Willy’s Corner

Regional Chief Selections Highlight Continuity in Leadership Development

China has reshuffled the party and administrative leaderships of a dozen-odd provinces and directly-administered cities in the wake of the 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress. The traits and political orientations of the new regional chiefs reflect the authorities’ priorities about seeking gradual changes while... MORE

Xi Jinping’s “Southern Tour” Reignites Promises of Reform

General Secretary Xi Jinping has lost no time in reassuring the world that his Chinese Communist Party (CCP) administration will not only persevere with reforms championed by late patriarch Deng Xiaoping but also “initiate new paths.” Shenzhen, the special economic zone (SEZ) that is synonymous... MORE

Communist Youth League Clique Maintains Clout Despite Congress Setback

The Communist Youth League (CYL) Clique headed by President and former General Secretary Hu Jintao suffered a setback in the factional balance of the Chinese Communist Party Politburo Standing Committee (PBSC) selected earlier this month. Premier-designate Li Keqiang is the only CYL Clique affiliate among... MORE

18th Party Congress Showcases Stunning Setback to Reform

The most pertinent message of the just-ended 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress has perhaps come from Premier Wen Jiabao. This is despite the fact outgoing General Secretary Hu Jintao’s 101-minute Political Report to the 18th Party Congress (hereafter Report) has dominated Chinese and international... MORE

Professionalism and Factionalism in the PLA Leadership Selection

The Beijing leadership has reshuffled the high command of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) as the military goes through its own leadership transition separate from but linked to the 18th Party Congress beginning later this week. The move, which was announced last week, has also... MORE

18th Party Congress to Showcase Rising Status of Private Business

The 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress is set to highlight the leadership’s commitment to boosting the role of the private sector. This is despite the fact that the phenomenon called guojin mintui (“state-owned enterprises advance while private firms retreat”) seems to remain unchecked. The... MORE

Finalizing the 18th Party Congress: Setting the Stage for Reform?

Vice President Xi Jinping’s “reappearance” last Saturday after an absence of two weeks signaled that preparations for the 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress, which is slated for the second half of October, were on track. Beijing is even awash with speculation that the high-profile... MORE

Diaoyu-Senkaku Crisis Tests Resilience of Beijing’s Japan Diplomacy

The late patriarch Deng Xiaoping said famously about U.S.-China relations: “There are limits as to how good—or how bad—Sino-U.S. ties can become.” Can the same be said for China and Japan? While relations between the two most powerful Asian countries have apparently been heading toward... MORE

Succession Politicking Probably Limiting Bo Family’s Punishments

The impending trial of Gu Kailai, the wife of disgraced Politburo member Bo Xilai, on murder charges says a lot about the latest developments in Chinese politics, particularly Beijing’s renewed determination to put stability and “harmony” ahead of political and legal reform. The Chinese Communist... MORE