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Party claims big increase in members
9/10/2007 9:43

The number of Communist Party of China (CPC) members had reached 73.36 million by the end of June, an increase of 6.42 million over 2002, according to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee.

Since 2002, when the 16th National Congress of the CPC was held, the CPC has welcomed 13.16 million new members, according to the statistics.

The CPC is expected to hold its 17th national congress this month.

The statistics show nearly 4.2 million, or 31.9 percent of the new members, were women; 934,000, or 7.1 percent, were from ethnic minorities; 9.46 million, or 71.8 percent, were under 35, and nearly 6.5 million, or 49.3 percent, were grassroots people "working on the frontline" such as policemen, doctors or teachers, according to the department.

Up to 12.1 percent of the new members over the last five years had previously been recognized as model workers and 32.5 percent were college graduates.

By June 2007, the number of CPC members under the age of 35 reached 17.38 million, or 23.7 percent, and there were 38.84 million members, or 52.9 percent, between 36 and 59, the statistics show.

About 134,000 people from the "new social stratum" applied for Party membership. Some were accepted, although the organization department did not give a specific figure, and 64,000 of them are likely to join the Party soon and currently being assessed by the CPC, it said.

The "new social stratum" includes private entrepreneurs, technicians and managerial-level staff in private or foreign-funded companies, the self-employed and employees in intermediate organizations, according to the CPC.

By June 2007, 3.18 million Party members were working in private companies.

It is estimated that the "new social stratum" consists of 50 million professionals who possess or manage capital totaling 10 trillion yuan (1.3 trillion U.S. dollars), according to the United Front Work Department (UFWD) of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

The department said CPC members from the worker, farmer, intellectual, cadre and army sectors were the "basic components" and "mainstays" of the Party.

By June 2007, the Party had 7.96 million, or 10.8 percent, workers; 23.1 million, or 31 percent, farmers, herdsmen and fishermen; 21.3 million, or 29 percent, cadres, managerial staff and technical specialists; 1.6 million, or 2.2 percent, armymen and armed police; 1.95 million, or 2.6 percent, students; 13.77 million, or 18.8 percent, retired people, and 3.64 million, or 5 percent, "others", it said.

Compared with 2002, the number of private business staff in the party was up 113.4 percent, it said.

The number of women members was up 22.6 percent, ethnic minority members, up 11.6 percent, and college graduate members, up 40.8 percent, it said.

There were about 3.6 million grass-roots CPC organizations, up 142,000 over 2002, the department said.

The 17th National Congress of the CPC, to be attended by more than 2,000 delegates, will summarize past experience and lay out plan for future work. A new CPC Central Committee and a new Central Commission for Discipline Inspection will be elected at the congress.