‘China’s communist party deserves a lot of credit’ Mick Wallace tells party newspaper

MEP tells Global Times Chinese system of government is ‘serving interest of people’

Mick Wallace is MEP for Ireland South.  File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Mick Wallace is MEP for Ireland South. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

 

Europe should learn from China because its ruling communist party is doing a better job in serving the interests of its people, Ireland South MEP Mick Wallace has told a Chinese Communist Party newspaper.

“The reason that we can learn something from China is because Europe is not doing a great job serving the interest of its people,” Mr Wallace was quoted saying in the interview with Global Times.

“The system of the government is serving the people better whereas the system of governments in Europe is serving its business first,” he continued.

“I think we can learn lessons from China who are doing a better job in looking after the concerns of the ordinary citizens than the Europeans are doing at the moment.”

Global Times is an English-language tabloid newspaper published by the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC).

In an editorial accompanying the words from Mr Wallace, the newspaper wrote that the party, “overcoming various difficulties and challenges, has led the remarkable achievements of national construction as well as the colossal transformation of China”.

The party’s “legitimacy” and “people-centred” approach had made it into “an influential internationally renowned party”, the editorial continued. It then featured words of praise from a range of academics, former politicians, and Mr Wallace.

“The CPC has obviously played a strong role in helping so many hundreds of millions in China to move out of poverty. That’s been a remarkable achievement. It couldn’t have been done under the capitalist system,” Mr Wallace was quoted to say.

“China could not have made the same progress with a capitalist system. So the CPC deserves a lot of credits for the progress that China has made.”

The United States has recently been pushing for Europe to take a tougher line towards China, warning about its vast military build-up that has seen it develop the world’s second-largest navy and military bases in Africa.

Within the EU however there are splits over how to balance the importance of trade ties and co-operation on climate change, with pressure over issues like increasing incursions on Taiwanese airspace, the mass imprisonment of Muslims in “re-education” camps in Xinjiang, and a crackdown on freedoms in Hong Kong.

In a longer version of the interview with reporter Yu Jincui that was published earlier this month, Mr Wallace said that China should not worry about criticism from the West.

“They criticised China because they don’t want China to be doing so successful. They will criticise you anywhere if you do something well. You shouldn’t worry about them,” Mr Wallace was quoted to say.

He noted that the Chinese Communist Party was no doubt “not perfect”, but that its ability to lift people out of poverty “shows that you’re doing something right”.

“The people who have the most money in China might like things to be done different. That is a challenge to any communist system if people with a lot of money in any country become very powerful,” he warned.

“So that’s a danger that China has to be careful of. I think it’s important that China doesn’t embrace neoliberalism.”

Mr Wallace did not immediately respond to a request for comment.