Press conference on China's efforts to promote ideological, ethical and cultural progress

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, October 21, 2017
Adjust font size:

Mr. Sun Zhijun, deputy head of the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee
Mr. Xia Weidong, deputy director of the Office of the National Steering Committee for Ethical and Cultural Progress
Mr. Xiang Zhaolun, vice minister of the Ministry of Culture
Mr. Zhang Hongsen, vice minister of the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television

Guo Weimin, spokesperson for the 19th CPC National Congress and deputy director of the State Council Information Office of China

Oct. 20, 2017

Guo Weimin:

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Welcome to the second press conference held at this press center related to the 19th CPC National Congress. Today, we are delighted to have with us Mr. Sun Zhijun, deputy head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee; Mr. Xia Weidong, full-time deputy director of the Office of the National Steering Committee for Ethical and Cultural Progress; Mr. Xiang Zhaolun, vice minister of the Ministry of Culture; and, Mr. Zhang Hongsen, vice minister of the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television.

They will introduce the work related to promoting China's ideological, ethical and cultural progress, and answer some of your questions.

Now I will give the floor to Mr. Sun Zhijun.

Sun Zhijun:

Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in 2012, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has attached great importance to the publicity, ideological and cultural work. General Secretary Xi Jinping has chaired a series of important meetings on literature and artwork, news and public opinion, network information, philosophy and social sciences. With his visionary planning and instruction, and comprehensive and unprecedentedly powerful and pragmatic measures, breakthroughs have been made in publicity, ideological and cultural work. The outcomes of the Party's theoretical innovation have gained greater popularity, and its communication ability, influence and credibility have also been enhanced significantly. The core values of socialism have been written into laws and regulations, and have integrated into Chinese society. Literature and art are booming in the country. Cultural services to the public are becoming increasingly standardized and equalized, and the cultural market has become increasingly vibrant and prosperous. China's cultural soft power has improved greatly, which has contributed to the efforts aimed at pushing forward historic transforms in the undertakings of the Party and the country.

When promoting cultural progress, we have pursued reforms in a systematic, holistic, and coordinated way. Great efforts have been made to promote innovation in our institutions. Cultural reform frameworks have substantially taken shape.

(1) Major innovations have been made in the development philosophy in the cultural sector. General Secretary Xi said that cultural confidence represents a fundamental and profound force that sustains the development of a country and a nation. He stressed that social benefits should always be the priority, though economic benefits should also be pursued. He emphasized that the creation of cultural products should be people-oriented. He stressed that China's outstanding traditional culture should be developed creatively. Chinese culture and China's stories should be presented to the world at a faster pace and in a better way. He emphasized that reform should stay true to its original purpose. His insightful new thoughts reflect the Party's new strategic thinking and understanding of cultural development under the socialism with Chinese characteristics.

(2) Structural reform in the cultural sector has yielded significant results. We have released over 70 important documents on topics including the integration of social and economic benefits, media convergence, the development of high-end think tanks, reform of literature and art awards, and the aid given to industries such as TV, film and traditional opera. The governance of internal and external publicity work and the administration of cyberspace affairs have also become more coordinated. We have worked vigorously to promote the establishment of a national cultural asset management system and modern enterprise system with unique cultural characteristics. A series of major trial reform projects have been launched. The pillars of the cultural system under socialism with Chinese characteristics have been put in place.

(3) Much headway has been made in the development of cultural programs and industries. Laws have been enacted to ensure the government is responsible for meeting people's basic cultural needs. A public service framework is taking shape. Supply-side reform has made positive progress. At the end of 2016, the total value added of the cultural industry reached 3.08 trillion yuan, and its share of GDP reached 4.14 percent. China has become the largest book publisher and TV drama producer and broadcaster in the world. It also has more movie screens than any other country. A number of masterpieces have made a strong impact. China's brands, voice, and image have gained increased recognition around the world.

(4) Legislation in the cultural sector has made major achievements. Four relevant laws have been promulgated, which are the Cyber security Law, the Film Industry Promotion Law, the Public Cultural Service Guarantee Law, and the National Anthem Law. The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress has released the Decisions on Strengthening Network Information Protection. A large number of culture-related administrative regulations and rules have been released or amended.

In conclusion, since the 18th National Congress, substantial progress has been made in the cultural sector. We firmly believe that under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, we will make a greater contribution to the fulfillment of the Two Centenary Goals and the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation. Thank you.

Guo Weimin:

Now, I will give the floor to Mr. Xia Weidong.

Xia Weidong:

Good morning everyone. Glad to have the opportunity to speak with you.

As you may have noticed, expressions like "historic change" and "historic achievements" have been used to summarize China's development since the 18th CPC National Congress. I think such phrases are completely applicable to China's ideological, moral and spiritual progress. In modern times, China has never been as close to the dream of national renewal as it is today. The CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has complied with the Chinese people's expectations and put forward to secure a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, to achieve the Two Centenary Goals, and to realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation.

A series of new concepts, thoughts, and strategies have been introduced to advance the goals and dreams that embody the fundamental interests of the Chinese nation and all its citizens. These include the five-sphere integrated plan, the four-pronged comprehensive strategy, the new development principles, and the core values of socialism, which require all Chinese to unite around ideals, values and ethics, and to work together to achieve shared goals. The Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era by Xi Jinping is the latest achievement of the theoretical innovation of our Party, which embodies the principles of building socialism with Chinese characteristics and reveals a fundamental strategy ensuring that our great goals and dreams must and surely will be realized.

All people across China work with theory and practice upon these shared ideological and moral foundations. Reinforcing these foundations has been the focus of China's civilizational development in the five years since the 18th CPC National Congress.

On the one hand, we have conscientiously carried out innovative research, education and dissemination of our theories to help people better understand this powerful ideological weapon and use it to guide the practice of achieving these great goals and dreams. The comprehensive education and dissemination of socialism with Chinese characteristics, the Chinese Dream, and the core values of socialism have made clear the following: socialism with Chinese characteristics was the fundamental achievement after tremendous and strenuous effort , and should be cherished; the Chinese Dream is the dream of the country and its citizens, and everyone has the historic opportunity to realize his or her dream; and the core values of socialism are the essential principles supporting the efforts to achieve our great goals and dreams, which embody the values of the country, society and citizens.

On the other hand, we have made great efforts to strengthen and innovate the spiritual development of our civilization. We have promoted role models and values by conferring honorary titles such as "most beautiful person ," "virtuous person," "paragon of morality," and "role model of the times" in China; built exemplary cities, villages, townships, organizations, families and schools; and fostered a culture of integrity and encouraged voluntary service to promote cultural and ethical progress within society.

Looking back at the past five years, we feel deeply that the ideological unity of the Party and society has become more solid, a new ideological and moral consensus has been formulated and a new spiritual perspective has been adopted. To strive for great goals and dreams has become the strongest imperative of the whole society. Thank you!


Guo Weimin:

Now let us invite Xiang Zhaolun to speak with us.

Xiang Zhaolun:

In the report delivered at the opening of the Party's 19th National Congress, General Secretary Xi Jinping gave important instructions on the progress of socialist culture, and the development of cultural programs and industries. He said that to meet people's new aspirations for a better life, we must provide them with rich intellectual nourishment. This instruction will be the guide for our next steps. Now, I'd like to introduce three aspects of our work.

1. The creation and production of cultural products.

Since the Party's 18th National Congress, we have carefully put into practice the important thought of General Secretary Xi's speeches on cultural works. A series of projects have been launched to foster outstanding productions of the performing arts at the national level, to rejuvenate traditional Chinese operas, to popularize and revitalize national operas in China, and to promote the national development and collection of works of fine art. In 2015 and 2016, nearly 2,900 original shows were presented nationwide.

You may have noticed that China's performance market has become increasingly diversified. It has provided more platforms for the public to access cultural products, and helped common people to receive more benefits from robust cultural creation. A series of art festivals have been held, including the 10th and 11th China Art Festivals, and special festivals showcasing Peking opera and Kunqu opera. Themed events for local operas, children's plays, dance productions, acrobatic shows and various other performances have also been staged. In particular, the Galaxy Award has hosted more than 14,000 events to present various shows to the public and to select the best from them. They attracted a total audience of nearly 1 billion annually from 2013 to 2016.

2. Public cultural service.

In recent years, we have committed to making cultural products more accessible to the public, pooled all our resources to promote cultural progress and ensured all sides are benefitting from this process. We have accelerated the building of a modern public service system. Presently, there are 3,153 public libraries, 4,109 museums and memorial halls, 3,322 cultural centers at the county level or above and 41,175 cultural stations at township level. At least two-thirds of villages have their own cultural center, and all communities have a special space for cultural activities. A six-tier public cultural service network is fundamentally in place, providing services to both rural and urban residents at national, provincial, city, county, township and village (community) levels. From 2013 to 2016, nearly 2.3 billion people visited public libraries, and nearly 3 billion people visited museums.

3. The protection of cultural heritage.

General Secretary Xi said that we must promote the creative evolution and development of fine traditional culture. This remark serves as the basic guidance for our work. In recent years, we have made greater efforts in protecting cultural relics. Special steps have been taken to protect the Great Wall, the Grand Canal, major historical monuments and sites related to China's revolutions. More heritage resources have been utilized. More outstanding exhibitions have been presented. More creative merchandise related to cultural heritage has been produced. More Chinese cultural relics went overseas for exhibition, greatly boosting cultural exchange with other countries. In protecting our intangible cultural legacy, we have committed to ensuring that this heritage can be passed down to the next generation and encourage further cultural development. After extensive research, we launched a project to record the practices of those who bear our cultural heritage. We have vigorously promoted the teaching and training of these practices. In 2016, the subsidy for representative bearers of national cultural heritage increased from 10,000 yuan to 20,000 yuan annually.

Together with the Ministry of Education, we have launched projects to train bearers of intangible cultural heritage. Currently, the course is available in 78 colleges. By the end of the 13th Five-Year Plan Period (2016-2020), 100,000 people are expected to have taken the course. Furthermore, we are working with other departments and local governments to launch a project to rejuvenate traditional craftsmanship and enable it to adapt to modern life. We are also working on different policies to protect and promote the development of intangible cultural heritage in oral traditions, performing arts and other fields.


Guo Weimin:

Please invite Mr. Zhang Hongsen to give his introduction.

Zhang Hongsen:

During General Secretary Xi Jinping's report to the 19th CPC National Congress the day before yesterday, he made a penetrating summary on and highly recognized the ideological, moral and cultural progress of the past five years.

We are all greatly motivated. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, under the comprehensive arrangements and requirements of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping as its core, the scale of the media sector, including press, publication, radio, film and television, has been expanded, the strength of the industry has been upgraded and the capability of serving the overall interests of China has improved. China is making strides to becoming a powerful nation in the publication, radio, film and television sectors, which can be seen in the following aspects.

First, we have formed a modern media system with relatively strong influence. China has now 584 publishers for books, 1,894 publishers for newspapers, 10,084 publishers for journals, 2,578 radio and TV broadcasters including China National Radio (CNR), China Radio International (CRI) and China Central Television (CCTV), as well as a batch of new media convergence platforms. Flagship media outlets for international communication are developing rapidly. Since China Global TV Network (CGTN) began broadcasting in late 2016, it has gradually set up a multilingual, multi-channel and multi-platform framework with six TV channels, three overseas branches, and one new media cluster; CCTV has further expanded globally: its coverage of major global news events reached 97 percent in 2016.

Second, we have formed a large-scale content production system. Last year, China has published 500,000 different books, produced 7.71 million hours of radio programs, 3.52 million hours of TV programs, 772 feature films, 334 domestic TV series containing 14,912 episodes, around 120,000 minutes of TV animations, as well as over 10,000 hours of TV documentaries. China's publications of books, TV series, animations and feature films are all among the world's top. We have also introduced a batch of excellent works which spread contemporary Chinese values and demonstrate Chinese culture and spirit.

A series of themed book publications including the book featuring Xi's speeches (2016) and "Anecdotes and Sayings of Xi Jinping" were warmly received by readers. A series of mainstream films like "The Founding of an Army" and "Wolf WarriorsⅡ" have set examples in movie productions. "Wolf WarriorsⅡ" has raked in 5.6 billion yuan at the box office.

Third, we have formed a wide modern transmission and publication system. China boasts the world's largest multi-technique radio and TV transmission coverage network. The proportions of the population who have access to radio and TV are 98.37 percent and 98.88 percent respectively. The number of movie screens in China has reached 49,000, ranking first in the world. In 2016, urban theatres received 1.37 billion visits and the number is increasing this year. The number of sales outlets for publications reached 163,000.

Fourth, we have formed a well-structured industrial system. China now boasts 126 publishers, distributors and printing groups for books and journals, over 2,000 film production and investment groups, and 14,389 radio and TV production and operation entities, among which 69 are listed companies.

In 2016, China's press, publication, printing and publishing services saw a turnover of 2.36 trillion yuan, an increase of 42.17 percent over the 1.66 trillion yuan in 2012. The radio and TV sectors generated incomes of 503.98 billion yuan, an increase of 54.19 percent over the 326.85 billion yuan generated in 2012; in 2016, box office sales nationwide reached 49.28 billion yuan, an increase of 188.66 percent over the 17.07 billion yuan sales in 2012. China's media sector, including press, publication, radio, film and television is continuing to contribute an increasing share in the national economy.

Guo Weimin:

Now let's move on to the question and answer session.

China Global Television Network (CGTN):

We have noticed that in recent years structural reform of the cultural sector has highlighted the importance of putting social benefits first while pursuing economic returns. This point is once again clearly defined in the report delivered at the opening session of the 19th CPC National Congress. We would like to know about your considerations behind this order of priority and the situation in this area.

Sun Zhijun:

Under the condition of a socialist market economy, culture has dual functions of educational guidance and entertainment, which determines that cultural products and services also have dual ideological and commercial attributes. Therefore, we simply cannot take market share, audience rating, box-office revenue and circulation figures as the only measurement standards, and we absolutely cannot become "slaves" to the market. So, how to ensure that cultural enterprises always put social benefits first while pursuing economic returns is indeed a major issue in the structural reform of the cultural sector.

While deepening this structural reform, we lay much emphasis on the establishment of system and mechanisms that put social benefits first while pursuing economic returns and make it a key area in policy design and an important standard in the overall assessment and evaluation system. This is mainly related to the following four aspects.

First, strengthening top-level design. The General Office of the Central Committee of the CPC and the General Office of the State Council have issued guidance on putting social benefits first while pursuing economic returns. The guidance is of fundamental and overall significance because it further defines the overall requirements and policies.

Second, establishing a modern enterprise system with strong cultural characteristics. We encourage cultural enterprises to build, in accordance with laws and regulations, the necessary assets organizational forms and management modes that can give full expression to cultural characteristics and meet modern enterprise requirements in terms of business philosophy, governance structure, institutional establishment and performance assessment.

Third, improving the cultural management system. We focus on the establishment of a State-owned cultural assets management system that integrates the management of brainpower, administrative affairs, assets and guidance for cultural progress. We have introduced specific measures for assessing social benefits, making clear that social benefits must account for more than 50 percent in the proportion of performance assessment of State-owned cultural enterprises. At the same time, we have also strengthened the management of the cultural market to create a good external environment.

Fourth, improving economic policies for the sound development of the cultural sector. We have issued relevant economic policies, and improved the mechanisms to guide, incentivize, support and compensate cultural enterprises. These approaches are designed to ensure that cultural enterprises, while adhering to social values and social benefits in the market economy, can get down to work without any excessive mental burden, achieve their own development, and enhance their development vitality, strength and competitiveness. Thanks.

Cameroon Radio Television (CRTV) :

Mr. Zhang, you mentioned just now that China is making great strides towards becoming a strong nation in the publication, radio, film and television sectors, so what are the concrete measures China has taken in this respect?

Zhang Hongsen:

China has established a firm ideological, material and technical basis for becoming a powerful nation in the publication, radio, film and television sectors. Our efforts focus on the following three aspects:

First, deepening reforms to boost media vitality. We will deepen the supply-side structural reform, so as to optimize the industry structure and increase quality and value. A large number of modern enterprises in publication, radio and television have emerged and developed as a result.

Second, accelerating media convergence and industry transformation. We have promoted integration, especially the integrated development of traditional and new-era publishing means to develop new and modern mainstream media. We have also enhanced the building of a "Smart Radio and TV" network, and digitization of the publication sector, so as to foster new driving forces and engines for growth. New models and businesses have become strong growth points in the fields of publication, radio and television.

Third, sparing no effort to create various masterpieces. We have implemented a high-quality strategy, aimed at encouraging excellent and original works. We are carrying out a long-term plan of presenting 100 excellent works in five areas - films, TV plays, cartoons, documentaries and online content products. In recent years, high-quality works in fields such as film, TV plays, network literature, internet audio and visual compositions, books, newspapers and magazines, have emerged and been well received by the audience and the market at large. Our high-quality works are not only popular in China, but also have built brand recognition and won market share abroad.

An overall arrangement of publicizing our thinking and culture was part of the report to the 19th CPC National Congress. We must remain confident in our culture and promote the prosperity of socialist culture in particular. We plan to take even more steps towards creating a powerful force in the publication, radio, film and television sectors and make our contribution to the prosperity of socialist culture. Thank you.

People's Daily:

Socialism with Chinese characteristics has seen steady progress since the 18th CPC National Congress. What role has ideological and theoretical guidance played in this process?

Xia Weidong:

Using theories that adapt with the times is a long-standing convention and the biggest advantage of the CPC. As our practices evolve over time, so too does our theoretical guidance. One major advancement since the 18th CPC National Congress has been the formation of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. Over the past five years, the historic shifts and achievements of the Party and the nation are attributable to the scientific guidance of this innovative theory.

Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era demonstrates a deep understanding of the nature of the times, historical trends and our actual conditions; it demonstrates a deep understanding of the principles for developing socialism with Chinese characteristics; it fully reflects the fundamental interests of the overwhelming majority of the people of China; it represents the full application of strategies to govern the country. It is the latest achievement in adapting Marxism to the Chinese context, an important component of the system of theories of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and a powerful ideological tool to guide the Party in carrying out our great struggle, developing our great project, promoting our great cause and realizing our great dream. The Party must adhere to its theoretical guidance for a long time.

Over the past five years, the core task of our ideological and theoretical development has been using this innovative theory to arm the whole Party, motivate the public and guide our practice.

China National Radio:

I have a question for Mr. Xiang. You mentioned just now that China has increased its investment in public cultural services over the past few years. You also mentioned that the construction of the public cultural services network has been completed. And the Public Cultural Service Guarantee Law of China also proposed to realize the equalized sharing of public cultural services between urban and rural people.

However, while looking back to our interviews, we have learned that some hinterland villages in the middle and western parts of China still have very limited access to the service, and the local cultural facilities there have not been well maintained. So would you please tell us what approaches the Ministry of Culture will adopt to reach out and provide the resources needed at these far-flung areas?

Xiang Zhaolun:

Thanks a lot. You have raised a very important question. When addressing the construction of the public cultural services, we have three key words: basics, standardization and equalization. They are essential to the actual situation of the nation in our resolve to address unbalanced and insufficient development. Our focus is to promote regional equilibrium.

Reaching out and providing the resources needed at these far-flung areas is also one of the most critical works in the public cultural services. In view of that, we are now adopting a slew of measures to solve this problem and the elements of the job can be summarized as standards, internet, content and talents.

First is the standards. We have formulated guidance standards on the national basic public cultural services. The standards have made specific provisions for the content and quantity of cultural services that can be enjoyed free of charge by the urban and rural grassroots. Now, the standards are still being implemented everywhere, and we are promoting the implementation of these standards one by one so that they can become a real part of the cultural life of the people.

Second is the internet. The internet service should be available to all areas and grassroots communities. As a result, we have specifically initiated certain projects including the program of cultural service centers covering underdeveloped ethnic autonomous prefectures and border villages, and moving libraries, to facilitate the construction of county-level libraries, cultural centers and sub-centers, driving high-quality cultural resources to towns and villages, especially, the poverty-stricken regions.

Third is the content. The development of cultural undertakings and industries has greatly enriched our cultural resources. We are actively using various means to provide increasingly rich public cultural resources to grassroots communities. For example, a large measure we are carrying out is the digital library promotion project at the county level. The county level libraries will have free access to the digital resources provided by the national library. Over 1.6 million copies of e- books from the national library and more than 1,000 kinds of periodicals, as well as 600 kinds of newspapers and over 1,500 sections of open lectures are now available to the county level libraries.

Fourth is relying on talents to build public culture. We should focus on the teamwork of full-time or part-time staff dedicated to the construction of community-level cultural services. In the past few years, we have sent more than 80,000 outstanding cultural figures to remote and impoverished regions, border areas and the former revolutionary bases. Meanwhile, we have organized and sent a large number of cultural volunteers to the countryside and far-flung areas for voluntary service. There are more than 100,000 volunteers offering their services to grassroots communities.

When accomplishing those tasks, we should still increase our efficiency and improve the quality of our services to provide more real and concrete benefits to our people. Thank you.


According to a survey of the Pew Research Center, China and the United States are almost neck and neck in global popularity, which is seen as an improvement to China's global image. Were you surprised by the result? Some critics say China is investing heavily in developing soft power, spending billions to extend its global media influence. Is that true? What can be expected from the 19th CPC National Congress in terms of China reinforcing its soft power competition with the U.S. Thank you.

Sun Zhijun:

Thank you for your great attention to China's global image. We have noticed that recently many international research centers have published their findings which indicate a constant rise in China's overall international influence, the attention it garners and its overall image. The findings are positive and objective. The main reasons for the rise are as follows:

First, faced with the complex situation in the world, especially the influence of the global financial crisis, China has explored a road suitable for its own development conditions. In recent years, the country's economy has seen stable and healthy development, its society has seen progress in all respects, and the people's living standards have improved significantly, which combine to create the "China miracle."

Second, China has fulfilled its responsibilities as a major country in the world. We put forward the Belt and Road Initiative and the concept of Building a Community of Shared Future for Mankind. China is not only the biggest contributor to the world economy, but also has contributed to the tackling of global challenges regarding climate change, cyber security, public health and poverty reduction.

Third, we have actively promoted cultural exchanges with other countries. We have strengthened cooperation with media organizations in other countries; we also actively developed services for foreign cultural trade so that Chinese culture can get across to other countries and China's stories can be properly told.

Through increased exchanges, people elsewhere have gained a better understanding of China and have become more friendly towards China. With this China has gained a good global image. It is arguably the advantage and vitality of China's system, the positive significance of China's approach and the unique appeal of Chinese wisdom which has earned China increasing and better understanding, acquaintance and recognition from other countries. Therefore, we firmly believe that guided by the principles of the 19th CPC National Congress, China will achieved better development and make new impressive progress in a new era.

Of course, we remain committed to peaceful development, mutual benefit and advancing the common interests of all in strengthening international exchanges and cooperation. We will work to establish a new type of international relations that features mutual respect, fairness and justice, and win-win cooperation with other countries including the United States; we will promote exchanges, mutual learning and co-existence of different civilizations to better preserve the diversity of civilization in the world; and we will pursue the building of a community of shared future for mankind with other countries to create a better future for humanity.

Democracy Wave of Myanmar:

I have noticed that one of the speakers is from the Office of the National Steering Committee for Ethical and Cultural Progress. There is no such institution in our country. Could you provide more information about this institution? What role does it play in China's development ?

Xia Weidong:

The Office of the National Steering Committee for Ethical and Cultural Progress, founded in 1997, is responsible for organizing, coordinating and promoting ethical and cultural progress in China. It shares office space and works together with the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee.

Since the reform and opening up, the CPC has proposed with great vision that while promoting socialist material well-being, it is also necessary to advance socialist ethical and cultural progress. A strategy for enhancing all of these aspects has been established. This strategy stresses that there can only be real socialism with Chinese characteristics if achievements are made in all aspects.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has attached great importance to making ethical and cultural progress. General Secretary Xi Jinping has pointed out that the cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics can be pushed forward successfully only if we make progress in all aspects, see achievements on all fronts of China's development and improve both material prosperity and cultural and ethical standards.

Since the reform and opening up, especially since the 18th CPC National Congress, an important reason why China has been experiencing historic changes and achievements is that we have relentlessly implemented the strategy of making progress on all fronts.

In the past two decades since its founding, the Office of the National Steering Committee for Ethical and Cultural Progress has firmly implemented this strategic deployment of the CPC Central Committee. It has continued to innovate in promoting ethical and cultural progress, with intellectual and moral development as the core and cultivation of the spirit of the times as the focus. For example, we have launched campaigns to enhance civility in cities, villages, organizations, households and campuses. We have boosted the public profile of role models to encourage the people to follow their example. We have made great efforts to improve the environments of both urban and rural areas and enrich the people's ethical and cultural life. These measures have played an important role in refining people's character and social civility, as well as advancing the all-round development of the people and comprehensive social progress.

China & Africa Magazine affiliated with Beijing Review:

In recent years, the Chinese film industry has been growing fast. In the past five years, what measures have been undertaken by the relevant departments to ensure that while the industry is booming the films can still play a positive role in spreading socialist core values? What the new measures can we expect to see in the future?

Zhang Hongsen:

Over the past five years, the achievements of the Chinese films have attracted worldwide attention, and there have been a number of excellent films appearing, such as "The Taking of Tiger Mountain,""Operation Mekong,""Wolf Totem,""Monkey King: The Hero Returns,""Wolf Warriors 2".The statistics show that, for example, from 2012 to 2016, the number of Chinese film investment, creation and production entities has surpassed 2,000. In 2012, the industry only grossed 17.073 billion yuan in box office returns. By the end of 2016, the box office gross had reached 49.283 billion yuan. This year, we are achieving a double-digit increase from 2016.

The number of screens at urban theaters around the nation stood at 13,000 in 2012. As of today, that number has reached 49,000, a 270 percent increase. In 2012, the number of theater admissions at urban cinemas was 466 million. Last year, admissions reached 1.372 billion, an increase of 194 percent. This year, the admissions have already reached the level for the whole last year.

In 2012, the Chinese film box office gross accounted for 48.46 percent of the total market. In 2015, domestic films accounted for 62.82 percent, while in 2016 the figure was 58.33 percent. This set of figures can show that, in the scale of development and the development speed, China has become the world's second largest film market with a dominant national film culture.

In the past five years, the reason for the great prosperity in the development of the film industry is inseparably intertwined with the following experiences. First, we adhered to people-centered creative orientation, vigorously promoted socialist core values, told Chinese stories well, and managed to advance supply-side reform in the film industry by improving the quality and level of the products, as well as strengthening the core competitiveness of domestic films;

Second, we have deepened the reform of film industry system and mechanism, and constantly mobilized social forces to participate in the development of the film cause, and formed a new prospect for Chinese film development with co-participation by diverse economic sectors, a variety of ownerships and various social forces;

Third, we insisted on an innovation-driven approach. In the creative aspect, filmmakers have constantly explored the themes, forms, genres and styles of the art form represented by motion pictures, so that more outstanding and innovative works now occupy the main market. In the talent training aspect, we broke the traditional model, and helped in multi-level, multi-form ways to promote the rise of a new force in the Chinese film industry. According to statistics, in three consecutive years, the Chinese film new forces represented by young talents have seen their works occupying more than 60 percent of domestic output;

Fourth, we insisted on opening up, strengthening efforts for foreign co-operation. We have signed cooperation deals with partners in 20 countries to make films, and the cooperation between China and the United States, between China and Central European countries, between China and Asian countries have become increasingly active. The prospects in regard to opening-up, competitiveness, cooperation and win-win benefits is taking shape.

In the report delivered by General Secretary Xi Jinping to the 19th CPC National Congress, he clearly pointed out the new direction for building stronger cultural self-confidence and helping socialist culture to flourish. The film industry will follow the guiding principles of the 19th CPC National Congress, and work hard in three aspects: First, we will establish "three attentions" and resist the "three vulgars." The "three attentions" means paying attention to taste, style and responsibility in terms of creative fashion, while consciously resisting making the vulgar, kitsch and coquetry-dominated works; Second, we will strengthen the efforts for realistic film creation. We will advocate the original creative spirit for "paying close attention to reality, addressing the concerns of society, and sincerely caring for others;" Third, we will make China's film industry and film market bigger and stronger, initiating a new journey for China to go from being a major market for films to becoming a strong country in making films. Thank you.

Kyung Hyang Daily News:

China recently issued an intellectual property rights (IPR) solution for foreign-invested enterprises. So are there IPR protection measures for TV, publishing and cultural industries? Can you share some of the details? In addition, due to THAAD disputes, there are obstacles between China and South Korea in terms of cultural cooperation. After the 19th CPC National Congress, can we expect positive exchange between the two sides? Thank you.

Zhang Hongsen:

Let me answer your questions. For the first one, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television works with various government departments including the Cyberspace Administration of China, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and the Ministry of Public Security to crack down on network infringement piracy in a special campaign called "Sword Net Action." "Sword Net Action" includes investigating online infringement and piracy cases, rectifying the copyright order in key areas, promoting the cooperation of relevant copyright parties and other measures to protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese and foreign intellectual property rights holders, which also includes foreign enterprises. This effectively regulates the copyright order on the internet. This campaign has been praised and recognized by the Motion Picture Association of America, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, the International Organization for Standardization, the Publishers Association, the Association of American Publishers and many other foreign institutions.

In September of this year, we carried out "Sword Net 2017." The focus of this special campaign was to enhance the special protections of intellectual property rights for foreign-invested enterprises. In the online areas of film, television, music, animation, software, teaching materials and others, and on platforms of e-commerce and app stores, we have conducted major copyright maintenance, standardization and remediation. This campaign is still in action. We believe that as this campaign deepens , the rights and interests of domestic and foreign intellectual property rights holders will be more effectively protected, and the copyright order will be better regulated.

For the second question, I noticed that at the recently concluded Busan International Film Festival, there were a lot of Chinese filmmakers. Within the scope of my business, I also observed many of the exchange and cooperation projects between China and South Korea proceeding to new phases. Here I would like to stress that cultural exchange is not an average commodity trade or a trade in goods. Cultural exchange is about where the people's hearts are, and about making choices with emotion. So we can say that cultural exchange is an exchange of warmth, which comes from people's hearts and emotions. When people's hearts are interlinked, and the feelings on each side are mutual, cultural exchange and cooperation will certainly move in a positive direction. The depth and breadth of cultural exchange depend on the emotional temperature. We have to face this and think about it together. Thank you.

Xinhua News Agency:

The cultural industry has been developed quickly in recent years, continually enriching people's spiritual and cultural life. Meanwhile, new requirements to further promote the cultural industry were put forward in the report. Would you like to introduce the current development of the cultural industry and the likely next step?

Sun Zhijun:

Developing the cultural industry is an important part of building an extensive socialist culture, and also a vital path to satisfy people's needs for a better life. As mentioned in the report, it's a major program we have adopted to tackle unbalanced and inadequate development in some regions, and also to adjust the economic structure. For years, we have attached great importance to actively promoting the overall development of the cultural industry.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the total added value of the cultural industry increased from 1.81 trillion yuan in 2012 to 3.08 trillion yuan in 2016, and its share of GDP increased from 3.48 to 4.14 percent. We are going to take the following measures to promote the cultural industry:

First, implementing new concepts. We will push forward the supply-side structural reform in the cultural industry under the guidance of new development concepts, make sure it is developed in a healthy way with increased quality and efficiency.

Second, satisfying new needs. In order to satisfy the primary cultural needs of the masses, we will improve cultural services by innovating in terms of contents, methods and ways, while maintaining the right tone in public. We will work to deliver more quality cultural products and improve cultural services. At the same time, we will seek to guide cultural consumption patterns to ensure the cultural industry develops in a healthy way.

Thirdly, nurturing new cultural business models. We will rely on high technology to inspire cultural innovation, at the same time reflect the elements of Chinese culture, and provide fresh impetus for the advance of the cultural industry through implementation of the "Internet Plus" strategy and "Culture Plus" initiative.

Fourthly, expanding markets. We will focus on establishing a sound modern cultural industry and market system, encourage and guide social capital to flow into cultural industry, which now enjoys dynamical development. At the same time, we will work hard to promote international cultural trade, so as to expand the space for cultural development, better lead the domestic market and improve China's cultural influence in overseas markets, in the process further developing a modern cultural industry in faster and better ways. Thanks.

Prensa Latina:

I want to know in which way the Belt and Road Initiative have strengthened the cultural ties between China and other countries. The second question is does China have new proposals to promote its cooperation with countries along the Belt and Road in the culture and information field.

Xiang Zhaolun:

Thank you very much for raising a very important question. The Belt and Road Initiative doesn't just involve economy and trade, but is the road of culture. The joint construction of Belt and Road has brought new opportunities for economic growth and cultural exchanges between China and countries along the routes. This will vigorously promote friendship among the people in China and those in countries along the Belt and Road, and promote cultural exchanges and cooperation between them in an all-round way.

Over 300 inter-governmental cooperation agreements and related action plans covering cultural exchanges have been signed so far.

First, in terms of cooperation in culture and art, the Silk Road International League of Theaters and the Silk Road International League of Museums have already been established, and we will promote and set up other leagues covering art festivals, libraries and art galleries to form closer cooperative relations. We will also provide renowned Sinologists and young scholars with more opportunities to take part in exchanges and to visit China, and encourage more translations and the introduction of literary works, films and television programs from countries along the Belt and Road. Meanwhile, we will also do our part to present more literary works, films and television programs and cultural products to countries along the Belt and Road.

Second, in terms of cooperation in cultural trade, we will focus on promoting mutual investment in cultural industries and carry out cooperation in sectors of animation, game, cultural relics and museum. There is huge potential and broad prospects in this regard.

Third, in terms of cooperation in cultural relics protection, countries along the Belt and Road all possess a long history of civilization and are rich in cultural relics. We have carried out cooperative archaeological activities with 15 countries, and more than 1,000 items (sets) of cultural relics related to the theme of the Belt and Road have been put on display in more than 20 countries along the Belt and Road in recent years. Thank you.

Hong Kong Ta Kung Wen Wei Media Group:

What measures have been taken and what progress has been made in integrating core socialist values with the development of rule of law?

Xia Weidong:

You have raised a very relevant question.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress, a prominent aspect of ideological and ethical progress has been giving full play to the complementary and reinforcing the role of rule of law and rule of virtue in national governance.

With the guidance of the core socialist values, relevant legislation, law enforcement, the judiciary and law-abiding norms are now all based on clear and consistent principles. With the support of various laws and regulations, ethical progress is supported by a strong institutional guarantee. To promote this endeavor, the Guiding Opinions on Integrating Core Socialist Values into the Development of Rule of Law was launched last December.

The supporting role of laws and regulations is also strongly valued in the various initiatives to raise the people's cultural-ethical standards. For example, the Law on National Anthem was enacted so there is a firm legal basis in paying tribute to the national anthem. The Regulations on Volunteer Services have been introduced to provide legal protection for the relevant entities. The newly-amended Advertising Law contains clear provisions on public service announcements. Many local governments have introduced regulations on civility to regulate the behavior of citizens in public. These measures have paid off in ensuring the real and effective implementation of core socialist values.

Guo Weimin:

This ends today's press conference. Thank you.

By Li Xiaohua, Wang Qian,GuoXiaohong,Chen Xia, Zhang Jiaqi, GuoYiming, Li Jingrong, Yang Xi, Wu Jin, Yuan Fang, Zhang Liying, Zhang Rui, Cui Can, Wang Wei, Li Huiru, Xu Lin, He Shan, Huang Shan, Layne Flower, Christopher Georgiou, Geoffrey Murray

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:    
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from