KEY MEETING: The 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China opens in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on November 8 (DING LIN)
The 18th National Congress of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC) kicked off in Beijing on November 8. The weeklong congress will draw a blueprint for the development of the biggest political Party in the world and the country it leads in the coming years.
The congress has long been a focus of global media, as it will decide what direction the world's most populous country is going, an issue of great concern both to the Chinese people as well as the international community. More than 2,700 journalists participated in on-site coverage of the meeting, including over 1,700 from overseas.
The much-anticipated report delivered by General Secretary Hu Jintao of the 17th CPC Central Committee at the opening session answered to the worldwide attention. Hu said that China will continue to stick to a path of opening up and reform.
The report reviewed the work of the Party in the past five years, and put forward new tasks for the years to come.
China's achievements in the past 30 years, especially the rapid growth in the last decade, has stunned the world. Its steady progress has come against the backdrop of the recessions in other economies, which have been worsened since the grave financial crisis in 2008. The booming economy of China has not only brought wealth and confidence to the Chinese, but also deeply affected the world. In 2010, China became the second largest economy in the world, a success that could not be ignored.
HOT SPOT: Journalists covering the opening of the 18th CPC National Congress queue for security checks outside the GreatHall of the People (ZHENG WENHUA)
The economy of China carries increasing importance in the world economy. From 2003 to 2011, China realized an average yearly growth of 10.7 percent, much higher than the world average of 3.9 percent over the same period. China's contribution to the world's economic growth exceeded 20 percent.
As a result, the international status of China and its influence on world affairs have significantly improved.
Hu attributed the tremendous success the Chinese people have achieved in the past 10 years to the establishment and implementation of the Scientific Outlook on Development, the latest achievement of the Party in developing the system of theories of socialism with Chinese characteristics.
The new Party theory advocates comprehensive, balanced and sustainable development and attaches top priority to the principle of putting people first, according to Hu's report.
"Together with Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory and the important thought of Three Represents, the Scientific Outlook on Development is the theoretical guidance the Party must adhere to for a long time," Hu said.