A deputy director of the Communist Party’s Central National Security Commission was appointed as the acting mayor of Beijing on Monday, according to mainland media reports. The appointment of Cai Qi was announced by Beijing party chief Guo Jinlong, Beijing Daily reported, confirming a South China Morning Post report about Cai’s move on Sunday. “Cai has strong political sensitivity and is loyal to the party,” Guo was quoted as saying. Guo praised Cai for having a broad range of experience, including his term on the commission, a body founded in 2013 and chaired by President Xi Jinping. The report was the first official confirmation of Cai’s role at the commission. Close ally of Xi Jinping tipped to be new mayor of Beijing Cai will take over from Wang Anshun, who is rumoured to be moving to the State Council’s Development Research Centre. Cai’s political career has overlapped Xi’s. Before being promoted to commission deputy director in 2014, Cai spent nearly 15 years in Zhejiang – first as deputy party secretary of Quzhou, then as mayor of the provincial capital, Hangzhou, before becoming provincial deputy governor. Cai, born in Youxi county, Fujian province, worked for 11 years in his hometown. Fujian was also a power base for Xi.