Share this on Twitter Share this on Facebook Share this on LinkedIn Share this on Sina Weibo Share this on Wechat Share this on LinkedIn The Communist Party unveiled its new seven-member Politburo Standing Committee on October 23, 2022. From left to right, top to bottom, Li Qiang, Wang Huning, Ding Xuexiang, Xi Jinping, Zhao Leji, Cai Qi, and Li Xi. Credit: Reuters/Thomas Peter/Tingshu Wang via Alamy We missed the clues. Foreign analysts surprised that all members of the new Politburo Standing Committee (PSC) of the Communist Party of China (CPC) have close relations with General Secretary Xi Jinping should have seen it coming. Prior to past congresses, rumors of prospective PSC members generally swirled in ever tighter circles and often congealed. But this time, prior to the 20th National Congress, the rumors continued to be diverse and lacking in credibility, indicating Xi’s extraordinarily tight control of Party leaders and any information about them. Over the past year or so I heard, at different times, four names allegedly in the lead for premier. Li Qiang, the man apparently now set to win the post, was not in the top three among foreign handicappers until just before the Congress. When I was asked to predict PSC members, I said that when the men walk on to the stage, then I would be able to ‘reverse engineer’ each name and explain why each is there. This may sSubscribe or login to read the rest. Subscribers get full access to: Exclusive longform investigative journalism, Q&As, news and analysis, and data on Chinese business elites and corporations. We publish China scoops you won't find anywhere else. A weekly curated reading list on China from David Barboza, Pulitzer Prize-winning former Shanghai correspondent for The New York Times. A daily roundup of China finance, business and economics headlines. We offer discounts for groups, institutions and students. Go to our Subscriptions page for details.