These days, Xi Jinping is so desperate to save his power that he has given permission to different private companies in the country to form their own self-security forces on the lines of PLA, due to which many private companies have created their own security forces. Along with fighting skills, they are being taught the skills of delivering supplies and helping the army in the time of crisis or war like situation. Experts believe that Xi Jinping feared rebellion by people at many places in the country, due to which he took such a step. Along with this, questions are also being raised on the quality of the People’s Liberation Army that despite having such a big army, why is Xi Jinping preparing a private force.
According to a report by Inner Mongolia Daily Chinese dairy giant elely group formed its internal People’s Armed Forces department, on December 29th 2023 referred to as the Armed Force Department this is the first private enterprise in Inner Mongolia to establish a people’s armed forces department. Local officials including Bao Gang, secretary of the Hohhot Municipal party committee Yan Xiao Gang, political commissar of the Inner Mongolia military region and Huang Jijiang, Executive Vice Chairman of the autonomous region participated in the unveiling ceremony Huang Jijiang expressed the hope that Elely group’s Armed Forces Department would remain mindful of its responsibilities and mission leverage the political advantages and powerful influence of the party’s management of the Armed Forces and established the Armed Forces Department with the same prominence and high quality as the Elely brand. The report indicates that establishing the Armed Forces Department at Elely Group is a significant step in implementing the Xi Jinping thought on strengthening the military by the party and government of the autonomous region.
The Armed Forces Departmentrefers to the military Department established by China at the county and Township levels and in other large organizations such as state-owned enterprises and schools. It is responsible for the conscription leading local militia and managing arms depots in various locations. In border counties the Armed Forces Department may also lead active Chinese military organisationssuch as border defense battalions and Border Defense companies. The people’s armed forces department has historically played two roles as a militia providing mobilizable forces during wartime and as a monitoring and suppressing force against societal reactionary elements. As China’s economy experiences a downturn unemployment rates rise and public discontent grows, many state-owned Enterprises are reestablishing people’s Armed Forces departments internally against the backdrop of Xi Jinping’s emphasis on strong military thought. Notably, on August 1st, 2023, Guangdong Huizhou Water Affairs Group Co. Ltd, Huizhou Transportation Investment Group Co. Ltd, and Huizhou Urban Construction Investment Group Co. Ltd, officially formed people’s Armed Departments. On August 31st, Wuhan Agricultural Group also established a People’s Armed Department, emphasizing the need to align with Xi Jinping’s military strengthening ideology. The group mentioned that since early 2023 nine state-owned Enterprises in Wuhan had established similar departments.
Inner Mongolia Ming Yuo group also set up a people’s armed department, on May 26th, a few months prior in September last year Chengdu Group established a people’s armed department with the aim of “strengthening the construction of national defense reserve forces”. The founding ceremony included seven individuals on the podium, consisting of four CCP military officers and three high level executives of Shanghai Chengdu Group. On October 26th 2023, Wu Qian, Director of the Information Bureau of the Chinese Ministry of National Defense and spokesperson for the Ministry of National Defense, stated that China’s national defense is the defense of the entire nation.
The People’s Armed Department of State-owned enterprises is an integral part of the national defense system, the armed working department of the party in state owned enterprises, and the conscription agency of the government in state owned enterprises. In response to this, Feng Chongyi, a China studies scholar and Associate Professor at the University of Technology Sydney, believes that the CCP’s primary goal in re-establishing People’s Armed Departments is to eliminate potential “instability factors” that could lead to social unrest. Voice of America also quoted former Chinese Navy Colonel Yao Cheng, who pointed out that China’s move is primarily aimed at ensuring that large state owned enterprises leave no gaps. Governing the people with the people, managing regions with local forces, and preventing domestic disturbances and inadequate support in the rear during an expanded scale war.