Hu sets out path for future

Updated: 2012-11-09 02:40

By ZHAO HUANXIN (China Daily)

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Ecology, fight against corruption placed high on Party's agenda

Unswervingly follow the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, combat corruption and lose no time in deepening reform, including political reform — these are among the goals Party chief Hu Jintao set at a landmark congress, held every five years, in Beijing.

Hu sets out path for future

Hu Jintao, general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, delivers a report at the opening of the 18th National Congress of the CPC in Beijing on Thursday. [Photo/China Daily]

"The issue of what path we take is of vital importance for the survival of the Party, the future of China, the destiny of the nation, and the well-being of the people," Hu, general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, said on Thursday at the opening of the CPC's 18th National Congress.

Looking back at China's eventful modern history and looking to the future, Hu, also the Chinese president, said a definite conclusion has been drawn: China must unswervingly follow the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics.

He said proceeding along the path is key to completing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects, accelerating socialist modernization, and achieving the great renewal of China.

To reach that goal, China must lose no time in deepening reform in key sectors and discard all notions and systems that hinder efforts to pursue development in a scientific way, he said.

"Our overall approach (in building socialism with Chinese characteristics) is to promote economic, political, cultural, social and ecological progress," Hu said.

This is the first time that ecological progress has been incorporated into the overall development plan by the CPC.

By 2020, the country's 2010 GDP and per capita income should be doubled, he said in a 100-minute keynote speech, punctuated by applause dozens of times, at the Great Hall of the People.

This is also the first time that per capita income has been included in the economic growth target set for 2020. Previous targets called for the growth of GDP, not of per capita income.

The head of the world's largest political organization sounded the alarm on what he said was the "serious graft situation", calling on Party members to be ethical and rein in their family members.

Combating corruption and promoting political integrity, a major political issue of great public concern, is a clear-cut and long-term political commitment of the Party, he said.

Failure to handle the issue could prove fatal to the Party, and even lead to the collapse of the Party and the fall of the country, he warned.

"All those who violate Party discipline and State laws, whoever they are and whatever power or official positions they have, must be brought to justice without mercy," he added.

Hu urged leading Party officials, especially those of high rank, to strictly observe the code of conduct on clean governance.

"They should both exercise strict self-discipline and strengthen education and supervision over their families and their staff and they should never seek any privilege," Hu said.

In the latest crackdown on corruption, the Supreme People's Procuratorate decided to place former Chongqing Party chief Bo Xilai under investigation for alleged criminal offenses, according to earlier media reports.

On Aug 20, Bo's wife, Bogu Kailai, was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve for intentional homicide. Zhang Xiaojun, then an employee of the general office of the Chongqing Municipal Committee of the CPC and a family assistant of Bogu Kailai, was sentenced to nine years in prison.

In his wide-ranging keynote speech to more than 2,200 delegates, Hu said the country must continue to carry out the reform of the political structure, but it will never copy a Western political system.

"The reform of the political structure is an important part of China's overall reform. We must continue to make both active and prudent efforts to carry out the reform of the political structure, and make people's democracy more extensive, fuller in scope and sounder in practice," Hu said.

The CPC should place greater emphasis on improving the way the Party exercises leadership and governance to ensure that it leads the people in effectively governing the country.

"However, we will never copy a Western political system," he said.