Established in 2009, the Global Chinese Media Cooperative Union (GCMCU) claims that its goal is to enhance the overall level and influence of overseas Chinese media by promoting interaction and resource sharing in coordination with “mainstream” Chinese media — referring to state-controlled media such as CNS, Xinhua, China Daily, CCTV, the People’s Daily, and so on. The forum has also claimed to be aimed at improving the conditions for the survival and development of overseas Chinese-language media and enhancing the overall level and influence of overseas Chinese-language media.
However, in its public statements through its Beijing-based official website, the GCMCU clearly states its mission to support official Chinese Communist Party agendas, such as the “Belt and Road” initiative and the notion of the “Chinese dream,” and to “rationally guide the public opinion of ethnic Chinese.” A July 2021 article on the site attributed to Chen Guoli (陈国利) argued that Chinese-language media overseas could support the official state media in reaching global audiences as these media faced pushback from Western countries. “Western societies reject official Chinese media, which makes it very difficult for Chinese media to ‘go out,” Chen wrote. “So overseas Chinese media can play an important role in communication and coordination, helping Chinese mainstream media enter Western societies.” In this context, the word “mainstream” refers specifically to Party-state media in China.
In the past, honorary chairmen of the “union” have included prominent PRC government officials and media executives, such as Zhao Yang (赵阳), the deputy director of the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council, Zhang Xiaoqing, Executive Chairman of Evergreen Group (常青集团), and Liu Changle (刘长乐), the chairman of Hong Kong-listed Phoenix Satellite Television.
A list of the GCMCU’s supposed members, which has not been confirmed, is available in Chinese on the union’s website, with an interactive map feature.