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Huge political changes in China to ‘increase risk’ of instability

Reforms to the Chinese constitution could increase the risk of political instability in the nation.

The Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee has proposed restrictions be lifted on the length of presidential rule.

The constitution currently states the president and the vice president can serve no more than two consecutive terms, a total of five years.

This could see the current president Xi Jinping rule beyond 2023.

Former ambassador to China, Dr Geoff Raby, tells Ross Greenwood more.

“It’s very significant.¬†Basically, it brings to an end the institutionalised mechanisms that have been put in place painfully over the last 30-40 years to transfer political power from one generation to the next.

“The institutional framework is now gone.”

Dr Raby says political instability could result.

“There’s a new element of uncertainty in the medium term about China which we really didn’t have to contemplate until this.

“It changes the nature of the Chinese political system… we have to watch this very closely because it does substantially now increase the risk that there could be political instability in China.”

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