China’s new leadership line-up with no clear successor

China’s President Xi Jinping unveils new leadership line-up with no clear successor. Premier Li Keqiang stays on, while additions to the top echelon are Li Zhanshu, Wang Yang, Wang Huning, Zhao Leji and Han Zheng.

Given the ages of those now on the top committee, there’s no clear successor to Xi in the new leadership lineup

Xi Jinping:

The Chinese president has emerged as the country’s strongest leader for a generation, due to a corruption campaign that has seen him defeat potential rivals in the party.

He has silenced internet and media critics by cracking down on free speech and has waged a war on civil society.

He is seen elevated to the political level of Mao Tse-tung after his ideology was enshrined into the constitution.

Significance:

China’s two centenary goals — a moderately prosperous society by 2021 and an advanced socialist country by 2050 — would guide policy and political conduct in the coming decades.

Chinese investors are hoping that a stronger Xi will now be able to push through bold economic and financial reforms that will prevent the economy from a shock. Ongoing efforts for sweeping changes have been hindered by concerns about social stability and conflicts of interest.

Xi’s policies could benefit from leadership continuity. Goals such as improving the environment and transitioning the economy to a higher-value and serviced based economy will take years to see through.

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