Chapter VI National Defense Mobilization and Reserve Force Building

China adheres to the principle of having all people engaged in national defense with an aim at giving full play to the overall advantages of the present-day people's war so as to promote the national defense mobilization and reserve force building on the basis of the overall national strength.

Mobilization of National Economy

As an important component of the national defense building and economic construction, China's economic mobilization follows the strategic thinking of soldiers and the people being the foundation for victory and the strategic concept of the people's war.

The mobilization of national economy refers to activities which improve, in a planned and organized way, the emergency reaction capabilities of national economy for national security. In peacetime, as an important measure to build up the economic potentials for national defense and to cope with contingencies, the mobilization of national economy balances the proportion of the permanent power of the defense economy to the national economy, and constitutes a powerful deterrence to war. In wartime, the mobilization of national economy is an important guarantee to transfer the national defense economic potentials into national defense capabilities to win the war by way of a rapid and orderly shift of the national economic system from a peacetime state to a wartime state. The mobilization of national economy includes mobilizations in the areas of industry, agriculture, communication and transport, post and telecommunications, science and technology, medical care and health, urban construction, commerce and trade, and finance. The capacity to mobilize national economy is an important indicator of the level of both national defense modernization and the overall national strength.

Under the leadership of the State Council and CMC, the PRC Development and Reform Commission is responsible for the mobilization of national economy. The National Economy Mobilization Office is the administrative organ which is primarily responsible for: organizing and implementing the mobilization of national economy throughout the country; coordinating relations between the military and economic work, between government organizations and military systems and between the Central Government and the local governments in the process of mobilization; properly combining peacetime needs with wartime needs and integrating military purposes with civilian ones in the development of national economy; improving the mechanism for mobilization of national economy and the capabilities to shift from peacetime to wartime footing. All services and arms of the PLA and all military area commands as well as the ministries and commissions concerned under the State Council along with all provinces (including autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government) have set up corresponding offices for mobilization of national economy.

China initially established a system for mobilization of national economy after the founding of New China in 1949. In the 1960s and 1970s, China undertook the construction of mobilization of national economy with preparations against war as the primary task. In the 1980s, the national economy mobilization began transformation in four fields: transformation from purely serving the war demands to serving both national defense and economic construction, focusing on the combination of both military effectiveness and economic efficiency; transformation from playing a unitary administrative role under the planned economy to that of an overall regulation and control under the socialist market economy to gradually form a management mechanism using multiple means related to law, economy and administration; transformation from building the military production capacity in the pre-war state to enhancing the converting ability from peacetime production to wartime production with the emphasis on building up economic potentials for national defense; and transformation from general mobilization preparations to partial mobilization preparations with priority given to rapid mobilization against contingencies in major directions and key areas.

At the new historical stage, following the principles of combining peacetime needs with wartime needs and having military and civilian purposes compatible with each other while reserving the military capabilities in civilian potentials, China's national economy mobilization makes great progress in the construction of national economy mobilization and steadily improves the capacity of national economy mobilization by observing the principles of centralized leadership, responsibility at different levels, overall planning, construction of key projects, long-term preparations and gradual development. A three-level (central, provincial and prefectural) management system to mobilize national economy has initially taken shape with the attention paid to handling major contingencies and emergencies, thus creating conditions, in terms of system, for national economy to turn rapidly from peacetime production to wartime production. Making full use of advanced information technologies, China has initially established a digital information platform for national economy mobilization, thus improving the speed and efficiency of turning peacetime production to wartime production. The capability of national economy to turn peacetime production into wartime production in 2003 was 12.44% higher than that of the previous year. The contributions made by science and technology to national economy mobilization rose by 3.53 percentage points compared with that of the previous year.

Civil Air Defense (CAD)

As an important part of the national defense and an important aspect of the economic and social development, China's civil air defense (CAD) refers to measures and actions to mobilize and organize the Chinese people to be prepared against enemy air raids and disastrous events, and to deal with the aftermath of enemy air raids and disastrous events. Resorting to preventive means such as camouflage, cover and evacuation, and adopting measures such as emergency rescue and rush-repair, the CAD serves the purpose of securing the people's lives and property, reducing losses of national economy and preserving the war potentials. The CAD is built and managed strictly in accordance with the Civil Air Defense Law of the PRC. The CAD adopts a system of joint leadership by the people's governments and the military organs with the local people's governments and the military organs at the county level and above exercising leadership over the CAD work within their respective administrative areas. The basic task of the CAD is to organize the people in CAD building in peacetime and to organize and direct people to fight against air raids in wartime.

The CAD bases itself on making preparations against air raids under the informationalized conditions by adhering to the guideline of long-term preparation, construction of key projects and combination of peacetime footing with wartime footing. In recent years, major cities throughout the country have set up joint, streamlined and highly efficient CAD command systems. They have made their municipal anti-air-raid plans, improved their urban air defense (AD) early-warning-alarm networks, and sped up the construction of the auxiliaries to the AD protection facilities while strengthening the protection of key economic targets, the construction of evacuation areas, and the building of specialized AD contingents among the people. In some provinces and municipalities, the people's governments have organized many anti-air-raid exercises, in which the AD alarm sirens were tested. They have also carried out education in the common sense of protection in case of air raids, and conducted training in protection skills. Consequently, the people's AD awareness has been generally raised and the overall urban anti-air-raid capabilities have been noticeably improved.

The CAD actively safeguards public security based on the needs of comprehensive national security. It has continuously improved its leading organs; established emergency rescue systems; set up a unified, coordinated and highly-efficient joint-action mechanism; formulated detailed backup emergency plans; provided services for emergency rescue and disaster relief by using CAD's communication, alarm and command facilities; organized specialized AD contingents to undertake tasks entrusted by the people's governments, such as comprehensive coordination, command support, and specialized rescue and assistance in emergency rescue and disaster relief; and made every effort to set up an integrated civil defense system that combines peacetime and wartime footing, and is capable of carrying out both anti-air-raid and disaster-preventing missions. Many factories, mines, enterprises and communities have established volunteer teams for civil defense.

Mobilization of Communications for National Defense

The Chinese government attaches great importance to the mobilization of communications for national defense. Under the leadership of the State Council and the CMC, the state-level organs in charge of national defense communications are responsible for national defense communications mobilization across the country; the organs of the military area commands in charge of national defense communications are responsible for national defense communications mobilization within the areas under their jurisdiction; the organs of the people's governments at the county level and above in charge of national defense communications are responsible for national defense communications mobilization in their respective administrative regions; and the departments of the State Council in charge of communications management are responsible for national defense communications mobilization of their own industries.

In recent years, with the rapid development of national transportation and communication and the constant improvement in the informationalization of transportation and communication, China's national defense communications systems have been further improved, and the capacity to mobilize national defense communications has been greatly enhanced. Construction of the national and local infrastructure for transportation, communication and postal service is undertaken in pursuance of the principle of combining peacetime needs with wartime needs, fully taking into account the defense and military needs. Some railways, highways and ports of national defense significance are listed as key construction projects of the state. The support contingents and plans for transportation and communication have played an important role in emergency rescue and disaster relief in peacetime. In 2003, China's mileage of railways and highways in operation reached 73,000 km and 1,809,800 km respectively, including 29,700 km of expressways, and the annual volume of freight handled at the major coastal ports reached 2.01 billion tons. In railway transportation, the management of goods in transit has been informationalized, and the marshaling has been computerized. In water transportation, the positioning, tracking and control of ocean freighters have been brought into reality. In highway transportation, the positioning, tracking and control of some heavy trucks have been realized. In air transportation, real-time information processing has been realized with regard to ticket booking, departure, air routes as well as freight traffic and security monitoring. Database management has been initially implemented in terms of basic information and communications mobilization information concerning major railway stations, harbors, airports, airline companies and transportation companies.

Following the publication of the Regulations on Communications for National Defense, the State Council and the CMC promulgated the Regulations on Mobilization of Civil Transport for National Defense in September 2003, and the mobilization of civil transport for national defense has been put on the track of law. Peacetime preparations of civil transport mobilization are made in accordance with the principle of emphasizing key projects and focusing on actual effects. In this respect, the work includes the drafting of an overall plan for newly-built civil vehicles and related equipment to meet the demands of national defense, acquisition of information regarding the potentials to mobilize civil transport for national defense, and formulation of plans for national defense mobilization. Wartime mobilization of civil transport is conducted according to the mobilization order issued by the President of the state. Under special circumstances in peacetime, the mobilization of civil transport is implemented upon the decision on mobilization of civil transport made by the State Council and the CMC. All organizations and individuals possessing or managing civil transport capacity are obliged by the law to fulfill their duties and responsibilities for civil transport mobilization.

Militia Force Building

As an important component of the Chinese armed forces and the assistant and backup forces of the PLA, the militia force is an armed organization composed of the masses not released from their regular work. The militia is divided into two categories - the ordinary and the primary militia. The primary militia comprises rapid reaction detachments, infantry detachments, specialized technical detachments and detachments with corresponding specialties. There are now 10 million primary militia members throughout the country.

In recent years, based on the principle of controlling quantity and improving quality, and emphasizing key components and laying good foundation, priority has been given to the quality of the militia organizations in building the militia force while keeping its mass and universal character. Infantry detachments have been reduced, specialized technical detachments increased, and technical detachments specialized in areas of AA artillery (machine-guns), missiles, field artillery, communication, chemical defense, engineering, reconnaissance and information reinforced. Enterprises and institutions with corresponding specialties have established their militia detachments with a high technological content. Also established therein are militia detachments with specialties corresponding to different services and arms responsible for combat and logistic support, and militia support detachments responsible for fuel and other military supplies. The organizational structure of the militia force has been optimized. The scientific and technological quality of the militia force has been continuously improved, and the capability of the militia force has been apparently enhanced for rapid mobilization and operations.

The primary militia members aged 18-22 receive 30-40 days of military training. The training duration for specialized technical militia members will be extended if necessary. Upon approval by the CMC, the General Staff Headquarters assigns military training tasks to the militia throughout the country. Military training for militia members will be conducted collectively at the militia military training bases in administrative regions at the county level. In some provinces and municipalities specialized technical training centers and people's military schools have been set up.
The nationwide militia work comes under the centralized leadership of the State Council and the CMC. The provincial commands (garrison commands), military sub-commands (garrison commands) and the people's armed forces departments of counties, autonomous counties, cities and municipal districts are responsible for militia work in the areas under their respective jurisdictions. The people's armed forces departments at the level of townships, ethnic townships, towns and sub-districts are responsible for militia work in their own areas. The people's armed forces departments of enterprises and institutions, set up in accordance with relevant provisions of the government, are responsible for their own militia work. Enterprises and institutions with no people's armed forces department shall designate a department or personnel to handle their militia work.

The Suggestions on Strengthening and Improving Militia Work in Cities, jointly issued in August 2002 by the Central Committee of the CPC, the State Council and the CMC, defines the strategic status and role of the urban militia force and calls for strengthening and improving the urban militia work, so as to be prepared for winning people's wars under high-tech conditions with cities as important bases. In consideration of local conditions and wartime assignments undertaken by the militia, adjustments and reforms are steadily underway with respect to urban militia work.

Reserve Force Building

As an important component of the PLA, the reserve force constitutes the focal point of the defense reserves building. It consists of active servicemen as its backbone and reserve officers and men as its foundation. It is organized according to the PLA's unified organizational structure.

After more than 20 years of development, the reserve force has grown from purely a land force into an important composite reserve force consisting of the Army reserve, Navy reserve, Air Force reserve and the reserve of the Second Artillery Force. The reserve force adopts the system of dual leadership by the military and the local Party committees and governments. The Army reserve is under the leadership of the provincial commands (garrison commands) in peacetime, and the Navy reserve, Air Force reserve and the reserve of the Second Artillery Force are placed under the joint leadership and control of both the provincial commands (garrison commands) and the Navy, Air Force and Second Artillery Force units. The reserve force is under the command of the designated troops in active service after wartime mobilization.

Under the new historical conditions, China persists in combining the building of the reserve force with that of the armed forces in active service. China improves the quality of the reserve force while enhancing the reserves' capabilities for rapid mobilization and operations so as to build a reserve force properly sized, reasonably structured, scientifically organized and credibly effective. In recent years, the key aspects of building the reserve force have been further highlighted. Combat readiness has been enhanced and training levels have been raised step by step. Based on the wartime chain of command, training systems linked with the active PLA troops have been established, and on-base training, simulated training and network training have been conducted on a wide scale.

National Defense Education

In accordance with the National Defense Education Law of the PRC, governments and relevant departments at all levels conduct national defense educational activities of various forms to enhance the national defense awareness of the people. A favorable situation in national defense education has just arisen, in which the government attaches great importance to it, the general public provides support to it, and the people take an active part in it.

The Central Government has set up the National Defense Education Office while organs or offices for national defense education have been established accordingly in provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central Government, and in most cities and counties. Twenty-six provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government have formulated or revised their national defense education regulations. The State National Defense Education Office has organized the drafting of the national defense education program.

China conducts its national defense education mainly among civil servants, young students, militia members and reservists. National defense education is absorbed into the curricula for civil servants and Party schools of the CPC. More than 2,500 Party schools throughout China have offered courses on national defense education. Such educational forms as special lectures, Military Day on camp and short-term training programs are adopted. As a result, the awareness of government functionaries in performing national defense duties is enhanced. National defense education has been incorporated into the courses of all kinds of schools at different levels to provide students with national defense knowledge and education in patriotism. Some primary and secondary schools have also introduced activities in the form of juvenile military schools with national defense education as the theme. National defense education for the militia and reserve forces is conducted in connection with political education, intensified disciplining and military training.

In accordance with the Military Service Law of the PRC and the National Defense Education Law of the PRC, colleges, universities, senior high schools and their equivalents should develop their national defense education by linking their curricula with military training. When studying at colleges and universities, students are obliged to receive basic military training. The PLA Student Military Training Office, together with the Ministry of Education, has formulated a program to strengthen guidance on military training for students throughout the country. In 2003, some 1,100 colleges and universities and 11,500 senior high schools throughout China conducted military training as required and more than eight million students received such training.

On major holidays, commemoration days and military recruitment occasions, national defense education is conducted in all parts of China in the form of exhibitions, lectures, cultural and art performances, knowledge competitions and military summer camps. Special columns or programs in such media as newspapers, magazines, radio, TV and web pages are devoted to national defense education. There are now nine provinces and municipalities that have published newspapers or magazines on national defense education and more than 30 regions have set up websites on national defense education. With such platforms like cemeteries of revolutionary martyrs, revolutionary sites, and memorial halls and museums which can be used for this purpose, national defense education has been provided in all parts of the country with nearly 200 million people educated every year.