Li Qiang expects to be prime minister in China, as Xi Jinping secures a 3rd presidential time period

(CNN) The nation’s political elite formally endorsed Xi Jinping’s unprecedented third time period as China’s president on Friday, cementing his management and making him communist China’s longest-serving head of state since its founding in 1949.

On Friday, Xi was reappointed as president for one more five-year time period by China’s legislature in a ceremonial vote within the Nice Corridor of the Folks in Beijing — a extremely choreographed train in political theater meant to showcase the legitimacy and unity of the ruling elite.

He acquired 2,952 unanimous votes, adopted by a standing ovation.

The reappointment of Xi, China’s strongest and authoritarian chief in a long time, was largely seen as a formality, having secured the 69-year-old president. A record-shattering third time period as CPC chairman final fall.

In China, the presidency – or “Chief of state” In Chinese language – it’s largely a ceremonial tackle. The actual energy lies within the positions of celebration chief and navy chief — two key roles that Xi additionally holds and had been reappointed at a key Communist Get together congress in October.

Nevertheless, his reappointment as head of state formally completes his transition right into a second decade in energy.

It comes amid a broader shuffle of management roles within the central authorities, or State Council, and different authorities organizations which can be growing Xi’s already sturdy grip on the levers of energy.

Li Qiang, certainly one of Xi’s most trusted protégés, is predicted to be chosen as China’s prime minister on Saturday.

Historically, the premiership is an influential position in control of the economic system, although over the previous decade its energy has been severely eroded by Xi, who has taken practically all decision-making into his personal fingers.

On Friday, the Nationwide Folks’s Congress (NPC) additionally appointed different key state leaders, together with Zhao Liji as chairman of the meeting and Han Zheng as vp of the nation.

All the newly appointed leaders took a public oath of allegiance to the Chinese language structure contained in the Nice Corridor of the Folks.

The Nationwide Folks’s Congress additionally accredited A complete plan to reform establishments below the State Councilincluding the formation of a monetary regulator, a nationwide information workplace, and the renewal of the Ministry of Science and Expertise.

The excellent reform is one other transfer by Xi to consolidate Communist Get together management over key areas of policymaking.

challenges forward

Whereas Xi has secured a agency grip on energy, he faces a myriad of challenges at dwelling and overseas.

China’s economic system is struggling to get well from three years of harsh coronavirus restrictions, investor confidence is waning, and a demographic disaster looms because the nation information its first inhabitants decline in six a long time.

China additionally faces a sequence of diplomatic headwinds from Washington and different Western capitals, as relations have soured lately over Beijing’s human rights file, navy buildup, dealing with of Covid and a rising partnership with Russia.

in Unusually direct remarks Xi on Monday accused the US of main a marketing campaign to suppress China and inflicting critical inside troubles.

“Western nations led by the US have contained and suppressed us in an all-out manner, which has introduced unprecedented critical challenges to our growth,” Xi informed a bunch of presidency advisors representing personal corporations on the sidelines of the NPC assembly.

Russian state media reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday congratulated Xi on extending his time period.

“I’m assured that working collectively, we’ll guarantee additional progress of fruitful Russian-Chinese language cooperation in varied fields,” Putin stated.

Putin additionally famous that Russia extremely values ​​Xi’s private contribution to “strengthening relations of complete cooperation and strategic interplay” between Moscow and Beijing, TASS reported.

Xi has now entered a brand new historic territory.

No Chinese language chief has held the title of head of state for greater than 10 years, together with the founding father of communist China, Chairman Mao Zedong.

Liu Shaoqi, who took over as head of state from Mao in 1959, was sacked in 1968 and persecuted to dying a yr later throughout Mao’s turbulent Cultural Revolution.

After Mao’s dying, supreme chief Deng Xiaoping launched presidential time period limits into China’s structure in 1982 to keep away from the type of chaos and catastrophe that noticed Mao’s lifelong rule.

Deng additionally led institutional reforms to attain higher separation of posts and capabilities between the celebration and the state.

Nevertheless, these efforts had been intense One thing undermined itwhich enormously expanded the celebration’s grip on energy – and its management over the celebration.

In 2018, China’s legislature abolished presidential time period limits in a ceremonial vote, successfully permitting Xi to rule for all times.

CNN’s Sandy Seidoo contributed to this report.