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Vice Premier Liu He pauses after casting his ballot at the National People's Congress in Beijing on March 19.   © Reuters
Politics

Xi cements power with promotion of close allies to key posts

Bosom friend Liu entrusted to run China's economy

ISSAKU HARADA, OKI NAGAI and SHUNSUKE TABETA, Nikkei staff writers | China

BEIJING -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's trusted allies have taken charge of the economy and foreign affairs in the latest leadership shuffle, bringing together a wealth of expertise to clear hurdles the leader could face in his second and successive terms.

The National People's Congress on Monday elevated Liu He, a top economic adviser and old friend to Xi, to the post of vice premier, just months after the Communist Party's twice-a-decade National Congress handed him a seat in the powerful Politburo. Xi has told U.S. government officials that the economist, educated at Harvard University and the Renmin University of China, is extremely important to him.

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