ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
China to complete leadership transition phase
Publication Date : 14-03-2013
China will complete the last leg of its once-in-a-decade power transfer by unveiling its new top leaders from today to Saturday.
First, the National People's Congress (NPC) will elect Xi Jinping as President. It is the country's highest post, though a largely ceremonial one unlike his other hats as the Communist Party general secretary and Central Military Commission (CMC) chairman, which he assumed at the 18th Party Congress last November.
Today, over 2,000 NPC delegates will also elect Xi as chairman of the State CMC, which has the same members as that of the party's CMC, the country's highest-level military council.
Delegates will also elect the new Vice-President - either ex-organisation chief Li Yuanchao or ex-propaganda czar Liu Yunshan - and the new NPC leadership, which is set to be led by outgoing Vice-Premier Zhang Dejiang.
Tomorrow, the post of Premier, which has to be nominated by the state President, will go to Li Keqiang, ranked second in the Communist Party's apex Politburo Standing Committee (PSC).
The new Chief Justice could be Hunan party boss Zhou Qiang, 53.
Things will get exciting on Saturday with the unveiling of the State Council, or Cabinet.
Barring surprises, the Executive Vice-Premier will be ex-Tianjin party boss Zhang Gaoli. The three incoming Vice-Premiers could be State Councillors Ma Kai and Liu Yandong, and ex-Guangdong chief Wang Yang.
The Communist Party's top researcher Wang Huning may be one of the five State Councillors, alongside likely new Defence Minister Chang Wanquan; Cabinet secretary-general Yang Jing; and Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun.
Another State Councillor could be Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, who will oversee foreign policy.
His successor at the Foreign Ministry is widely believed to be Taiwan Affairs Office head Wang Yi. Central bank chief Zhou Xiaochuan may stay in his job despite busting the age 65 limit for ministerial posts.