China's Former Antigraft Chief Wang Qishan Named Vice President

Buhari congratulates Chinese president on reelection

Buhari congratulates Chinese president on reelection

The move paves the way for Xi and Wang to stay in power indefinitely after their terms end in 2023. After the announcement, Mr. Wang walked across the dais to shake the hand of Mr. Xi as the delegates applauded.

Wang's appointment is crucial for "rising China" as he can help Xi deal with increasingly frayed relations with the Trump-led United States amid fears of a trade war. The appointment of Mr. Wang, who is about five years older than Mr. Xi, allows the president to avoid placing a younger official-and potential competitor-in a post that leaders-in-waiting have held in the past.

Weeks after eliminating two-term rule for the President in China, Xi Jinping has been re-elected as the country's president for the second consecutive five-year tenure on Saturday. To avoid another chaotic Mao Zedong's 1966-1976 Cultural Revolution in which millions were killed, Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in 1982 adopted the two-term limit.

"Xi will be chairman of everything", said Ether Yin, a partner at advisory firm Trivium China in Beijing.

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While most of Xi's power flows from his roles as party chief and supreme military commander, being president - or "chairman" in Chinese - gives him legal standing as head of state.

The constitution states that the vice president can "assist" the president in his work and act on his behalf to carry out presidential duties.

As part of the package of constitutional amendments, Xi and Wang for the first time took the oath of office by pledging allegiance to the constitution.

Wang, born in July 1948, was a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the CPC from 2012 to 2017.

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"Wang will have as much authority as Xi grants him", said political commentator Deng Yuwen.

"Basically, it's him minimizing collective leadership without abolishing the institution all together", Xie said.

Chinese lawmakers were expected to confirm new terms for more top officials - including Premier Li Keqiang and top military and law enforcement officials - in votes Sunday. Still, Xi's new power might provide reassurance to investors who believe that bureaucratic resistance has slowed his reform agenda.

Centralized control by one man could become a problem should his health fail or subordinates hesitate to question bad decisions from the top.

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