An Interview with NPC Deputy Xiong Xiaodong
On March 3, 2018, the first session of the first session of 13th National Committee of the CPPCC was held in Beijing, which marked the beginning of "two sessions – NPC & CPPCC" in Beijing. Ms. Xiong Xiaodong, deputy chief planner and head of the production and operation department of our institute, was elected as the representative of the 13th National Peoples Congress. She arrived in Beijing on March 2 together with the Guangdong delegation to participate in this National Peoples Congress.
Deepest feeling: "gratefulness, gratitude and perception”
During the stay of about twenty days in Beijing, Xiong Xiaodong has participated in 8 times of the general sessions for, 13 times of the plenary session of Guangdong delegation, and 8 times of the group meetings. With respect to what she saw, heard and thought during this period, she summarized her own personal feelings with three words -- “gratefulness, gratitude and perception”.
This is the first time for Xiong Xiaodong to be elected as the NPC deputy. Speaking of her "new identity," Ms. Xiong first expressed her deep thanks. "First of all, I would like to thank the Provincial Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development for their trust and support so that I would be so honored to be elected as the NPC deputy of the 13th National Peoples Congress. At the same time, I would like to thank the office leadership and personnel department for their guidance and assistance in preparation for the election. For Ms. Xiong, the participation of the two sessions is not only an unusual political experience, but also an great opportunity to enhance her political consciousness, so that she can possess a more comprehensive perspective in considering issues. Standing on the platform of the National Peoples Congress, she was privileged to participate in and witness the election of the new state leaders, the issuance of the work report of “the people’s government and people’s court and peoples procuratorate”, the amendment of the Constitution, the issuance of new supervision law as well as the important deliberations and voting including the reform of the state institutions and so on. What is particularly unforgettable is that representatives of the Guangdong delegation were warmly received by General Secretary Xi and they listened to the important speeches by the general secretary, and they perceived the leadership manner of a great power ever closely.
In order to better perform the duties of the NPC deputies, Xiong Xiaodong still spared time to look up the information of all aspects despite of her busy working schedule. Under the guidance of the leaders of Provincial Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and relevant departments, she raised the working proposals of three aspects, namely “the construction management, talent cultivation, and capital investment in the rural revitalization” by combining with the current status of urban planning in Guangdong Province. In addition, she put forward the opinions and suggestions on the planning report of the National Development and Reform Commission from the professional point of view. Two pieces of her submitted opinions were emphasized and one of which was included in the report finally voted.
"Thanks to the twenty days of participation, learning, and communication, I have perceived and firmly believe that only the Chinese Communist Party can lead the Chinese people to build the country into a strong, prosperous, democratic, civilized, harmonious and beautiful socialist modernized country." Xiong Xiaodong summed up her travelling to Beijing as above.
Most unforgettable: General Secretary Xi Jinping participated in the deliberation of the Guangdong delegation
On the morning of March 7, General Secretary Xi Jinping attended the deliberation of the Guangdong delegation. The short two-hour meeting became the most unforgettable part of Xiong Xiaodong in her experience of “two sessions”.
In the morning, a total of eight representatives from the Guangdong delegation made the speech. According to the recall of Xiong Xiaodong, "the general secretary showed an amazing memory as he could accurately memorize the speech by every representative." For the speech of each deputy, the general secretary would make his comment, especially the topics including the Internet innovation of Guangdong, the attraction of overseas high-end talents, the establishment of the innovative mechanism, the development of military and civilian science and technology, grass-roots party construction, and rural revitalization and so on. After listening to the speech by the representatives of the rural grassroots, the general secretary emotionally recollected his scenes in the 1970s when he was in Hailufeng and his frequent travelling in Guangdong due to geographical reasons during his working for the past ten years in Fujian. Each and every word by the general secretary fully reflected his deep feelings for Guangdong. In particular, after listening to the speech by the migrant workers came from the countryside to the city, the general secretary cordially inquired about the living of the representatives in the city, and mentioned the difficulty of migrant workers working in the city and the hardships of the countryside caretakers. He put forward that we should rejuvenate the countryside, cultivate peasant entrepreneurs and make fresh contributions to the countryside.
After listening to the speech, the general secretary fully affirmed the development achievements in Guangdong since the partys 18th National Congress and pointed out that the fundamental way to enter a new era and create a new situation in Guangdong is to rely on reform and opening up. The general secretary propose “four forefronts of the nation” by combining with the actual situation in Guangdong, namely, to lead the nation in the establishment of a mechanism that promotes high-quality economic development, to lead the nation in the construction of a modern economic system, and to lead the nation in the formation of a comprehensive and open new pattern as well as to lead the nation in building a joint construction, governance and sharing social governance structure.
Most inspired by: discussion and exchange with the representatives of the province
At the two sessions, the focus of the Guangdong delegation was mainly on the strategy for rural revitalization and the construction of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area. Delegates fully exchanged their opinions and believed that it is necessary to promote the formulation of rural development plans and clarify the contents in the aspects such as institutional supply, institutional reforms, staffing, and policy guarantees, etc. By supporting the establishment of a national-level seed industry innovation center in Guangdong and accelerating "Internet Plus" agricultural development, the agricultural information points shall be set up in each village. With the formulation of medium and long-term plans to support the development of new agricultural industry, and the improvement of the incentive mechanisms for rural personnel, the issue that the talents cannot be kept in rural areas shall be solved from the policy level. The integration of funds for agriculture and guidance of the social capital in rural construction shall be comprehensively implemented.
In terms of the construction of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, the delegates proposed to take full advantage of the supervision of ports, airports and special areas within the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area so as to make it a bridgehead connecting “the Belt and Road”. The central enterprises and other state-owned enterprises shall be promoted to set up international headquarters in Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, and introduce supporting policies to attract the set-up of regional headquarters by the large foreign companies, and to promote the construction of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area into the Bay Area of Science and Technology that rivals the US Silicon Valley and to play a greater role in "the Belt and Road" initiative. By including the railway construction into the planning of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, the integration of high-speed rail and the Internet can be promoted to facilitate the coordinated development of the Guangdong region and give play to the role of radiation and driving in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area.
During the two sessions, in addition to fulfilling her own duties, Xiong Xiaodong also seized the opportunity to communicate with other representatives from various provinces and cities, especially members of the Guangdong delegation. “It is an excellent opportunity for delegates to meet together during the sessions. As the saying goes, standers-by see more than gamesters. We can take this opportunity to exchange ideas with and learn from other representatives for any problems encountered and the improvement measures in the town planning work” indicated by Xiong Xiaodong.
Xiong Xiaodong was greatly benefited from the feedback from the representatives. She said that one of the representatives sharply pointed out the main problems of the current rural planning in Guangdong: First, respect shall be shown for the original terrain, but the rural custom and townscape of Lingnan characteristics were not retained; Second, the language of the planning is too textual, and the planning should be made understandable to farmers, and the village rules and regulations of the past shall be praised; Third, each village must have its own characteristics. We must pay attention to the embodiment of the characteristic village culture instead of the stereotyped style.
In addition, the exchanges with other representatives also gave greatly inspired her in the future work of the provincial housing and construction system. Xiong Xiaodong proposed that the emphasis shall be laid in the leading role of the construction of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area in the areas of eastern, western and northern parts of Guangdong in terms of the bay area construction. The key research shall also be conducted in aspects including industry and infrastructure facilities, and so on. Moreover, researches can also be conducted in three major sectors including the core section of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, the marine economic belt sector of eastern and western Guangdong and the ecological sector of northern Guangdong.
With regard to the revitalization of rural areas, we must emphasize the practice and implement seriously. For the governance plan that has already been completed, it is necessary to guide the construction and management of operations, so as to achieve the “effective governance” proposed by General Secretary Xi in the rural strategy. Meanwhile, the reform exploration of rural planning research shall be conducted and formulate the planning understandable and implementable by farmers.