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Bo Xilai tipped to be China's commerce minister
Updated: 2004-02-16 09:21

Bo Xilai, governor of Northeast China's Liaoning Province, is tipped to become the Minister of Commerce next month, nen.com.cn said on Sunday, quoting a high-level meeting of the provincial government.

Bo Xilai [newsphoto/file]
Zhang Wenyue was slated for the position of Liaoning governor, the official website of the Liaoning Province said on Sunday.

The personnel change was announced Sunday by the Vice-minister of the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee at the meeting in Liaoning.

Officials at the Commerce Ministry and the Liaoning provincial government confirmed reports that Bo, 54, would take up the post now held by Lu Fuyuan, according to a report by the Associate Press.

However, Reuters quoted a ministry spokesman as saying that "the appointment for Bo Xilai should be approved by the National People's Congress, before that, everything is rumour."

The annual session of the People's Congress will be held on March 5-14 .

On Monday, the Liaoning site, nen.com.cn, hinted at Bo's appointment but did not specify where he would go.

"Comrade Xilai was shifted to an important new post," it quoted provincial party chief Wen Shizheng as saying. "It is a full affirmation of Comrade Xilai."

Born in July 1949, Bo Xilai began working in a Beijing factory in January 1968 and joined the Communist Party of China (CPC) in October 1980.

Bo was elected as vice governor and acting governor of Liaoning Province in January 2001. In February of the same year, he became governor of Liaoning and has held that position since then.

Before Bo was elected Liaoning governor, he was mayor of Dalian from 1993-2001. Dalian is a key port city in Liaoning.

Before becoming Dalian mayor, Bo worked with the Research Office of the CPC Central Committee Secretariat and CPC Central Committee General Office, and served as deputy secretary and secretary of the Jinxian County Party Committee in Liaoning.

In 1999, Bo won the UN-Habitat Scroll of Honor Award for his contributions to housing construction and sustainable development.

Bo holds a bachelor's degree in world history from Beijing University and a master's degree from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

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