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Wen Jiabao

Wen Jiabao (溫家寶) is the Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China. He serves as a member of its Leading Party Members' Group and Secretary of the Financial Work Committee of the CPC Central Committee. Since taking office in 2003, Wen, ranked third in the Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China hierarchy, has been a key part of the the fourth generation of leadership in the Communist Party of China.

A native of Tianjin, Wen Jiabao was born in September 1942. He joined the Communist Party of China (CPC) in April 1965 and began working in September 1967.

A postgraduate and engineer, Wen graduated from the specialty of geological structure of Beijing Institute of Geology[?]. Having studied geomechanics in Beijing, he began his career in the Gansu geology bureau; from 1968-1978, he presided over the the Geomechanics Survey Team under the Gansu Provincial Geological Bureau and head of its political section. Rising as chief of the Gansu Provincial Geological Bureau and later as minister for the for natural resources sector of the economy, Wen would rise through the ranks of the Politburo Central Committee and later its top Standing Committee in the 1980s and 1990s. Wen's move from Gansu to Beijing occurred after the party, then under General Secretary Hu Yaobang, was conducting a talent search in which Wen was quickly promoted to serve as the deputy in the Party's Central Office. He remained in the post for eight years.

Wen Jiabao is the only Standing Committee member to have served under three party secretaries: Hu Yaobang, Zhao Ziyang, and Jiang Zemin. A political survivor, his most significant recovery was after 1989, when Wen Premier Wen was formerly the head assistant to General Secretary Zhao Ziyang. He accompanied then-Party Secretary Zhao Ziyang to Tiananmen Square. Zhao was purged from the party days later for grave subordination and has lived under house arrest in Beijing ever since. Unlike his mentor, Wen was able to politically survive the aftermath of the demonstrations. During a political career dating back to 1965, Wen has built a network of patrons. During that time Wen, a strong administrator and technocrat, has earned a reputation for meticulousness, competence, and a focus on tangible results. Outgoing Premier Zhu Rongji showed his esteem for Wen by entrusting him, from 1998, with the task of overseeing agriculture, finance and environment policies, considered crucial as China prepared to enter the World Trade Organization.

As premier Wen will oversee China's economic reforms, necessary as the party constantly changes to adapt to new conditions in the rapidly modernizing country. And Wen's broad range of experience and expertise, especially cultivated while presiding over agricultural policies under Zhu Rongji will prove important as the "forth generation" seeks to revitalize the rural economy in regions left out by the past two decades of reform.

Regarded as quiet and unassuming, he is said to be a good communicator and known as "man of the people". In a way, Wen epitomizes the forth generation of Communist leaders, who have made great efforts to emphasize their common origins and convictions, seeking to reach out to the many left out, for the time being, by the two decades of stunning economic growth in rural and especially Western China. Unlike Jiang Zemin and his protégés on the Politburo Standing Committee, who form the so-called "Shanghai clique", both Wen and Hu hail from, and have cultivated their political bases in, the vast Chinese interior. Many have noted the contrasts between Wen and Hu, "men of the people" and Jiang Zemin, the flamboynat, multilingual, and urbane former mayor of the country's most cosmopolitian city. Jiang, unlike his the more reserved Hu and Wen, is known to qutoe maxims of Chinese and Western philsophy and recite poetry in many languages.

Like President Hu Jintao, whose brilliance and photographic memory have facilitated his meteoric rise to power, Wen is well-equipped to preside over a vast bureaucracy in the world’s most populated and perhaps rapidly changing nation. In March 2003, the usually self-effacing Wen was quoted as saying, "The former Swiss ambassador to China once said that my brain is like a computer," he said. "Indeed, many statistics are stored in my brain." Mild-tempered and conciliatory, especially compared to his predecessor, the tough, straight talking Zhu Rongji, his consensual management have enabled him to generated a great deal of good will and little hostility in Beijing.


Wen Jiabao has made great efforts to meet with ordinary Chinese in the rural interior.

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