Xi Jinping opens historic gathering . . .
The 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) kicked off in Beijing on Sunday, with some 2,300 delegates representing the party’s 97 million members gathering for a week of meetings that will determine China’s leadership and priorities for the next five years. President Xi Jinping opened the quinquennial Congress by delivering the government’s work report. He reiterated that China is operating in a complex international environment and highlighted what he views as the CCP’s victories in overcoming challenges such as eliminating extreme poverty and achieving a “moderately prosperous society.” His report also articulated the Party’s next central task: building a "great modern socialist country in all respects" by 2049.
Concerns China is concealing information about its economic woes . . .
On Monday, China’s National Bureau of Statistics, in an unusual move, delayed the release of information on a series of major economic indicators, including housing prices, trade data, and the third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) figure. The Bureau gave no reason for the delay, nor did it provide a new date when the information would be available. Analysts have speculated that the data could be worse than expected and the delay was to prevent any disruption to this week’s Congress. While some Chinese officials have stated that China’s GDP rebounded in the last quarter, the uncertainty stemming from the lack of data could affect market volatility.
Xi Jinping’s job security all but assured . . .
Later this week, the Congress is expected to grant Xi Jinping a third five-year term as General Secretary of the CCP and Chairman of the Central Military Commission. Xi’s third title, President of China, is up for renewal for a third time at the National People's Congress in Spring 2023, which would create a break from the Party’s two-term precedent. With these extensions, analysts expect continuity in China’s approaches to both domestic and international issues, such as a continued emphasis on its common prosperity and socialist modernization campaigns that prioritize socioeconomic policies. They also expect a push for more balanced economic growth and development across the country to address the various environmental and social issues that arose from the last decades of aggressive economic development.
- The Economist: No turning back for Xi Jinping
- Reuters: China's 20th Communist Party Congress: What you need to know
- South China Morning Post: 20th Party Congress