Beijing: China’s ruling Communist Party on Wednesday unveiled its new leadership, headed by President Xi Jinping, to rule the world’s second-largest economy for the next five years with no clear hint of an heir apparent, leaving room for an unprecedented third term for the 64-year-old leader.
In the most-widely watched political event telecast live across the world, Mr Xi walked in front of the national and international media, followed by Prime Minister Li Keqiang and five other new members of the Politburo Standing Committee, which will rule the country for the next five years.
Looking relaxed, Mr Xi introduced all the six members to the packed local and international media at Beijing’s massive Great Hall of the People and then spoke about his vision for China and the world.
Besides Mr Xi and Mr Li, the other members of the ruling council are Mr Xi’s chief of staff Li Zhanshu, 67, vice-premier Wang Yang, 62, leading Communist Party theoretician Wang Huning, 62, party organisation department head Zhao Leji, 60, and Shanghai party chief Han Zheng, 63.
The new faces replaced leaders who had reached an informal retirement age of 68. The age of the new leadership gives an indication that none of them could succeed Mr Xi at the next party Congress in 2022.
The announcement follows the end of the week-long Communist Party National Congress, the biggest event in China’s political calendar, which is held every five years.