China’s Leadership Transition: Three Things to Know
Videos

China’s Leadership Transition: Three Things to Know

November 15, 2012 2:28 pm (EST)

China’s Leadership Transition: Three Things to Know
Explainer Video

The Chinese Communist Party’s unveiling of the new Politburo Standing Committee represents a critical transition in the country’s leadership at a time when China is economically and militarily more powerful than ever before. Elizabeth C. Economy, CFR’s C.V. Starr senior fellow and director for Asia Studies, highlights three challenges the new leaders face:

More From Our Experts
  • Taking On Corruption – The new leadership will have to grapple with ongoing social discontent over corruption, Economy says. "If the next leadership fails to address this issue, it could lead to the downfall of the Chinese Communist Party as well as the state," she says.
  • Economic Reform – The leadership will also need to undertake a set of structural reforms to spur the country’s transition from a manufacturing to an innovation economy, reduce the role of vested interest, and refocus on domestic consumption, Economy says.
  • Choosing a Foreign Policy – The new leadership faces a "stark choice" between focusing more on domestic issues and less on foreign affairs and the "more assertive foreign policy" that had begun under President Hu Jintao over the past two or three years, says Economy.
Close

Top Stories on CFR

Taiwan

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi became the first speaker in twenty-five years to visit Taiwan.

Mexico

Comprehensive immigration reform has eluded Congress for years, moving controversial policy decisions into the executive and judicial branches of government.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s collapse should be a wake-up call for other South Asian countries that suffer from the same trend of “familycracy.”