International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party
AbbreviationZhonglianbu (中联部)
Formation1951; 72 years ago (1951)
TypeDepartment directly reporting to the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party
HeadquartersFuxing Road, Haidian District, Beijing
LeaderLiu Jianchao
Deputy directors
Guo Yezhou, Qian Hongshan, Shen Beili, Chen Zhou
Parent organization
Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party
SubsidiariesChinese Association for International Understanding
China Center for Contemporary World Studies
China Foundation for Peace and Development
AffiliationsMinistry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China Edit this at Wikidata
Formerly called
International Liaison Department

The International Department of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (ID; Chinese: 中国共产党中央委员会对外联络部; pinyin: Zhōngguó Gòngchǎndǎng Zhōngyāng Wěiyuánhuì Duìwài Liánluò Bù),[1] better known as the International Liaison Department (ILD), is an agency under the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party in charge of establishing and maintaining relations with foreign political parties. In addition, it gathers intelligence on and influences foreign political parties, organizations, think tanks, and academics as well being tasked with finding ways to divide potential critics.[2][3][4][5][6]


The department was established in 1951, and was tasked with overseeing relations with foreign communist parties, especially the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the socialist bloc.[7] The ILD's mandate became more important following the Sino-Soviet split, as the party began more aggressively seeking supporters for its position among communist parties operating overseas.[8] Afterwards it maintained ties between the CCP and the Maoist parties around the world, often attempting to foment revolution abroad by funneling money and resources to left-wing and rebel groups.[9][10] From 1962 through the first half Cultural Revolution, foreign relations were mainly conducted by Kang Sheng on behalf of the Politburo Standing Committee.[9]

In the 1980s under Deng Xiaoping, the ILD expanded its mission to include cultivating relations with non-communist parties, and shed its overtly revolutionary objectives. In 1981, the ILD established the Chinese Association for International Understanding.[11][12] The ILD also operates the China Foundation for Peace and Development.[13] In this era, the department sought to forge ties with "any foreign political party that was willing to meet with it."[9] With the end of the Cold War and collapse of the Soviet Union, the ILD's expanded mission of engaging with parties across the political spectrum became more important.[8] Since the early 2000s, the ILD has increased its global outreach.[5] According to scholar Anne-Marie Brady, the ILD is "tasked with gathering intelligence on foreign politicians and political parties, and developing asset relations with them."[6]

In 2010, the ILD established the China Center for Contemporary World Studies (CCCWS), a think tank serving on the secretariat of the Silk Road Think Tank Association, which aims to "enhance positive feelings" toward the Belt and Road Initiative.[14]

List of directors

Directors of the ILD:[15]

See also


  1. ^ "CPC marks 70th anniversary of its international department - Xinhua |". Xinhua. Retrieved 2022-08-12.
  2. ^ Lulu, Jichang (2019-11-26). "Repurposing democracy: The European Parliament China Friendship Cluster". Sinopsis. pp. 27–29. Archived from the original on 2019-12-10. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  3. ^ Thomas, Neil (January 22, 2020). "Proselytizing Power: The Party Wants the World to Learn from Its Experiences". Macro Polo. Archived from the original on January 23, 2020. Retrieved January 24, 2020.
  4. ^ Fitzgerald, John (October 1, 2019). "Mind your tongue: Language, public diplomacy and community cohesion in contemporary Australia—China relations". Australian Strategic Policy Institute. Archived from the original on July 10, 2020. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
  5. ^ a b Hackenesch, Christine; Bader, Julia (2020-06-09). "The Struggle for Minds and Influence: The Chinese Communist Party's Global Outreach". International Studies Quarterly. 64 (3): 723–733. doi:10.1093/isq/sqaa028. ISSN 0020-8833.
  6. ^ a b Hartcher, Peter (2020-07-13). "Rundown of China's spy agencies will make uncomfortable reading for some". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 2020-08-25. Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  7. ^ Jüris, Frank (2020-09-25). "Estonian parties in the CCP's grip: The International Liaison Department's influence activities". Sinopsis. Retrieved 2022-01-16.
  8. ^ a b Sutter, Robert (2011). Historical Dictionary of Chinese Foreign Policy. Plymouth, United Kingdom: Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Group. p. 128. ISBN 978-0-8108-6860-1. OCLC 971172812. Archived from the original on 2020-08-23. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  9. ^ a b c Brady, Anne-Marie (2003). Making the foreign serve China: managing foreigners in the People's Republic. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. doi:10.25911/5d5fccdac8aba. hdl:1885/147629. ISBN 0742518612. OCLC 52595251.
  10. ^ Directorate of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency (December 1971). "Intelligence Report: The International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on May 31, 2012. Retrieved May 28, 2012.
  11. ^ Sutter, Robert G. (2011-05-05). Historical Dictionary of Chinese Foreign Policy. Scarecrow Press. pp. 68–69. ISBN 978-0-8108-7084-0. OCLC 780605591. Archived from the original on 2020-08-23. Retrieved 2020-05-16.
  12. ^ Stokes, Mark; Hsiao, Russell (October 14, 2013). "The People's Liberation Army General Political Department: Political Warfare with Chinese Characteristics" (PDF). Project 2049 Institute. pp. 38, 78. Archived (PDF) from the original on March 14, 2019. Retrieved May 16, 2020.
  13. ^ Bandurski, David (2023-04-09). "Mixing Media and Statecraft in Latin America". China Media Project. Retrieved 2023-05-24.
  14. ^ Bigey, René (2023-05-11). "France's "influence diplomacy" under CCP influence" (PDF). Sinopsis. Retrieved 2023-05-22.
  15. ^ 宋涛接替王家瑞任中央对外联络部部长 (in Chinese). Xinhua. 2015-11-26. Archived from the original on 2015-11-27. Retrieved 2015-11-26.