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The issues behind the 17th Communist Party Congress

Overview

Most attention at China’s 17th Communist Party Congress, which opens on 15 October, will be concentrated on the emergence – or not – of a new leader to succeed Hu Jintao when he steps down in 2012. But the personality contest obscures more important issues.

After three decades of economic reform, the leadership now faces a stiffer challenge to its authority than did its predecessors. Five years after his elevation, Hu must still accommodate competing factions and senior figures...

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