3. What is China's direction and strategic intention?
After over 30 years of reform and opening up, especially after China successfully hosted the Beijing Olympic Games and withstood the test of the international financial crisis, the world has shown a stronger interest in China's strategic direction. Let me point out that China's strategic intention is not as complex or unfathomable as some people may think. Nor is there any hidden agenda or ambition. In fact, China's strategic intention can be defined in two words: peaceful development, i.e. harmony and development at home and peace and cooperation abroad. This is what we must focus on and achieve—not just this generation but for generations to come. This is the policy that will not change in 100 years or 1,000 years. To be specific, we need to achieve the goal by peaceful means, by continued reform and improvement of our own system, and through hard work, creativity and ingenuity of the Chinese people, and long-term friendly co-existence, equality and mutually beneficial cooperation with other countries. This way, the Chinese people, accounting for 1/5 of the world's total population, will rid themselves of poverty and lead a better life. This way, China will develop into a country where people are contented, society is harmonious, and political, material, cultural and environmental development proceeds in a balanced way. This way, China will become a most responsible and law-abiding member of the international community. In this process, we will develop socialist democracy and political system in light of China's national conditions. In a word, the Chinese people have suffered long enough from poverty. Our greatest and only strategic intention is to live a better life, where every day is better than the previous one. We wish the same for all the people in the world. The CPC has termed this process "peaceful development" and the ways and means to achieve peaceful development "the path of peaceful development". As one may notice, this path has been solemnly incorporated into the Report at the 17th Party Congress and reiterated in the proposal for the 12th Five-Year Plan at the latest plenary session. This speaks volumes about CPC's sincerity and resolve to stick to the path of peaceful development.
4. How to see China's development?
After over 30 years of reform and opening up, China has achieved remarkable progress in its economic and social development. In recent years, in particular, China's development has attracted even more international attention. Many think that China is already a developed country, on a par with the United States. This view indicates that the path of peaceful development can lead a nation to development and we have made the right choice. However, it also shows a lack of comprehensive and in-depth understanding of the level of China's development. The reality is that China's GDP, however big it may grow, must be shared among the 1.3 billion people. China's per capita GDP is only US$3,800, ranking about 104th in the world, even lower than many African countries. By the United Nations standard of one US dollar a day, 150 million Chinese are still living below the poverty line. Even by the standard of RMB1,200 yuan per capita income, over 40 million Chinese are still in poverty. Today in China, 10 million people have no access to electricity and each year, employment must be provided for 24 million Chinese. China has a huge population and a weak economic foundation. The urban-rural gaps, imbalances in industrial structure and underdevelopment of productivity are issues yet to be fundamentally addressed. In whatever sense, China is big in terms of population but small in terms of economy. It is a developing country in every sense of the term. The economic and social problems we face are the biggest and most difficult in the world. We have no reason whatsoever to be conceited or arrogant. Our road to real development and better life for our people will be long and hard. This will require the unremitting efforts of several generations or even more. Even if one day China comes close to Western countries, like the United States, Europe and Japan, in per capita GDP, the quality of our economy and life will still lag far behind.
I must point out in particular that even if China becomes stronger, it will remain a member of the developing world and will continue to stand by the developing countries and work in unity with them for common development. That is because we share similar historical experiences with developing countries, we were comrades-in-arms with them, and we have common development tasks and strategic interests. Our position will never change even when China's economy has grown or its international status has changed. Now and forever, China is, and will remain the most sincere and trustworthy friend, brother and partner of the developing countries. Although there is room for improvement in our relations with the developing countries, China's cooperation with them is open and honest and based on equality, mutual benefit and sincere friendship. The hat of the so-called "neocolonialism" does not fit China.