China’s Overview of 2002

Major Chinese newspapers published the lists of most important events of the year 2002

Making up so-called events-of-the-year-lists became a Christmas hobby for Chinese mass media. The newspaper of the Communist Party of China, People’s Daily, Xinhua news agency, and the Beijing newspaper China Daily published top ten lists of most important events of the year 2002, as they saw it. All those facts and events took place in China.

As it turned out, the mentioned newspapers had the same opinion on five occasions. All those three newspapers included the following events in their top ten lists:

- The 16th Congress of the Communist Party of China, which elected the administration of the fourth generation and approved the goals for building a well-to-do Chinese society. - The start of the works to move southern rivers of China to the north and to construct West-East gas pipeline. - The victory of the Chinese application to hold EXPO 2010 in Shanghai. - The increase of the economic growth in the country after China's incorporation in the WTO. As a result of this membership, the Gross Domestic Product of China reached a record level of ten trillion yuans. - Air crashes of Chinese civil planes, which took place during the period of April-May in Pusan (South Korea) and in Dalian.

Top ten lists of the mentioned Chinese newspapers include the following events twice:

- Central Committee of the Communist Party of China’s session for employment issues. - The success of Chinese athletes, which was very well exercised at the Asian Games in Pusan (the games took place in summer).

The following events were mentioned on those lists once:

- The improvement of relations between China and the USA, particularly negotiations between Jiang Zemin and American president George Bush at his Texas rancho. The USA also agreed to extend its international terrorism list with East Turkestan Islamic movement in China's Muslim region of Xinjiang. - The completion of selling the state holding of the companies that are rated on China’s exchanges. The separatist statement from Taiwan’s “president” Chen Shui-bian, who tried to interpret the relations with China as interstate links. - The incident of serving food that was spoiled with rat poison in one of Chinese restaurants. The incident resulted in 42 deaths. - The launch of Shenzhou IV unmanned spaceship. In the year 2003 China expects the launch of a Chinese spaceship with a man onboard. - The invention of a supercomputer that is capable of running over one trillion operations per one second. - China’s foreign trade turnover reaches the level of 600 billion American dollars. - The State Council of China passed and corrected numerous laws within the framework of the administrative system. - Jiang Zemin’s speech in the Central Party School of the Communist Party of China on May 31, when Jiang proclaimed the goals of building a well-to-do society. - Communist Party Central Committee’s decision to change its priorities in the work with personnel forming.

In addition to that, the People’s Daily, as well as the Xinhua agency named ten most important facts and events, which took place abroad. Their opinions coincided on seven occasions:

- Active international reaction to the 16th Congress of the Communist Party of China. - The start of the so-called euro era. - The aggravation of the conflict between Israel and Palestine. - The transformation of the African Unity Organization into the African Union. - The hostage crisis in Moscow and other bloody displays of international terrorism. - The Enron affair and several other financial scandals in the USA. - The UN’s 1441 resolution for Iraq and the recommencement of international inspectors’ work there.

The lists mention the following events once:

- The agreement between the USA and Russia for the reduction of nuclear weapons (the document was signed by Vladimir Putin and George Bush on May 24). - Another stage of NATO expansion eastwards. - The USA pulls out single-handedly from the ABM Treaty with the USSR. - North Korea resumes its nuclear program. - Crises take place in Venezuela and in Argentina.

Thus, it can be seen from this information that the most important event of the year 2002 in China is the 16th Congress of the Communist Party. A lot of attention was also paid to economic issues. The selection of those events is of objective character, although there are some vulnerable aspects to it too. For instance, the lists mentioned the session for employment problems, whereas they ignored the origin of those problems: mass dismissals as a result of economic reforms.

The top ten list of relevant events confirms China's aspiration to the self-affirmation as the world superpower. The lists paid quite a lot of attention to Russia as well, although Russia was presented as a passive side in those events. China’s previous top ten lists mentioned Russia only once in connection with the fall of the space station Mir in the Pacific Ocean.

Andrey Krushinsky PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

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