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China initiates once-in-a-decade power transfer
March 4, 2013, 10:34 am


Wu Bangguo presides over the preparatory meeting for the first session of the 12th NPC at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China [Xinhua]

Deputies to the 12th National People’s Congress (NPC) have elected a presidium and set the agenda for the landmark legislative session that will begin on Tuesday.

This marks the beginning of the annual session of China’s national legislature.

A 178-member presidium and secretary-general were elected to take charge of the procedures of the session, said Fu Ying, a spokeswoman at a press conference in Beijing.

The annual session of the national legislature will complete the once-a-decade handover of power that began in November when Xi Jinping and his leadership team assumed the top positions in the Communist Party.

Li Jianguo was elected secretary-general of the NPC session, which is scheduled to last more than 12 days, said the spokeswomen.

Xi Jinping, 59, who took over as the party and military chief will be formally nominated as president during the session.

This marks the end of the era of Hu and Premier Wen Jiabao who steered the country for a decade during which China emerged as the second largest economy after the US.

The deputies of the national legislature will now elect the country’s president and vice president as well as the chairman and vice chairpersons of the 12th NPC Standing Committee.

Wu Bangguo, chairman of the 11th NPC Standing Committee, called on new deputies to sincerely fulfill their constitutional and legal obligations during the session.

“I hope the session will be democratic, united, pragmatic and progressive,” said Wu, who presided over the preparatory meeting.

They will also decide on the premier, vice premiers, state councillors and government ministers.

Deputies will elect the chairman of the Central Military Commission of the People’s Republic of China and heads of the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate.

They will hear and deliberate the government work report and examine the report on the national economic and social development plan and the central and local budgets.

Source: Xinhua