Wang Qishan, the feared head of Chinese president Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign, was not named to the Communist party’s new Central Committee on Tuesday, making him ineligible for another five-year term on the party’s most powerful body. Wang’s possible re-appointment to the Politburo Standing Committee had been one of the most hotly discussed outcomes at a party congress marking the start of Xi’s second five-year term, as party has respected an unofficial retirement age of 68 for Politburo Standing Committee members since 2002. A mooted second term for Wang, 69, would have confirmed that this convention no longer applied and set a precedent for Xi to serve a third term as party general secretary beginning in 2022, when he will also be 69. According to the Financial Times, many analysts also believe that Xi is unlikely to encounter any opposition if he seeks a third term as party leader.
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