The Communist Party of China (CPC) was founded on July 1, 1921 in Shanghai. It is the ruling party in China, representing the interests of the entire Chinese nation.
After 28 years of arduous struggle, the CPC led the Chinese people of all ethnic groups to finally win victory in the New-Democratic Revolution and founded the People's Republic of China. Since then, it has overcome various difficulties, transforming China from a poor and backward semi-colonial and semi-feudal country into a socialist state with initial prosperity.
The CPC mainly exercises ideological and political leadership. It derives its ideas and policies from the people's concentrated will and then transform them into State laws and decisions that are adopted by the NPC. But the CPC does not take the place of the government in the State leadership system. It conducts activities within the framework of the Constitution and laws, which it has no right to transcend. All CPC members, like other citizens in the country, are equal before the law.
The Third Plenary Session of the 11th CPC Central Committee, held in December 1978, decided to shift the focus of the CPC's work to the socialist modernization drive and set the reform and opening-up policy.
During the process of reform and opening up, and the establishment of a socialist market economy, the CPC has been facing severe tests. It takes the fight against corruption and institution of honesty as its primary goals of self-building. The Third Plenary Session of the 14th CPC Central Committee, held in 1993, pointed out that combating corruption and building a clean administration are the essential conditions and important guarantees for establishing a socialist market economic structure, and have a vital bearing on the success of the reform program and the fate of the CPC and the State. To crack down on corruption, the CPC Central Committee has paid great attention to directing the Party and government leading officials to take the lead in performing their duties in a clean-handed and self-disciplined manner. It has investigated and handled a number of major cases, thus stopping some unhealthy tendencies that had a bad influence on the people.
The 15th CPC National Congress was held in Beijing September 12-18, 1997. At the opening session, General Secretary Jiang Zemin, on behalf of the 14th CPC Central Committee, delivered a report entitled "Hold High the Great Banner of Deng Xiaoping Theory for an All-Round Advancement of the Cause of Building Socialism With Chinese Characteristics Into the 21st Century." The congress elected the new CPC Central Committee and the new Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI). It also adopted the resolutions on the report of the 14th CPC Central Committee, the amendments to the Constitution of the CPC, and the work report of the CCDI. The CPC Constitution defines Deng Xiaoping Theory as the guiding Party ideology, explicitly stipulating that the CPC takes Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought and Deng Xiaoping Theory as its guide to action.
The year 2001 was the 80th anniversary of the founding of the CPC. A meeting was held in Beijing on July 1 to mark the occasion, at which General Secretary Jiang Zemin made an important speech.
The 15th CPC Central Committee held its sixth plenary session September 24-26, 2001 in Beijing. General Secretary Jiang Zemin made an important speech at the session, which was presided by the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee.
The plenary session highly evaluated Jiang Zemin's speech at the meeting celebrating the 80th anniversary of the founding of the CPC. It held that Jiang's speech comprehensively reviews and systematically summarizes the brilliant course and basic experiences of the CPC over the past 80 years. Centering on the issue of what kind of a party to be built under new historical circumstances and how to build it, the speech elaborates the scientific connotations of the "Three Represents" theory and expounds the CPC's historical tasks and objectives of struggle in the new century. The session stated that the speech is a programmatic document of Marxism and is of great and far-reaching significance to doing a good job with various aspects of the Party and government work.
Based on a comprehensive analysis of the new situation and tasks facing the CPC in the new century, the plenary session concluded that it is necessary for it to focus on the issue of building of the Party style. The session deliberated and adopted the Decision of the CPC Central Committee on Strengthening and Improving the Building of the Party Style.
The plenary session pointed out that China has entered a new development period, during which it will build a better-off society in an all-round way and speed up socialist modernization. It noted that major changes have taken place in domestic and international environment, and in the ranks of the CPC. In order to unite and lead the Chinese people of all ethnic groups to continuously push forward the modernization drive, realize reunification of the motherland, maintain world peace and promote common development, the CPC must always represent the development trend of advanced productive forces, the orientation of advanced culture and the fundamental interests of the overwhelming majority of the people. It is also imperative for the CPC to promote new and great projects related to Party building, focusing on the two basic historical tasks of improving the Party's leadership and governance, and improving its ability to resist corruption and withstand risks.
The plenary session emphasized that the guiding ideology and overall demand for strengthening and improving the CPC’s style building in the new development stage should be: adhering to Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought and Deng Xiaoping Theory, and, in line with the "Three Represents" theory, focusing on economic construction, reform, development and stability and performing stringent governance of the Party.
Currently, the CPC has more than 64.5 million members and 3.54 million grass-roots branches. Renmin Ribao (People's Daily) is the organ of the CPC Central Committee, and Quishi (Seeking Truth) is its theoretical publication.