China Policy Institute Blog

China in Latin America: A Deepening Friendship

Written by Ariel Armony. What did Beijing hope to gain from President Xi Jinping’s visit to Latin America?  As we know, the Chinese leader had an intense agenda planned for the region: the BRICS summit in Brazil (and corresponding talks with leaders from UNASUR – the Union of South American Nations), a meeting with the “Quartet” …

Princelings, preferences and power

Written by Kerry Brown. Do Chinese leaders have to believe anything? After all, unlike their western counterparts, they don’t have to engage in battles over ideas and approaches during an election campaign, nor are they rudely exposed to forensic intellectual examination in the way that politicians in the US, Europe or other democracies are when …

Xi’s Impossible Trinity – Innovation, Anti-Corruption and Political Stability

Written by Lauren Johnston. In economics the impossible trinity describes how governments can set only two of three macroeconomic policy variables, even if they are all independently desirable. Those three variables are fixed exchange rates, independent monetary policy and free movement of capital. Amid calls from former Chinese leaders Hu Jintao and Jiang Zemin that President …

Can Xi Jinping make the connection?

Written by Kerry Brown. Michael Igantieff’s extraordinary account of his life as a politician in Canada after over three decades as an academic and public intellectual carries a suitable title: ‘Fire and Ashes’. He makes it clear in the very powerful stories he gives of why he went into politics so late in life, how …

China’s non-interference policy: PRC leaders and the realist perspective

Written by Edward Friedman. How would a realist IR theorist describe the purposes and actual behavior in a CCP claim that PRC foreign policy is premised on a principle of non-interference? How would a PRC leader comment on the realist analysis? From a realist IR perspective, “the strong do what they will; the weak do what they …

Zero tolerance of corruption, but who’s first for investigation?

Written by Jackie Sheehan. Premier Li Keqiang stressed in his speech at the just-closed National People’s Congress that corruption under the Xi-Li leadership will have “nowhere to hide” in China, and that seniority will be no protection: “No matter who or how senior an official is, if they violate Party discipline and the law, they …

Xi Jinping’s Tiger Hunt

Written by Andrew Hall Wedeman. The Communist Party of China has been grappling with corruption almost from its birth. It has waged major anti-corruption campaigns repeatedly and routinely prosecutes substantial numbers of officials. Between 1997 and 2012 the Supreme People’s Procuratorate reported that it indicted 550,000 individuals on either corruption or dereliction of duty charges, …

The Middle Dream

Written by Lauren Johnston. Soon after becoming Chinese President in November 2012 Xi Jinping spoke of his belief that “The Great Revival of the Chinese nation is the greatest Chinese dream”. Attempts to understand the concept of “Chinese dream”, inside and outside of China, have followed extensively since. This post reflects on the evolution of …

When will Xi Jinping bag a tiger?

Written by Yuwen Deng and Jonathan Sullivan. Whispers surrounding President Xi Jinping’s ‘tiger hunt’ (a metaphor for going after high level corrupt officials) have been circulating ever since he assumed the top positions in party and state in 2012. In recent days many Chinese language media outlets outside of China have reported that Xi’s tiger …

China’s Proposed “State Security Council”: Social Governance under Xi Jinping

Written by Samantha Hoffman and Peter Mattis. The communiqué following the Third Plenum on 12 November stated that a “State Security Committee” would be established to “perfect the national security system and national security strategy, and ensure national security.” No specific information on the plan was provided, leaving to question what form the future committee might …