Nepal | December 06, 2019

Xi Jinping: Influence in China and beyond

Ankit Khadgi/Nishant Pokhrel

KATHMANDU: Primarily identified as the president of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, according to Forbes, is one of the most powerful persons in the world, who has brought tremendous change in China, making it a country that can now compete with the Global North.

Born in 1953 in a family which was no stranger to politics, Xi was forced to work as a labourer in Shaanxi province during the Cultural Revolution.

FILE – Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks at the opening ceremony for the second Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, China April 26, 2019. Photo: Reuters

After the end of the Revolution, Xi slowly and steadily started gaining better positions. In 1971, Xi joined the Communist Youth League of China and went on to be accepted into the Communist Party of China in 1974.

In 2012, he was named the general secretary of the Communist Party and also became the chairperson of the Central Military Commission.

His anti-corruption crackdown against senior politicians gained him popular support from Chinese citizens and in 2013, the National People’s Congress elected him the President of the People’s Republic of China.

China has been going through a tremendous transformation in Xi’s administration. Xi is called the core leader and is often regarded as the leader to have gained this level of power after Mao Zedong.

The catchphrase in Xi’s administration “Chinese Dream” has somehow carried China towards becoming the global power as China’s GDP rose from 8.532 trillion in 2012 to 13.608 trillion in 2018.

In 2017, the Communist Party Central Committee adopted Xi Jinping’s political ideologies — which are generally referred to as “Xi Jinping Thought” — as the party’s constitution.

However, Xi’s present China is often criticised for its treatment of minorities. The ongoing trade war with the United States and the Hong Kong protests have also drawn much attention. The unresolved trade war continues to affect the Chinese economy.

According to the international news agency Reuters, “Hong Kong has been tense for weeks, with protests often turning violent, as authorities tried to avoid activists spoiling Beijing’s birthday parade at a time when the central government is already grappling with a US-China trade war and a slowing economy.”

Despite global issues, under Xi, China continues to move ahead in infrastructure development. It has built massive new islands in the South China Sea and flexed its naval muscle. Xi also unilaterally declared a new Chinese air defence zone near Japan and South Korea. China claims almost all of the strategic South China Sea and frequently lambastes the United States and its allies over naval operations near Chinese-occupied islands, states Reuters.

Xi, with the aim of reviving ancient Chinese Silk Road, has started One Belt One Road (OBOR) Initiative. Through OBOR, China has been pouring billions of dollar and continuously increasing its influence all over the world.

The current Chinese government is also engaged in regular meetings with other communist parties and governments and has succeeded in spreading the “Xi Jinping Thought”.

The recent high-level meetings between communist leaders of Nepal and China was aimed at bolstering ties between communist parties of the two countries and following the Chinese ideologies for development.

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