The government has not fully clarified the details of the mission but it is certain that China is moving forward to space exploitation. Currently, an unmanned vehicle has landed on the dark side of the moon to gather data and conduct some additional research including analyzing the soil and rock chemistry on the unknown region. The rover can function only at night as temperatures during the day reach up to 200°C.
Moreover, astronauts were placed in two temporary space stations, Tiangong-1 and Tiangong-2 while a permanent station is going to be developed soon according to the CSNA (China National Space Administration). "China had talked previously about their lunar intentions so it’s exciting if they have at last set out a time frame. It’s an aggressive timeline, but not impossible. The architecture now being developed is more about building sustainable infrastructure to keep a human presence there," Leroy Chiao, Chinese-American former NASA astronaut, stated.
In the meanwhile, the current International Space Station (ISS) is reaching the end of its design period and there is no plan to be replaced. Therefore, China may cooperate with space involved nations, such as U.S.A., for the manipulation of the next International Space Station.
According to the administrator of the CNSA, Zhang Kejian, the research base will be established in the south pole of the moon and will be shared with more countries. The base will also be utilized as a refueling station for future space missions.
President of China, Xi Jinping, stated that the space operations will aid in developing Chinese robotics, artificial intelligence projects and aviation.
Of course, China has strong competitors when it comes to space exploitation. Russia is also planning to establish a lunar base (it's construction will begin after 2035) and U.S.A. has announced that by 2024 astronauts will be back on the moon.