Op-eds

China Has New Leaders. What Now? Op-Ed by Prof. Brookfield in The Diplomat

The Diplomat

Well, it’s official. The Chinese Communist Party’s new Politburo Standing Committee (PSC) will consist of seven individuals. Listed in order of seniority, they are: Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, Li Zhanshu, Wang Yang, Wang Huning, Zhao Leji, and Han Zheng.

With President Xi Jinping (now 64 years old) and Premier Li Keqiang (62 years old) continuing on from the previous PSC, the new line up brings five new faces into China’s highest policy making body.

Who Are the Five New Members?

Li Zhanshu has been director of the General Office of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) since August 2012. Before that, he was Communist Party secretary of Guizhou (2010-2012) and governor of Heilongjiang (2007-2010). He was born in August 1950, and is 67 years old.

Wang Yang has been a vice premier of the PRC since March 2013. Before that, he was Communist Party secretary of Guangdong (2007-2012) and Party secretary of Chongqing (2005-2007). He was born in March 1955, and is 62 years old.

Wang Huning has been director of the Party’s Central Policy Research Office since November 2002, and over the past two decades has served as a key advisor to Jiang Zemin, Hu Jintao, and Xi Jinping. He was born in October 1955, and is 62 years old.

Zhao Leji has been head of the CCP’s Organization Department since November 2012. Before that, he was Communist Party secretary of Shaanxi (2007-2012) and Party secretary of Qinghai (2003-2007). He was born in March 1957, and is 60 years old.

Han Zheng has been the Communist Party secretary of Shanghai since November 2012. Before that, he was mayor of Shanghai (2003-2012). From September 2006 to March 2007, he also served a short stint as Shanghai’s acting Party secretary. He was born in April 1954, and is 63 years old.

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