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Major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics

On July 30, Xi Jinping oversaw a meeting of the Politburo to discuss economic reform, ahead of the widely-anticipated discussions at Beidaihe leading up to the release of a new economic reform package at the Third Plenum in October (Xinhua, July 30). The official press provides no further detail about the meeting, but Premier Li Keqiang has described the center’s economic priorities at great length in recent months. Meanwhile, Xi has been busy consolidating power, gaining hold of what appears to be an unusually strong grasp of the party’s central apparatus. It remains unclear, however, what these programs have to do with one another—how Xi and Li plan to enact wide-reaching changes beyond central control. As economic reform plans emerge in the coming months, this will be the critical question to ask.

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