I. Unswervingly Pushing forward the Undertaking of Combating Corruption and Building a Clean Government
Combating corruption and building a clean government is related to China's national development, the fundamental interests of the overwhelming majority of the Chinese people, social fairness, justice, harmony and stability. It is the consistent stand of the CPC and the Chinese government to resolutely punish and effectively prevent corruption, and endeavor to build a clean government.
Shortly after the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, China established state procuratorial organs, government supervisory organs and organs for discipline inspection in the CPC, and promulgated a series of laws and regulations, including the Constitution of the People's Republic of China and Regulations of the People's Republic of China for Suppression of Corruption. The system and mechanism for combating corruption and building a clean government were basically in place. In order to guarantee the purity of the new people's political power, China launched the Three-anti Campaign (anti-corruption, anti-waste and anti-bureaucracy within the Party, government, army and mass organizations) and the Five-anti Campaign (against bribery, tax evasion, theft of state property, cheating on government contracts, and stealing economic information) from the end of 1951 to October 1952. Through these measures, those guilty of bribery and corruption were seriously punished, and a clean, just and lively atmosphere was fostered.
In the late 1970s, China began to carry out the reform and opening-up policy. The reform and opening-up is a process of great social reform from a highly-centralized planned economy to a socialist market economy full of vigor, from a closed or semi-closed state to a state fully opened up to the outside world, which greatly liberated and developed the productive forces, and inspired social vigor. In this process corruption arose to some extent. Facing the new tests and challenges, China has implemented the policy of punishing corruption while making efforts to develop the economy, and carried out a series of special campaigns against such serious economic crimes as smuggling, illegal arbitrage of foreign exchange, embezzlement and taking bribes. A number of laws and regulations, including the Criminal Law of the People's Republic of China and the Criminal Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China, were promulgated, together with the establishment of auditing bodies, thus further improving the system of combating corruption and building a clean government, and exploring new ways and methods of combating corruption under the aegis of the law in the new circumstance of reform and opening-up.
In the 1990s, China started to establish the socialist market economic system. Facing rampant corruption arising in the process of system transition, China made the decision to intensify efforts in opposing corruption and established a work pattern in anti-corruption that covered three aspects, i.e., ensuring leading cadres are incorruptible and self-disciplined, investigating and dealing with all breaches of law and discipline, and rectifying malpractices in various trades and departments. It was explicitly stated that both symptoms and root causes of corruption should be addressed, with education as the basis, laws as the guarantee and supervision as the key, and the soil that breeds corruption should be continuously removed through deepening reform. A number of laws and regulations on combating corruption and building a clean government were enacted, thus further improving the anti-corruption system. Anti-corruption and anti-bribery departments, departments dealing with dereliction of duty, malfeasance and infringement of citizens' rights were set up in the procuratorial organs. Many major decisions were made in this regard, including the decision to ban anyone in the army, public security forces or procuratorial, judicial or public security organs to engage in business transactions. Reforms in the structures, mechanisms and systems were carried out regarding administrative examination and approval, financial management, cadre and personnel affairs, etc. In addition, regulations were formulated to make government work, enterprise affairs and village affairs known to the public. The work of combating corruption and building a clean government has embarked on a road that features addressing of both symptoms and root causes of corruption, comprehensive treatment and gradual intensification of efforts to eliminate the root causes.
Since the start of the 21st century, China has placed in a more prominent position the work of combating corruption and building a clean government, adopted the principle of addressing both symptoms and root causes of corruption, enforcing comprehensive treatment, giving simultaneous stresses to punishment and prevention while giving priority to prevention, and establishing the national anti-corruption strategy by setting up and perfecting a system of punishment and prevention of corruption to comprehensively promote this undertaking. In work arrangement, stress has been given to strictly investigating and punishing all violations of the law and discipline, earnestly handling problems concerning leading cadres' honesty and self-discipline, resolutely rectifying malpractices that bring damage to the people's interests, enacting and improving laws and systems on combating corruption and building a clean government, and making great efforts in promoting reforms in major areas and key links. The National Bureau of Corruption Prevention of China has been established to take overall responsibility for the anti-corruption work in all aspects. Efforts are being made to raise the ethical standards of citizens and foster a culture of integrity so as to foster values and concepts upholding integrity among the public. Such values are being promoted in rural areas, enterprises, schools, public institutions, and urban communities, and the mechanism of risk prevention and control related to combating corruption is being established. In combating corruption and building a clean government, China is more explicit in direction, clearer in thought, and more effective in measures. On the whole, it shows a good trend of development.
After constant explorations in this field, China has gained a better understanding of and accumulated rich experience in combating corruption and building a clean government, which has promoted the country's rapid economic development and social stability. According to a survey by the National Bureau of Statistics of China, from 2003 to 2010, Chinese citizens' rate of satisfaction with the work of combating corruption and building a clean government rose steadily from 51.9% to 70.6%, and the percentage of citizens who thought corruption had been kept down to varying extents increased from 68.1% to 83.8%. Moreover, the efforts China has made in this regard have got positive comments from the international community.