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  • Writer's pictureRichard Hu

Xiong'an, Xi Jinping’s new city-making machine turned on

Updated: Jul 24, 2020

Behind mega urban projects often stand strong political wills. Xiong’an is called China’s number-one urban project, and it is orchestrated by President Xi Jinping.

China is midway through the largest urbanisation process in human history. New cities have mushroomed in recent decades. The most prominent are Shenzhen and Pudong Shanghai, both of which are now major global financial and business centres.

Shenzhen and Pudong Shanghai were credited to Deng Xiaoping. China’s then leader pushed forward the construction of these cities from scratch, to drive his agenda of national reform and opening up to the world.

After his first five-year term as president, it is clear that Xi Jinping’s political ambition is to equal or even surpass the records of Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping. Mao and Deng each ruled China for nearly three decades, in person and by selecting their successors.

Xi has proclaimed a “new era”, enthroned his “thoughts”, appointed his allies, and outlined national modernisation goals to 2035 and even as far ahead as 2050.

He also amended the Chinese Constitution to remove the two-term restriction on the presidency. This was the final barrier to pursuing power after 2023, when he was due to step down.

What else? Xi needs a new city, with his name more

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