BEIJING, March 18 (Xinhua) — A recently released report titled “Toward Modernity: The Value of Xi Jinping’s Economic Thought” has explored the origins of Xi’s economic thought from the perspective of local governance.
When working in different localities, Xi put forward a series of new ideas, new ways of thinking and new measures concerning economic work. His years of solid practice on the ground have enriched his experience and enhanced the depth of his theoretical thinking, laying a solid foundation for his economic thought to take shape and evolve.
Recounting Xi’s stories of economic governance when he worked at the local level, the report, which was released by New China Research, the think tank of Xinhua News Agency, has offered a vivid illustration of how Xi’s economic thought helped promote local development.
The following excerpted piece tells Xi’s story in Shanghai.
From March to October 2007, Xi served as the secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Shanghai Municipal Committee. At that time, Shanghai was at a crucial stage of reform and development.
During his tenure of seven months and four days as Shanghai’s Party chief, Xi traveled to all the districts and counties to conduct rounds of investigations and studies, and proposed a series of plans and requirements — touching aspects ranging from opening-up, regional integration to innovative development.
LET CHINESE AIRLINERS SOAR
At 9:19 a.m. Dec. 9, 2022, a C919, China’s domestically-developed large passenger aircraft, was delivered to its first customer, China Eastern Airlines.
From the approval of the project in 2006 to the delivery of the airliner in 2022, the C919 project has undergone a painstaking journey of design, manufacture, flight test and eventual commercialization.
Xi has been paying close attention to China’s airliner development. “We must exert much effort to take our own large aircraft to the sky,” he said.
In 2007, the development of China’s homegrown regional jetliner ARJ21 entered the critical phase of assembly. On Sept. 20 that year, a convention was held to ensure the jetliner was ready to fly in the year that followed. Although it was not as significant as the completion of assembly or the maiden flight, Xi still attended the event and expressed the wishes that the jetliner would soar in the sky with pride.
Seven years later in May 2014, Xi, who by then had become general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, visited the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, Ltd., the C919’s developer, on an inspection tour. He boarded the C919 exhibition model and learned about the design of the airliner.
To develop China into a great country, we must develop the equipment manufacturing industry and the large aircraft, setting a good example, said Xi.
He stressed that China ought to provide greater financial support for the development and manufacture of domestic large aircraft.
Large aircraft is a crown jewel of the manufacturing industry and a piece of equipment of paramount importance to a country. It energizes the development of an entire industrial chain and exhibits a country’s sci-tech innovation capabilities.
The development of the C919 is indeed a vivid example of how Xi attaches importance and devotes his personal efforts to advancing innovative development.
YANGTZE RIVER DELTA
Not long after taking office as Shanghai’s Party chief, Xi made plans for an inspection tour to the provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang. When his staff was about to finalize the itinerary, Xi suggested making an additional stop at Yiwu, Zhejiang.
By then, Yiwu had become the world’s largest marketplace for small consumer goods. Many Shanghai officials who participated in the tour said that after the visit, the strategy of integrated development of the Yangtze River Delta had left a strong impression on them.
Xi once used an analogy to elaborate on the relationship between Shanghai and the Yangtze River Delta region. He noted that the emergence of a central city is the result of conglomerated resources and elements, and is enhanced by serving, energizing and facilitating the development of its surrounding areas.
“Just like a heart, when there are more arteries connected to it, giving it an abundant supply of blood, it will beat more vibrantly,” he said.
Xi has always been paying close attention to the integrated development of the Yangtze River Delta. He personally planned, directed and promoted this major strategy after ascending to the position of general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, and announced the decision of making it a national strategy at the opening ceremony of the first China International Import Expo in 2018.
Energized by the national strategy, the Yangtze River Delta region, which takes up only 4 percent of China’s land area, was able to contribute about 25 percent of China’s total GDP. It has now become one of the most vibrant, open and innovative regions in the country.