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Central Committee

The Central Committee elected by the Nineteenth Congress in 1986 included eighty-five members and sixty-five candidate members. It was a smaller body than the Central Committee elected at the Eighteenth Party Congress in 1981, which had an additional six members and six candidate members. Fifty-seven members were reelected to the Nineteenth Central Committee, eleven were promoted from candidate membership, and seventeen were newly appointed. No full members were demoted to candidate membership, but twenty-four retired, died, or had been removed. Candidate members filled the places of former Central Committee members. The number of members on the Nineteenth Central Committee was smaller than that of its predecessor, but the number of new members increased by 20 percent and of new candidate members, by 77 percent. Thus, the composition of the new Central Committee suggested trends toward reducing the size of the senior party leadership, toward adding new members, and toward initiating the newcomers through service first as candidate members.

In 1989 the Central Committee had twelve departments responsible for managing specialized functions including a general department for overseeing and coordinating party affairs. The departments supervised cadres affairs; ideological matters; party organization; military and security affairs; foreign relations; planning and budget; industry; agriculture; construction; transportation and communications; and education, science, and health. Another key body, the Party Control Commission, is subordinate to the Central Committee and is responsible for maintaining internal party discipline and for dealing with incidents that challenge party authority. There also were a Higher Party School and an Institute of Social Studies (formerly the Party History Institute), both of which had the status of a Central Committee department.

Last Update: 2010-12-07