China's ruling party to meet on reform

BEIJING • China's ruling Communist Party (CCP) will hold a three-day meeting of its top officials starting tomorrow to discuss a deepening of reform, and to also likely decide on key personnel decisions ahead of a government reshuffle next month.

In a statement yesterday following a meeting chaired by President Xi Jinping, who is also head of the party, the official Xinhua news agency said the party's Central Committee would hold a plenary session from tomorrow to Wednesday.

The Central Committee is the largest of the party's elite decision-making bodies, and is made up of 204 full members and about 170 alternate members.

Yesterday's meeting, overseen by Mr Xi, discussed proposals about a deepening of reform for government bodies, which will be put to the plenum for formal approval. It did not give details of what those reforms would entail.

The statement said China needs to "further supply-side structural reform" and "deepen reform in key areas", and "boost consumption and effective investment". It also said the government "needs to maintain the continuity and sustainability of its economic policy".

China will also continue to adopt a proactive fiscal policy and a prudent monetary policy to fulfil its 2018 economic and social development goals, Xinhua added. China's economy grew 6.9 per cent last year, the first annual acceleration in economic growth since 2010.

This will be the third plenary session of the party since a party congress ended in October with a slew of new senior party posts announced.

The overseas edition of the party's People's Daily said on its WeChat account that everyone should "pay close attention" to what message on reform this plenum puts out.

The overseas edition of the party's People's Daily said on its WeChat account that everyone should "pay close attention" to what message on reform this plenum puts out.

This year marks 40 years since China began landmark economic reforms following the chaos of the country's Cultural Revolution.

While important party posts were unveiled at the party congress in October, government positions including the roles of premier and ministers still need to be decided and formally voted on at the annual session of the largely rubber-stamp Parliament, which opens on March 5.

Meanwhile, Xinhua reported that Mr Yang Jing, secretary of the Central Committee, State Councillor and Secretary General of the State Council, has been removed from his administrative positions and is under investigation for suspected "serious disciplinary violations".

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 25, 2018, with the headline 'China's ruling party to meet on reform'. Print Edition | Subscribe