China: Xi Jinping almost secures a third term on October 23

China: Xi Jinping almost secures a third term on October 23

Chinese President Xi Jinping, unless surprised, was set to receive an unprecedented third term at the helm of China on Oct. 23, the day after the closing date of the Communist Party Congress announced on Saturday.

Every five years, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) meets for a conclave, a major political event that the country’s leadership team of 1.4 billion must renew.

Party Secretary General Xi Jinping, who has been in power since 2012 and is also the chief of the army and President of China, is about to serve a third five-year term at the helm of the organization and thus of the country.

On Saturday, the CCP confirmed the duration of the event. “The 20th National Congress of the Communist Party will open on Sunday […] and will take place from October 16 to 22,” spokesman Sun Yeli said at a news conference.

In previous editions, the Secretary General of the PCC and his new team – the Politburo and its Standing Committee – had been introduced the day after the Congress closed.

– river speech and behind closed doors –

The introductory press conference on Saturday took place in front of two large screens. To cover the Congress, journalists have been confined to a “health bubble” since Friday as part of strict measures related to the “zero Covid” policy.

At a hotel in western Beijing, accredited journalists are subjected to a series of screening tests.

During the two-hour video conference, the speaker of the congress answered questions from the Chinese and foreign press in a well-oiled staging. No questions were asked about Xi Jinping.

“The epidemic is still here, it’s a reality to be faced,” Sun Yeli said when asked about the future of the zero-Covid policy, whose negative impact on the economy is becoming increasingly clear.

“Everyone cares deeply about China’s economic development,” he said.

“The growth rate is an important indicator, but not the only one,” he said as China is due to release its third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) figures on Tuesday, disrupted by draconian restrictions.

Starting Sunday, some 2,300 delegates selected by the various party assemblies will meet behind closed doors after a ceremony in Beijing at the People’s Palace, which dominates Tiananmen Square.

In a televised speech, Xi Jinping, 69, will take stock of the past five years and present his roadmap for the next five years.

The last speech in 2017 lasted more than three hours.


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