By Li Zheng
Five years may seem a drop in the ocean of history, yet it is long enough for China to secure decisive achievements on its journey of development.
During China’s 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-2020), the country witnessed remarkable economic performance.
From 2016 to 2019, the average annual growth rate of China’s economy reached 6.7 percent. Its GDP is expected to exceed 100 trillion yuan (about $15 trillion) in 2020.
During the period, 55.75 million poor people in China’s rural areas were lifted out of poverty, the number of people covered by basic medical insurance exceeded 1.3 billion, while that of people covered by basic old-age insurance reached nearly one billion.
Meanwhile, China has attained prosperity and development in cultural undertakings and industries, maintained harmony and stability in the society, and achieved major strategic results in COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control.
Such practical and tangible results and changes have fully shown that after its development during the 13th Five-Year Plan period, China has reached new heights in terms of its economic and technological strength as well as comprehensive national strength, and taken a new and huge step forward in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and realizing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
Economic and social development cannot be judged simply by its total volume, speed, and scale, but also its quality, efficiency and structure. Both the quantity and quality of economic growth should be taken into consideration.
From 2015 to 2019, the value added of China’s strategic emerging industries registered an average annual real growth of 10.4 percent, signaling continuously optimizing economic structure.
During the period, the country increased efforts in pollution prevention and control and significantly improved the ecological environment. It has taken the strongest pollution treatment measures in the world.
Over the past five years, China has witnessed the completion of a number of important domestically built equipment, such as aircraft carriers, large amphibious aircraft, and the Beidou-3 Navigation Satellite System.
At the same time, new industries and new forms of business such as big data, cloud computing, and 5G communications services have continued to emerge in the country.
An economic system and a development mode underpinned by innovation are taking shape.
The vision of innovative, coordinated, green, open and inclusive development has not only been warmly welcomed and strongly supported by the public, but played an important role in all aspects of economic and social growth and guided the development that features higher quality, greater efficiency, more fairness, more sustainability and is safer.
Behind the economic performance, a series of in-depth institutional changes are taking place in China, cultivating institutional advantages for the long-term development.
China has achieved major breakthroughs in comprehensively deepening reform. While focusing on supply-side structural reform, the country has taken moves across the board, achieved breakthroughs in many areas of reform, and obtained decisive results in key sectors.
The country has also made significant progress in comprehensively advancing the rule of law. It has intensified efforts in ensuring scientific legislation, strict law enforcement, judicial impartiality and universal law abiding. The country’s efforts to build a country, government, and society based on the rule of law have been mutually reinforcing.
Besides, China has reached major results in comprehensively governing the Communist Party of China (CPC) with strict discipline.
While making sure that officials don’t dare to, are unable to and have no desire to commit corruption, the country has launched an education campaign on the theme of “staying true to our founding mission” among all Party members.
In general, China has accelerated the modernization of the national governance system and governance capabilities, and further exhibited the strengths of the leadership of the Party and the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics.
As China is bidding farewell to its 13th Five-Year Plan period and ushering in the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), the country is also moving from a journey of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects to a new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country.
The organic continuity in the country’s development stages and coherence in its goals have demonstrated the vitality and sustainability of China’s modernization process.
The 14th Five-Year Plan that China has rolled out consecutively have connected the magnificent course of modern China’s development.
Few countries in the world can observe development from such a long-term perspective and with such a grand vision or scientifically formulate the goals for each stage of its economic and social development like China has done. The country has also united hundreds of millions of people to make concerted efforts to achieve its goals.
China’s capacity for planning, leading, and promoting development, which has been demonstrated over a long period of time, represents one of the country’s institutional advantages and will continue to help the country brave the winds and waves and march forward steadily.
While becoming another miracle characterized by remarkable achievements, China’s development in the past five years has displayed the extraordinary strength of the country.
Standing at the end of the 13th Five-Year Plan period and the beginning of the 14th Five-Year Plan period, China has full confidence and capability to make progress in the next five years, and will surely write a glorious chapter in the new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country.