General Zhang Qinsheng, Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, recently spoke with Study Times, a newspaper published by the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, sharing his perspectives on China’s strategic opportunities for development. Excerpts are as follows:
Study Times: How to understand "China remains in an important period of strategic opportunities for its development" written in the report to the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC)?
Zhang Qinsheng: It has three levels of meaning. First, the basic circumstances shaping the strategic opportunities for China’s development remain unchanged. Second, we must identify factors with impact on China’s development opportunities amid changes of international situations, and try to win opportunities by fending off unfavorable changes. Third, the CPC Central Committee should concentrate all its efforts on ensuring the realization of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020 by making full use of these opportunities.
What are connotations of the concept of "strategic opportunities for development?"
From the perspective of history, strategic opportunities for development, which do exist in reality, do not only favor one country or a certain group of countries. Different types of countries, large or small, landlocked countries or maritime powers, all have their own strategic opportunities. Historically, such occasions include improvement in the means of production in the agricultural society, development of maritime skills during the Age of Discovery, productivity growth during the Industrial Revolution and the ongoing information revolution. Almost all strategic opportunities appeared in the company of industrial restructurings and the development of productivity. Thus, these changes present equal opportunities to all countries and nations. Countries that can take advantage of these opportunities would develop their strength while those that miss out on these opportunities would lag behind other countries.