Chinese regional and global strategies

Forbidden Secrets: The Black Box of Chinese Politics


Jan 1970

Forbidden Secrets: The Black Box of Chinese Politics

One year after the unprecedented appointments and reshuffles of the 20th Chinese Communist Party Congress, China watchers are still pondering the magnitude of issues facing China's sputtering economy.

This comes after Qin Gang, former Ambassador to the US and impending Minister of Foreign Affairs, was withdrawn from the international scene post-June 25th, allegedly due to an extramarital affair. This, and the similarly unexplained disappearance of the previously powerful General Li Shangfu in mid-September, has shifted the focus of China watchers toward the delay in announcing the 20th PCC’s Third Party Plenum. Plenums from 1978 to the most recent in October 2017 have set the tone for economic reforms and announced significant measures in the conduct of domestic policies.

Jean-Pierre Cabestan and Jean-François Di Meglio delved into questions arising from the ever-opaque management of the Party itself. As the Third Belt and Road Summit took place in Beijing, they assessed the potential consequences of these unexpected developments, placing them into the current perspective of China's positioning at a crucial crossroads: "releasing political and economic pressure post-Covid" versus the temptation of a more inward-looking political line. The speakers engaged in a discussion regarding the impact of China's domestic affairs on their international relations, delving into subjects such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the situation involving Hamas, and the matter of Jewish settlements.

About the speakers

Jean-Pierre Cabestan

Senior Researcher at Asia Centre, Emeritus Senior Researcher at French National Centre for Scientific Research, Emeritus Professor at Hong Kong Baptist University

Political Scientist and jurist specialised in contemporary China and contemporary Taiwan

Jean-François Di Meglio

President, co-founder and contributor of Asia Center, Associate Professor at Sciences Po Paris, Ecole Doctorale Professor at Paris School of International Affairs (PSIA), Associate Professor at Université Paris Dauphine - PSL

Specialist in international and asian finance and banking sector