Do you ever wonder how the government of China manages over 1.3 billion people with varying needs and different educational levels? The answer lies in the numbers. Abacus was invented by China. Chinese people or Chinese friends that you know are typically very good in mathematics. Even in masters or professional courses, it is worth noting that Chinese students excel in computational subjects such as accounting, finance or advanced math and did poorly in subjects where one has to bluff your way through talking such as marketing, law or audit.
After reading the Governance of China IV book by President Xi Jinping, it became more obvious that successful governance of a huge population lies in the numbers. By success, it means making everyone relatively prosperous and getting people out of absolute poverty. The numbers makes it effortless for those at the lower ranks of the government hierarchy to comprehend what is needed to be done. These act as terms of reference to link back to when faced with dilemmas or disputes, too.
The Apex by the Numbers
At the very top, we have 4 principles of Communist Party (CPC) founding, 5 sphere integrated plan for building socialism with Chinese characteristics, 4 pronged comprehensive strategy to achieve moderate prosperity in China in all aspects. Who said the Chinese do not like #4! The 4s do not end here. There are 4 consciousnesses to maintain political commitment, 4 spheres of confidence to have in socialism with Chinese characteristics. We also have 4 socialist values that underpin the nation, 4 more values that underlie the individual conduct and 4 principles in promoting common prosperity for all!
Disaster Management by the Numbers
Even for post Covid economic and social development, there are 8 strategies to promote the well being of the State. During the recovery period, we have to stabilise the 6 fronts and guarantee the 6 priorities to the people.
The Numbers Relevance for the New China
For the new development stage, there are 6 priorities in creating new development dynamic, 13 new development philosophies and 3 approaches to implementing these development philosophies. Even the Chinese military got 3 steps on how to modernise. There are also 10 ways to implement a holistic approach to national security.
There are 5 specific ways for China to pursue high quality development, 7 ways to develop the digital economy and 5 methods of resolving issues in the new development stage.
Numbers in the Soft Core
The numbers are not forgotten in the culture, social and environmental arenas either. China has 6 principles of human rights, 11 socialist rules of law to provide sound legal guarantees, 4 ways to increase cultural confidence of the nation, 5 expectations for writers and artists to create prospects for literature and arts, 8 ways to build a strong public health system and 7 means to develop the social security system.
To create harmony between development and nature, the government stated 5 ways to balance the two. For carbon neutrality, there are 4 relationships to balance. The harmony between humanity and nature can be achieved by following 6 strategies.
Corruption itself is viewed in abhorrence and 5 reasons for why it has to be that way is also defined. To keep abreast of the developed world, China needs talent and how to develop talent has also been pointed out by the government in 8 ways.
Last but not least, 7 malpractices committed by government officials has been stated as well as 8 rules for officials to improve their work performance.
I believe I am having 2 headaches now, by just looking at these numbers!