Having turned 66 on the opening day of the party congress, Gansu native Li Xi is Guangdong Party Secretary and Politburo member of the 19th CCP Central Committee. He now has another reason for celebration as he has been appointed to the Politburo Standing Committee during the 20th Party Congress. Shortly after he was announced new Secretary of the Central Discipline Inspection Commission, China’s powerful unit in charge of graft-busting and patrolling cadres’ discipline. This makes him a key figure to make sure Xi’s anti-corruption drive will not falter, and that sticking to party guidelines and ideology is taken seriously.
Hailing from Liangdang county part of the hardship region of Gansu, Li, like many of his era were part of the last batch of young people “sent down” to do manual labor in the countryside towards the end of Mao’s Cultural Revolution. From there on he became a party cadre before attending university in Lanzhou.
Li gained a wealth of experience working as a personal assistant in the office of Gansu Party Secretary Li Ziqi, close associate of Xi Jinping’s father, Xi Zhongxun. From then on, he worked in Organization Departments at various levels in Gansu and it culminated in Li becoming CCP Secretary General of Gansu.
For the next seven years Li worked in Shaanxi province at various levels and completed an MBA at Tsinghua University. There, Li Xi also worked under current Politburo member and Xi’s ally, Zhao Leji. From there he moved to Shanghai where he became the city’s CCP Deputy Secretary.
More recently, Li was promoted to CCP Deputy Secretary and then Secretary for rust-belt province of Liaoning and was rewarded for his work with being elected a member of the Central Politburo at the 19th Party Congress, having been an alternate member in the 17th and 18th party congresses. More recently Li replaced Mr Hu Chunhua as Party Secretary for the powerhouse province of Guangdong.
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