Beijing: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Friday said that he will retire later this year after serving two five-year terms.
Li, 66, the second ranking leader of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC) after President Xi Jinping, said: “This is my last year as a premier.” Li along with other members of the government were set to retire after this year’s once-in-year-five-year CPC Congress which will usher in a new leadership at all levels.
As per the widely-followed CPC convention, the leaders heading the party and the government retire after two five-year terms.
Xi, 68, who heads the CPC besides the military and Presidency, unlike his predecessors, is set to continue in power, perhaps for life after completing his 10-year tenure this year as he is conferred the title of “core leader” like party founder Mao Zedong.
Since taking over from his predecessor Wen Jiabao in 2013, Li has been more withdrawn and played a more supportive role to Xi and focusing on the economy, the world’s second largest.
Li, who joined the CPC in May 1976, is a graduate of Peking University’s Law Department where he earned a Bachelor of Law degree, and of the university’s School of Economics where he completed an in-service graduate program in economics and was awarded a Doctor of Economics degree, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency.
He is currently a member of the Standing Committee of the 19th CPC Central Committee Political Bureau, Premier of the State Council, and Secretary of its Leading Party Members Group.