His ally Wang Qishan elected vice president with only one vote against. He was in charge of the fight against corruption and has experience in relations with the US. Xi Jinping consolidates his power.
Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - No surprise, but a confirmation of Xi Jinping's growing and consolidated authority, from today to the second term of office with his stalwart Wang Qishan, already leader of the powerful anti-corruption commission, at his side. The news emerges from today’s session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing, where 2,970 people unanimously elected Xi as president and - with only one negative vote – for Wang his deputy.
Wang, 69, is known as the "fireman" for his role in the fight against corruption and internal financial problems, and also has experience in dealing with the United States - as a former deputy prime minister, at the time responsible for the annual economic discussions with Washington. In his efforts against corruption, Wang was responsible for the arrest of dozens of senior officials, including security chief Zhou Yongkang.
It is likely that his appointment will result in a change from the past and that the position takes on a different emphasis from the traditionally ceremonial one. According to some sources of the South China Morning Post, Wang should deal with the dossier concerning the ambitious Chinese global project, including difficult relations with the US - just as a new trade war hangs between the two economic giants.
Xi Jinping appears more and more like the new Mao Zedong. On 11 March, the delegates to the 13th congress - including three Catholic bishops - took the historic decision to accept 21 amendments to the Chinese constitution, including the one that abolished the two-term limit for the president and vice-president, opening to a life-time mandate for Xi.