BEIJING, JAN. 28 -- The Chinese Communist Party, in a policy statement released today, said it will gradually free most prices and institute other market-oriented reforms, but will not tolerate any transformation to capitalism or challenge to Communist rule.

The document, approved last month at a closed-door meeting of the party's Central Committee, broadly endorses the two basic policies of market-oriented economic reform and strict political dictatorship followed since 1979 under senior leader Deng Xiaoping.

It calls for this approach to China's modernization to continue throughout the coming decade. In this way, it declares, China intends to nearly double its gross national product during the 1990s -- after more than doubling it in the previous decade -- and achieve its long-term goal of GNP in the year 2000 equaling four times that of 1980.

The document, excerpts of which were carried by the official New China News Agency, is the clearest and most authoritative endorsement of economic reform to be issued since army troops were used in June 1989 to crush demonstrations for democracy in Beijing.

In the wake of that crackdown, some observers have feared that Communist hard-liners would force a reversal of the reforms of the 1980s.