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New Factions among Xi’s Loyalists

Before its 20th National Congress, the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) internal fighting used to be among three groups. Each groip was led by a former or current CCP top leader, These were the loyalist group (led by Xi Jinping); the Shanghai clique (led by Jiang Zemin), and the Youth League clique (led by its spiritual leader Hu Jintao).

Since the CCP’s 20th National Congress, Xi Jinping’s followers have dominated the key positions all across the political spectrum. Though they are all from Xi’s camp, they themselves have their own factions. Wu Guogang, advisor to the former CCP’s General Secretary Zhao Ziyang, observed that Xi’s people can be grouped into four factions (identified by locations where Xi had worked previously) and under another five groups.

The four factions are the Fujian (Province) faction, the Zhejiang (Province) faction, the Shanghai (Province) faction, and the Shaanxi (Province) faction. Xi had worked in the first three provinces. The last one, Shaanxi, was where Xi’s father Xi Zhongxun (习仲勋) started. Thus it was also considered a base for Xi’s loyalists.

For example, at the State Council, Li Qiang (李强) – who is anticipated to be the next Premier – is from Zhejiang; Ding Xuexiang (丁薛祥) – who is anticipated to be the next Executive Vice Premier – is from Shanghai; and He Lifeng (何立峰) –  who is anticipated to be the next Vice Premier in charge of Finance – is from Fujiang,

Xi also used many officials from another five groups. These are officials are from the military and industrial sectors, officials related to Tsinghua University, officials related to the CCP’s Central Party School, officials connected to Xi’s wife Peng Liyuan, and officials from the security sector.

These factions and groups sometimes engage in political in-fighting among themselves.

Source: NTDTV, January 28, 2023