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China’s 19th National Party Congress to Begin Oct. 18

By Wu Gang
The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China will open on Oct. 18.  Above, China’s leaders gather during the closing session of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on November 14, 2012. Photo: Feng Li/Getty Images
The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China will open on Oct. 18. Above, China’s leaders gather during the closing session of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on November 14, 2012. Photo: Feng Li/Getty Images

China’s ruling Communist Party announced that its 19th National Congress will open in Beijing on Oct. 18, the official Xinhua News Agency reported Thursday.

The National Congress of the Communist Party of China, which takes place every five years, is expected to witness a reshuffling of the party’s Central Committee, which has nearly 400 members and alternate members.

After the multiday party congress, the Central Committee will elect the country’s top leadership, known as the Politburo.

The existing Politburo, which has 25 members, including the top leader — party General Secretary Xi Jinping, who also serves as the country’s president — announced the party congress’s opening date in a meeting on Thursday, according to Xinhua.

The Politburo meeting on Thursday stressed that the 19th National Congress will review the work of the party led by Xi in the past five years, and lay out action plans and policy guidelines that “fit the demand of the times,” reported Xinhua.

Xi was elected party leader in the 18th National Congress in Novemeber 2012, and the country’s president in March 2013.

A total 2,300 delegates elected from 40 electoral units, including provincial-level areas, the military, government agencies and state-owned enterprises, will gather in Beijing in October to vote for the party’s Central Committee and the top anti-graft body, the Central Commission for Disciplinary Inspection.

The number of National Congress delegates will be 30 more than the previous term. The party’s organizational department said late last year that the additional quota will be used to better represent party members from the “front line,” or the grass-roots occupations like workers, farmers, and specialists of various trades.

Contact reporter Wu Gang (gangwu@caixin.com)

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