Contrary to popular belief and the claims of some opponents, the Chinese Communist Party seems to be growing steadily.
Interestingly, the Party has increased its efforts to keep in contact with its many thousands of foreign based members.
Will the Chinese Party exploit its thousands of foreign members for espionage and information gathering?
Will Party members working in foreign industries be asked to pass on political or technical information?
From the CPC website
The Communist Party of China (CPC) recruited 11.85 million members from 2002 to 2006, an average of 2.37 million per year, according to the organization department of the CPC Central Committee Monday.
“Departments all over the country made significant achievements in recruiting Party members from workers, farmers, intellectuals, soldiers and cadres in the last five years,” said Wang Zigui, assistant head of the China Executive Leadership Academy in Yan’an, Shaanxi Province.
Statistics from Shandong University showed that 91.9 percent of undergraduates had applied for Party membership, of whom 13.5 percent were admitted. Meanwhile, 40 percent of graduates were admitted.
The CPC had launched recruitment drives in “new social strata“, said Wang.
Figures from the organization department indicate that 2.86 million employees or employers of private enterprises and 810,000 self-employed people had been recruited by the end of 2006.
About 178,000 grassroots Party committees had been established in non- state companies by 2006, up by 79.8 percent from 2002.
“Recruitment and the establishment of Party committees in private enterprises will help broaden and consolidate the Party’s ruling foundation and be new source for long-term development,” said Prof. Liu Pingqing, an expert on the non-public economy at the Beijing Institute of Technology.
The CPC also started to establish a migrant member network both in urban and rural areas to improve the management of “migrant” Party members.
The CPC has more than 70 million Party members. Most government-related organizations have Party branches.
However, members who moved overseas or worked in private companies have difficulty maintaining connections with the Party.
Party committees have set up 8,031 hotlines to provide assistance to migrant Party members. “They can connect with the Party at any time, no matter where they are,” said Wang Zigui.