Feb 24, 2017 04:56 PM

NDRC Deputy Named Agency’s New Leader

(Beijing) — A deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has been appointed to replace Xu Shaoshi as the head of the agency, China’s top government economic planner.

He Lifeng’s appointment was given the seal of approval by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress at a Friday session. The Standing Committee runs the top legislative body between sessions.

He’s predecessor, Xu Shaoshi, stepped down this month at the age of 65 after five years at the agency. It’s not clear what Xu’s next move will be.

Since becoming a deputy director of the NDRC in June 2014, He was notably responsible for projects linked to the “One Belt, One Road” initiative, designed to strengthen China’s economic ties with countries in Asia and Europe.

He told state media outlets in January that the NDRC and multiple other central government agencies had worked out a set of rules for projects to be launched in countries along the “Belt and Road” via the so-called Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mechanism.

His career overlapped with many of the 17 years the President Xi Jinping spent in Fujian province, first as a vice mayor of Xiamen in 1985, and then as provincial governor in 2000. Xi left Fujian for the eastern province of Zhejiang in 2002.

He, 62, started working in Fujian as a low-ranking official in Xiamen’s special economic zone in August 1984 after graduating with a master’s degree in fiscal policy from Xiamen University. He rose through the ranks in the coastal city, becoming a vice mayor of Xiamen in December 1993.

Beginning in 1995, He spent the next 10 years in Quanzhou, a city also in Fujian province, and Fuzhou, the provincial capital, as Quanzhou’s major and party secretary and Fuzhou’s party secretary.

He returned to Xiamen in May 2005 to serve the city’s party secretary and later the head of the city’s legislature until April 2009, when he was transferred to the northern port city of Tianjin.

He was appointed as a deputy director of the NDRC in June 2014.

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