Mainland China Executive Vice-Premier to Oversee HK and Macau affairs

March 24, 2023 | Government

Ding Xuexiang was appointed as the top official but the present head of the ministerial-level office to stay on and help transition

MACAU, SAR (March 22, 2023) — Vice Premier Ding Xuexiang will oversee Hong Kong and Macau affairs and take over the role of leading Beijing’s SARs affairs team, following his predecessor Han Zheng’s promotion to vice president, sources said.

Ding, 60, is the sixth-ranked member of the Politburo Standing Committee of the Chinese Communist Party.

Having worked at the general office of the CCP for a decade, he is familiar with Hong Kong and Macau affairs.

Ding has accompanied President Xi Jinping to Hong Kong twice and attended many of Xi’s meetings with Hong Kong and Macau chief executives in Beijing.

During the annual two-session meetings of the National People’s Congress and Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference earlier this month, Ding was officially appointed the first vice premier.

Sources said new Premier Li Qiang, who is also the leader of the State Council, hosted a meeting among council officials on Friday to discuss the division of labor. It is understood that Ding was assigned to oversee the nation’s reform and development, as well as Hong Kong and Macau affairs.

His former position as director of the CCP’s general office has been taken over by Cai Qi, the fifth-ranking member of the Politburo Standing Committee.

A source said: “Hong Kong has stepped into a new stage from chaos to order and from order to prosperity. Economic development, livelihood improvement and integration into the nation’s development will be the focuses.

“It is ideal for the first premier to oversee Hong Kong and Macau affairs.”

Born in 1962 in Jiangsu province, Ding worked as an engineer in Shanghai after graduating with a university degree. He had been the head of the material engineering office in Shanghai’s mechanical and industrial department.

He changed fields to politics at the age of 37, when he became a district leader in Zhabei, Shanghai.

In 2007, Ding, then 45, was picked by then Shanghai party secretary Xi to become his private secretary and gatekeeper. After Xi became president in 2013, Ding was relocated to Beijing to become the deputy director of the party’s general office.

He was promoted as a Politburo member and director of the party’s general office five years later.

SOURCE: The Standard.

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