and legalization of the work of eradicating crime and evil.” Next, more propaganda on Covid “heroes.”

Page 5 & 9: On the commentary page today, the lead piece is about risks. “We must be highly vigilant about the black swan incident and also guard against the gray rhino incident; we must have the forerunner in preventing risks, and we must also have the tactics to deal with and resolve risks and challenges; we must fight a prepared battle to prevent and resist risks, as well as a confrontational battle that turns danger into barbarity and turn crisis into opportunity.”

Some of the examples that are noteworthy. “For example, the current economic situation in my country is generally good, but the pressure to stabilize enterprises and ensure employment is still relatively high, and the real estate and financial sectors still need to be vigilant against risks; extreme weather occurs frequently, hidden danger investigations in key areas, and early deployment of manpower and materials require pressure.”

For cadres, the piece says: “It is necessary to be highly vigilant and guard against major risks in the field in which one is responsible, but also to pay close attention to the overall major risks, and strive to resolve risks at the source, not to allow small risks to evolve into large risks, and not to allow individual risks to evolve into comprehensive risks.”

On the theory page then, there’s a piece by Wang Jingqing, Vice President and Deputy Secretary of the Party Leadership Group of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Wang says “in the face of tremendous pressure on our own epidemic prevention and control, we have done our best to provide assistance to the international community. We announced that we will provide two batches of US$50 million in cash assistance to the World Health Organization and send 34 medical expert teams to 32 countries. To 150 countries and 4 international organizations provided 283 batches of anti-epidemic assistance, and provided and exported anti-epidemic materials to more than 200 countries and regions. From March 15 to September 6, 151.5 billion masks, 1.4 billion protective clothing, 230 million goggles, 209,000 ventilators, 470 million test kits, and 80.14 million infrared temperature measurement kits were exported. China has helped save thousands of lives around the world with practical actions, and demonstrated its sincere desire to promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. More and more countries have truly realized the importance of helping each other in the same boat and helping each other.”

Page 17: First, here’s a commentary that’s responding to Donald Trump’s speech at the UNGA, essentially calling it “an extension of a series of botched political shows by some American politicians. It is a manifestation of hegemony, bullying, and hegemony.” And then this: “Allowing the spread of the novel coronavirus with one hand, and spreading a political virus with the other. This is the anti-epidemic script of some American politicians day after day.”

Next, Wang Wenbin’s comments on Trump’s speech. “Regrettably, the United States used the UN podium to disregard the facts, fabricate lies, and groundlessly accuse China of ulterior political purposes. China firmly opposes this. Facts have once again proved that unilateralism and bullying are the most serious threats facing the world…The United States has repeatedly made groundless accusations against China on the epidemic, with the purpose of trying to shake away the responsibility of the country’s ineffective response to the epidemic. This is completely futile…”