Li  Jinjun
China

Li Jinjun

Vice-Minister, International Department of the CPC Central Committee

Date of Birth: 12/05/1956
Place of Birth: Jiangyin City, Jiangsu Province

A new player treads the boards of the African stage: Li Jinjun, Vice-Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China's Party's Central Committee. The party's International Department forges links with political parties abroad, forming a parallel diplomatic channel alongside China's Foreign Ministry.

The youngest of the four Vice-Ministers in the department, Li was born in Jiangyin, Jiangsu Province, in 1956. He attended the prestigious Shanghai International Studies University, and later studied in Germany.

Li joined the CPC Central Committee's International Department in 1975. He eventually became Director-General of its China Economic Cooperation Centre, a party organ for luring foreign investors and assisting China's outward investment. He has also served as Director-General of West European Affairs. A long stint as ambassador to Myanmar (2000-2005) was followed by 18 months as ambassador to the Philippines.

Promoted to his current position in March 2007, Li kept a low profile during his first year as Vice-Minister. This year he's emerged as a key official. He attended conferences of the Communist Party of India and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) in March, then opened a Chinese Association for International Understanding conference on African development in Beijing in April. In June, he accompanied International Department Minister Wang Jiarui in hosting Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa's African National Congress.Li led his first CPC 'goodwill delegation' to Africa from 18 July-1 August, a sign of his ascending influence. Li met Khumbo Kchali, vice-president of Malawi's ruling Democratic Progressive Party, Zambia's Acting President Rupiah Banda, and Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali