Party Congress

Chinese President Xi Jinping gestures after the 29th APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting (AELM) during the APEC 2022 in Bangkok, Thailand, 18 November 2022. (Rungroj Yongrit/Pool via Reuters)

The Real Xi: Reflections on the 20th Party Congress

Vienna-based Li Ling observes that while it seems that Chinese President Xi Jinping has removed all obstacles to his rule, actually the outcomes of the 20th Party Congress has shown another side of him: a level-headed and even disciplined man who can act in a measured and controlled fashion. Being able to show restraint while holding on to great power will be a delicate balance that one has to strike in Xi’s “new era”.
In this file photo taken on 19 October 1992, General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party Jiang Zemin applauds in Beijing during a press unveiling to introduce new members to the standing committee of the poliburo. (Mike Fiala/AFP)

Jiang Zemin who deepened China's reform and opening up dies at age 96

Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan presents the life and achievements of Jiang Zemin, following his passing at the age of 96. While he was seen as not having enough heft on his own when he first began as CCP general secretary, he had chalked up various achievements by the end of his tenure and graceful exit.
People walk along a main shopping area during the Alibaba's Singles' Day shopping festival in Shanghai, China, 11 November 2021. (Aly Song/Reuters)

China’s economic outlook is not bleak

China’s 20th Party Congress signalled that the government is focused on dual circulation, in particular domestic circulation. However, that does not mean that China has the intention for implementing a closed-door policy. In fact, a healthy domestic circulation will boost China's ecosystem for innovation and growth and help China further open up.
New Politburo Standing Committee members Xi Jinping, Li Qiang, Zhao Leji, Wang Huning, Cai Qi, Ding Xuexiang and Li Xi arrive to meet the media following the 20th Party Congress of the Communist Party of China, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 23 October 2022. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

Unlike Taiwan, mainland China lacks top women leaders

Taiwanese academic Chang-Ling Huang explains the importance of gender quota laws in pushing forward women’s representation in politics, observing that while China and Japan have had poor women political representation, Taiwan has managed to be a bright spot in East Asia.
China's President Xi Jinping and China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi attend the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on 16 November 2022. (Willy Kurniawan/AFP)

China's 'international united front' diplomacy: When staying neutral means a win for China

Taiwanese academic Chiung-Chiu Huang explains the concept of China’s “international united front” strategy which remains a guiding principle today. By using this softly-softly approach that seeks common ground and low-hanging fruit, China has managed its relations with countries it deems not outrightly hostile. In doing so, it may not win friends, but it may at least make fewer enemies.
Chinese President Xi Jinping arrives to meet the media following the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 23 October 2022. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

The most destabilising factor with the whole of China united under Xi

Taiwanese academic Wen-Hsuan Tsai attributes the demolition of the Youth League faction after the 20th Party Congress to Xi's belief that the Communist Youth League should focus on grassroots youth work and unite Chinese youths under the party and the leader. With the whole of China's society united, what could be the most destabilising factor?
Chinese President Xi Jinping meets the media following the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 23 October 2022. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

With a tight rein on power, does Xi have to follow his own rules in China?

With the installation of those close to Chinese President Xi in the CCP’s Politburo Standing Committee and other factional groups practically eliminated, it is no longer useful to construct new factions based on autobiographical information. It could even be said that Xi now does not even have to follow his own rules.
A health worker takes a swab sample from a man to test for the Covid-19 coronavirus in the Huangpu district in Shanghai on 24 October 2022. (Hector Retamal/AFP)

No end to China’s zero-Covid in the short term

China’s stock markets rose following an unverified tweet on 1 November claiming China might ease its zero-Covid policy. However, signals from state media and various local governments suggest otherwise and the market rally has died down as well. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong examines the clues and analyses what might happen next.
People read a newspaper covering the 20th Party Congress of the Communist Party of China at a public display stand in Beijing, China, 24 October 2022. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

Xi's CCP practises Leninism of the 21st century. But could it end up as empty talk?

East Asian Institute senior research fellow Lance Gore observes that “Xi Jinping Thought” is really Leninism of the 21st century, or an amalgam of dictums that bear the risk of stifling social vitality and creativity. Not only that, a high concentration of power is a strength but also a weakness if cadres are afraid of deviating from the views of “the great leader”.