I. The essence of the multi-party cooperation and political
The multi-party cooperation and political consultation under the
leadership of the Communist Party of China is a basic political
system in China.
The system means that the CPC is the only party in power in the
People's Republic of China while under the precondition of
accepting the leadership of the CPC, the eight other political
parties participate in the discussion and management of state
affairs, in cooperation with the CPC.
Political consultation means that under the leadership of the CPC,
all parties, mass organizations and representatives from all walks
of life take part in consultations of the country's basic policies
and important issues in political, economic, cultural and social
affairs before a decision is adopted and in the discussion of major
issues in the implementation of the decisions.
Political consultation takes the organizational form of the Chinese
People's Political Consultative Conference.
Political consultation is the most important political and
organization form of the multi-party and political consultation
Cooperative relations between the CPC and other political parties
are based on the principle of "long-term coexistence and mutual
supervision, treating each other with full sincerity and sharing
weal or woe."
II. Political parties participating in the discussion and
management of state affairs
This refers to the eight political parties other than the CPC.
These parties are those established before the founding of the
People's Republic of China in 1949, which were then dedicated to
the realization of a bourgeois republic in China and supported the
CPC in the latter's effort of overthrowing the rule of the
Kuomintang. They are independent in organization and enjoy
political freedom, organizational independence and legal equality
under the Constitution.
1. China Revolutionary Committee of the Kuomintang
Officially founded on January 1, 1948, its main constituents at the
time were former Kuomintang members for democracy and other
patriotic personages. Their political stand was to overthrow the
dictatorial rule of the Kuomintang and realize independence,
democracy and peace in China.
Its Constitution revised in November 1988 stipulates that its
political program at the present stage is to lead all party
members, unite patriots living in China and residing abroad in
favor of the unification of the motherland to strive for the
unification and rejuvenation of China, under the guidance of the
basic line for the primary stage of socialism.
Its members come from mainly four areas: those with relations with
the Kuomintang, those with relations with people of all walks of
life in Taiwan, those dedicated to the unification of the
motherland and others. The party mainly draws members from
representative people and middle-level and senior intellectuals.
By the end of 1997, the party had a membership of 54,000 and He
Luli is its chairwoman.
2. China Democratic League
First established in November 1939, it took its present name in
September 1944. At the time, it was a united political organization
consisting of political parties and forces favoring the middle road
In 1997 it adopted a constitution which stipulates that its program
is to hold high the banner of patriotism and socialism, implement
the basic line for the primary stage of socialism, safeguard
stability in the society, strengthen services to national unity and
strive for the promotion of socialist modernization, establishment
and improvement of a market economy, enhancement of political
restructuring and socialist spiritual civilization, emancipation
and development of productive forces, consolidation and expansion
of the united patriotic front and realization of the grand goals of
socialism with Chinese characteristics.
China Democratic League is mainly made up by middle-level and
senior intellectuals in the fields of culture, education, science
and technology. It has a membership of 157,000 and its chairman is
3. China Democratic National Construction Association
It was established on December 16, 1945. Its political stand at the
time was to guarantee the basic political rights and human rights
of citizens, protect and develop national industry and commerce and
oppose the dictatorial rule of the Kuomintang.
Its present constitution calls for the implementation of the CPC's
policy of focusing on economic construction, acceptance of the
leadership of the CPC, persisting in the tradition of
self-education, adhering to the principle of democratic centralism
and carrying out the policy of multi-party cooperation and
political consultation. Most of its 90,000 members are
representative figures in the economic field. Its chairman is Cheng
4. China Association for the Promotion of Democracy
When it was founded on December 30, 1945, it was made up mostly by
people engaged in education and publishing and patriotic figures in
industry and commerce in Shanghai who stood for promotion of
democracy and reform of the political power. It called on the
Kuomintang to return the political power to the people, the
establishment of a united and constitutional government.
Its program drawn in 1988 stands for the promotion and improvement
of socialist democracy, improvement of a socialist legal system,
uplifting of the qualifications of the people, development of
productive forces and turning China into a prosperous, culturally
developed, democratic, strong and modern socialist country.
The association is mainly made up by representative intellectuals
in the fields of education, culture, publishing and science. It had
a membership of 99,000 at the end of 2005 and its chairman is Xu
5. Chinese Peasants' and Workers' Democratic Party
Founded in August 1930, its main political program was to oppose
the dictatorial rule of the Kuomintang and establish the power of
Its present program includes the stand to accept the leadership of
the CPC, adhere to multi-party cooperation and political
consultation, practice democratic centralism and safeguard the
rights and interests of party members and associated intellectuals.
It now has a membership of over 80,000 and its chairman is Jiang
6. China Zhi Gong Dang
China Zhi Gong Dang was founded in San Francisco, October 1925 by
overseas Chinese organizations in North America.
According to its constitution, the party is made up mainly by the
middle and upper levels of returned overseas Chinese and their
relatives. Its job is to assist the CPC and the Chinese government,
consolidate and develop political stability, safeguard the rights
and interests of party members and associated returned overseas
Chinese and their relatives, reflect their opinions and demands and
practice democratic centralism.
It had a membership of nearly 16,000 at the end of 1997 and its
chairman is Luo Haocai.
7. Jiusan Society
When it was first established in May 1946, its political stand was
to carry on the tradition of democracy and science, oppose the
civil war and practice democratic politics.
The present program of Jiusan Society stipulates that
organizationally, the party draws members from representative
middle and senior level intellectuals in the fields of science,
technology, higher education and medicine. It stands for the
multi-party cooperation and political consultation, democratic
centralism and the safeguard of the rights and interest of its
It has a membership of 88,000 and its chairman is Han Qide.
8. Taiwan Democratic Self-government League
It was established on November 12, 1947 in Hong Kong. At the time
it was a political organization of Taiwan residents which was
founded and existed outside Taiwan Province, sought to become free
from the rule of the Kuomintang, implement democracy and regional
self-government. In March 1949, the league moved its headquarters
from Hong Kong to Beijing.
Its present political program stands for patriotism and socialism,
uniting with league members and Taiwan compatriots and striving for
the acceleration of reform, opening up and socialist modernization
drive, safeguarding stability and unity, improvement of socialist
democracy and legal system and the realization of the peaceful
unification of the motherland and "one country, two systems".
Most of the members are representative and upper level Taiwan
compatriots living in large and medium-size cities on the mainland.
It has a membership of over 1,800 and its chairman is Lin Wenyi.
III. Major forms of the multi-party cooperative system
1. Participation in the discussion of state affairs
Under this mechanism, members of various non-communist parties take
part in the deliberation and implementation of major policies, laws
and regulations of the country, take part in the consultation on
major political issues and the choice of leaders of the state and
take part in the running of state affairs.
Consultation between the CPC and other political parties mainly
takes the following forms:
(1) Democratic consultation. Leaders of CPC invite, usually once a
year, leaders of other political parties and representative
personages without political party affiliation to a meeting at
which CPC leaders hear and solicit their opinion on major policies
and principles that the CPC puts forward.
(2) High-level talks. CPC leaders invite leaders of other political
parties and representative personages without political party
affiliation for small-scale meetings at which they exchange
opinions on questions of common concern whenever there is a need
for such a meeting.
(3) Bimonthly meetings. Chaired by the Central Committee of the
CPC, the meetings are attended by people from other political
parties and representative personages without political party
affiliation. At these meetings, the CPC Central Committee informs
the participants of major events, exchanges views with them, relays
important documents of the CPC Central Committee and hears the
opinion and suggestions of the participants or conducts discussions
on specific topics. When necessary, there will be meetings between
the bimonthly ones.
(4) Written suggestions or exchange of views in person. Leaders of
non-communist political parties and representative figures without
political party affiliation may, at any time they wish, submit in
writing their suggestions to the CPC Central Committee on major
state policies or specific issues or they may see leaders of the
CPC Central Committee in person to exchange views.
2. Democratic supervision
Democratic supervision means that the non-communist political
parties exercise supervision on the CPC and the government organs
under its leadership, within the framework of the multi-party
cooperation and political consultation.
The supervision may be conducted in the following manners: putting
forward opinions, suggestions and criticisms to the CPC Central
Committee at the meetings of the Chinese People's Political
Consultative Conference; making known their suggestions and
criticisms on major political, economic and social issues of the
state on the basis of investigation; deputies to the NPC and
members of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference
who are members of non-communist political parties may conduct
supervision through putting forward bills, proposals and inspection
reports; and members of non-communist political parties may
exercise their supervisory role by serving as special supervisors,
inspectors, auditors and education supervisors of the government.
3. Holding government and judicial positions
All the non-communist political parties have their members holding
leading positions in the government and judicial organs at various
levels upon recommendation by the CPC.
IV. Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference
CPPCC has a national committee and regional committees.
1. Nature of CPPCC
The CPPCC is an organization of the united front with wide
representation. It is an important organ of multi-party cooperation
and political consultation under the leadership of the CPC. It is
composed of the CPC, other political parties, mass organizations,
and representative public personages from all walks of life,
representatives of compatriots of Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao as
well as of returned overseas Chinese and other specially invited
2. Function of CPPCC
The major function of the CPPCC is to conduct political
consultation and exercise democratic supervision, organize its
members from various non-communist political parties, mass
organizations and public personages from all walks of life to take
part in the discussion and management of state affairs.
(1) Content and forms of political consultation
Political consultation covers socialist material and spiritual
construction, the building of a democratic legal system, important
policies and planning of the reform and opening up program, reports
on the work of the government, national financial and fiscal
budget, economic and social development planning, major issues in
political life in the country, drafting of major national laws,
candidates for the state proposed by the CPC Central Committee,
changes in the administrative division at the provincial level,
major policies in foreign affairs, major policies in regard to the
unification of the motherland, major issues involving people's
livelihood, affairs of common interest of the political parties,
important affairs of the CPPCC and other important issues in regard
to the patriotic united front.
Political consultation takes the forms of plenary sessions,
standing committees and meetings of the chairmen of the National
Committee of the CPPCC, discussion meetings of Standing Committee
members of the CPPCC, special committee meetings of the CPC,
consultation meetings participated by people from various political
parties, representative public personages without political party
affiliation, mass organizations, ethnic minorities and patriotic
figures from different walks of life and activities of local
people's political consultative conferences at various levels.
(2) Major contents of democratic supervision
Democratic supervision covers such areas as the implementation of
the Constitution, laws and regulations of the state, implementation
of major policies formulated by the CPC Central Committee and state
organs, the implementation of the national economic and social
development plans and financial budget, the conduct of duties, law
observance, and honesty of state organs and their staff, the
execution of decisions and the regulations of the CPPCC on the part
of its units and individuals.
Democratic supervision takes the forms of plenary sessions,
Standing Committee meetings and meetings of the chairmen of the
CPPCC submitting proposals to the CPC Central Committee and the
State Council; various special committees of the CPPCC putting
forward suggestions and reports; inspection, proposal, exposing and
other forms of criticism and suggestion by individual CPPCC
members; taking part in investigations organized by the CPC Central
Committee and the State Council as well as activities organized by
local people's political consultative conferences.
(3) Main contents of taking part in and managing state
This includes organizing investigations and research of issues that
the general public is concerned with, causing the attention of the
CPC committees and departments of the State Council and which the
CPPCC is capable of doing; actively making constructive suggestions
to CPC and the government at various levels, maximizing the role of
CPPCC members and their specialty to offer suggestions and services
to the program of reform, opening up and the modernization drive.
3. Organizational principles of CPPCC
All political parties and mass organizations who support the
charter of the CPPCC may sit on the National Committee or local
committees, upon agreement by the National Committee or local
committees after deliberation.
Individuals, invited by the National Committee or the standing
committees of local committees, may also become members of the
National Committee or local committees.
The relationship between the National Committee and local
committees and between higher level committees and lower level
committees is one of guidance.
Local committees have the obligation to observe and carry out
national decisions adopted by the National Committee and lower
level committees have the obligation to observe and carry out
regional decisions adopted by the higher level committees.
All units and individuals taking part in the CPPCC have the right
to take part in political consultation, democratic supervision,
discussion and management of state affairs, through the meetings,
organization and activities of the CPPCC.
Decisions of the plenary session and Standing Committee of the
National Committee and local committees will become effective only
after the majority of the committee members has voted in their
All participating units and individuals have the obligation to
observe and carry out the decisions. In case of different opinions,
they may state their reservation on the precondition of firmly
Participating units and individuals who have seriously violated the
charter of the CPPCC or the decisions of the plenary sessions or
Standing Committee shall be disciplined by the National Committee
or standing committees of local committees including warning up to
stripping them of their qualifications for joining the CPPCC.
4. The National Committee
The number and specific candidacy of the participating units and
members of the National Committee are decided by the Standing
Committee of the outgoing National Committee of the CPPCC.
During every term of office, when it is necessary to increase or
change the number or candidacy of the participating units or
members, it is to be decided by the Standing Committee of the
present National Committee of the CPPCC.
The present National Committee is composed members of 34 units,
i.e., the CPC, China Revolutionary Committee of the Kuomintang,
China Democratic League, China Democratic National Construction
Association, China Association for the Promotion of Democracy,
Chinese Peasants' and Workers' Democratic Party, China Zhi Gong
Dang, Jiusan Society, Taiwan Democratic Self-government League,
public personages without party affiliation, the Communist League
of China, All-China Federation of Trade Unions, All-China
Federation of Women, All-China Federation of Youth, All-China
Federation of Industry and Commerce, China Association of Science
and Technology, All-China Friendship Federation of Taiwan
Compatriots, All-China Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese,
representatives from the cultural and art circles, the fields of
science, technology, social science, economics, agriculture,
education, physical culture, journalism, publishing, medicine,
social welfare, religion, and among ethnic minorities and the
circle of friendship with foreign countries, specially invited
people from Hong Kong, Macao and other specially invited personage.
The present National Committee has 2,196 members, among whom 290
are members of the Standing Committee.
The National Committee serves for a term of five years and holds a
plenary session once every year.
The National Committee has a chairman, vice chairmen and
secretary-general. It sets up a Standing Committee which presides
over the work of the National Committee.
The Standing Committee is composed of the chairman, vice chairmen,
secretary-general and members. Candidacy of members to the Standing
Committee is proposed by political parties, mass organizations, and
people representing various walks of life of the CPPCC, and elected
by the plenary session of the National Committee. The chairman of
the National Committee presides over the work of the Standing
Committee and the vice chairmen and secretary-general assist the
chairman in his (her) work.
The meeting of the chairmen is composed of the chairman, vice
chairmen and secretary-general and deals with the important aspects
of the day-to-day work of the Standing Committee.
5. Local committees
The provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under
the Central Government, cities divided into districts, counties,
autonomous counties, as well as cities not divided into districts
and districts under the jurisdiction of cities, where there are
conditions for setting up the CPPCC, shall establish proper
organizations of the CPPCC.
At present there are more than 3,000 CPPCC local committees at
various levels made up by a total membership of over half a
Local committees of the CPPCC serve a term of five years.
The composition, election, function, major working organs of local
committees and their standing committees should correspond to those
of the National Committee.