CDT has recently acquired and verified a collection of propaganda directives issued by central Party authorities to state media at the beginning of this year. These directives were issued on an almost daily basis in early 2020, and we will be posting them over the coming weeks. The following two directives were released on February 2, 2020.
Tomorrow’s (February 3) editorial broadcast meeting will be canceled. (February 2, 2020) [Chinese]
CDT Chinese editors note that this group of directives includes notices from state propaganda bureaus as well from CCTV management. The language in the above directive suggests that it represents the latter.
In accordance with arrangements for the extension of the 2020 Spring Festival holiday period, capital markets will be reopen for normal business on February 3. Please hold firmly to authoritative information published by departments such as the Securities Supervision Commission, People’s Bank of China, Ministry of Finance, China Insurance Regulatory Commission, Foreign Currency Office etc. when reporting on the reopening. Increase positive propaganda guidance efforts, report objectively and rationally on market fluctuations following the reopening, integrate international experiences and historical lessons, and make clear that although the capital markets will suffer some short-term impact from the epidemic situation, given steady progress in the comprehensive deepening of reform in A-shares, improved prospects for the market as a whole, and enhancement of market resilience, the conditions and foundation for continued development are in place, the basic situation is unchanged, and long-term trends will remain so. Do not hype topics such as the repeated delay in market reopening, and do not use terms like “black opening,” “slump,” “collapse,” “market crash,” “granary explosion,” “panic,” etc. (February 2, 2020) [Chinese]
Due to concerns from the spreading COVID-19 epidemic and amid the world’s largest annual human migration, Beijing announced on January 26 an extension of the Spring Festival holiday period, which was originally due to end on January 30. Since early in January, a steady stream of directives were aimed at information related to COVID-19, which the World Health Organization on January 30 designated a “Public Health Emergency of Global Concern,” a topic that was also controlled by censorship authorities. Guidance to maintain economic optimism—a staple of state directives to Chinese media even in healthy times—was common throughout January 2020 in the directives obtained by CDT. A directive issued on January 29 ordered the deletion of an article speculating about the possible economic impact of WHO involvement in the emerging health crisis.
Since directives are sometimes communicated orally to journalists and editors, who then leak them online, the wording published here may not be exact. Some instructions are issued by local authorities or to specific sectors, and may not apply universally across China. The date given may indicate when the directive was leaked, rather than when it was issued. CDT does its utmost to verify dates and wording, but also takes precautions to protect the source. See CDT’s collection of Directives from the Ministry of Truth since 2011.