Rising star Wan named mayor of Guangzhou

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 17 April, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 17 April, 2010, 12:00am

Former Guangdong deputy governor Wan Qingliang was appointed Guangzhou's new mayor yesterday as part of the largest provincial leadership reshuffle in a decade.

Wan was elected mayor by members of the Guangzhou People's Congress yesterday.

Last week, Guangzhou's city government announced Wan's appointment as the city's deputy party secretary, paving the way for him to become mayor. The South China Morning Post reported last month that Wan was tipped to be the city's next mayor.

Wan, 46, was the youngest of the province's eight deputy governors and has been widely regarded as a rising star after being promoted to the key provincial position in 2008.

He has been closely involved in cross-border issues and represented the province at the Hong Kong/Guangdong Co-operation Joint Conference in February.

No announcement was made as to who would succeed Wan in taking charge of cross-border issues.

Meeting the local press yesterday after taking up the new position, Wan said he felt honoured to take on the responsibility and would treasure the trust placed in him by the Guangzhou people.

'Today is a meaningful day in my life, as it is the second time I have been elected as a mayor,' Wan said. He was made mayor of Jieyang, in eastern Guangdong province, in June 2003.

Wan said he planned to implement projects and goals laid out by former mayor Zhang Guangning .

The new mayor also pledged to speed up economic transformation, unite Guangzhou's people and officials to put on a good show for November's Asian Games and address livelihood issues.

'I will do my utmost to serve Guangzhou's people and address people's key concerns as well as striving hard to bring Guangzhou a bluer sky, clearer water, smoother traffic, prettier houses and a more beautiful city,' he said.

Wan did not take any questions from reporters.

His appointment is being closely watched by political observers, as his new position will make him a strong candidate to move further up the political hierarchy in 2013.

Zhang has been promoted to become the provincial capital's party boss, replacing rising star Zhu Xiaodan , who was appointed Guangdong's executive deputy governor in February.

Acting Shenzhen mayor Wang Rong was appointed that city's party boss last week.