Presidents Of Communist China Through History

Mao Zedong declares the founding of the modern People's Republic of China, October 1, 1949.
Mao Zedong declares the founding of the modern People's Republic of China, October 1, 1949.

The Republic of China is the world’s most populous country and the 2nd largest country by landmass. China has been run basically by the dynasties but later in 1912, it became a republic. From a small economy to a very vibrant economy, China’s progress is mostly the work of its past great leaders. Here is the look of the three Presidents in the history of the Republic of China.

Mao Zedong

Popularly known as Chairman Mao, was the founding father of the People's Republic of China. Born into a rich farmer’s family in Hunan province, he spent some time as a soldier. At a period when China was going through an evolution and revolution as world’s most populous country and launched itself on an economic development platform, Mao played a very crucial role in the country’s resurgence. He was an active participant in the united front and his appointment as a head of the peasant movement helped him in taking off his political career. Mao was hugely responsible for the establishment of Red Army during the late 1920’s. Establishment of Peoples Republic of China (PRC) in 1949 transformed the political conditions of China. He succeeded in getting Stalin to sign a treaty of mutual assistance accompanied by limited economic aid ending the long-standing tensions with Moscow. Mao helped China march forward in all aspects and gave importance to industrialization and supply of machines to industries. In 1960’s, he perceived in what he called “capitalist restoration”. The Cultural Revolution was successful but lead to great disorder forcing Mao to call in the military to restore order.

Liu Shaoqi

Liu was considered the apparent successor of Mao Zedong until he was purged in the late1960s. He was considered the next most powerful man in the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Liu was active in the Chinese Labor movement and was quite influential in the formulation of the governmental strategies and foreign affairs of communist China. In 1922, Liu organized National Labor Congress and slowly and steadily developed his career in politics. Liu went underground when the Nationalist Party and CCP split in April 1927 and later was elected to the 5th central committee of CCP. In 1932, Liu joined Mao’s forces and later after 4 years was named secretary to the party’s north China bureau when war with Japan has spread to most of China. Liu grew well in the party and became the most powerful man in the Chinese communist hierarchy. During the late 60’s in his new post as head of the state, he played an important role in foreign affairs. Along with his associates, he was the first to be purged in the great proletarian Cultural Revolution. It is believed that in 1971, Liu had died in a plane crash while fleeing from an attempt to assassinate Mao.

Dong Biwu

Dong Biwu was a Chinese communist political leader who shaped his career under the regime of Mao Zedong. Mao and Dong were the only members who attended both the establishment of PRC and 1st Congress. He acted as China’s Vice President along with Soong Ching Ling from 1959-1975. He also served as the President of Supreme Court of newly founded China. He was the member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of China during 1945 - 1975. He died in 1975 a year before Mao.

However, the head of the People's Republic of China under the constitution was majorly ceremonial and had very limited powers. The offices of President and Vice-President were abolished by the constitution in 1975 and were transferred to the chairman of the standing committee.

Presidents Of Communist China Through History

RankPresident of the People's Republic of ChinaTerm in Office
1Mao Zedong
October 1st, 1949 to April 27th, 1959
2Liu Shaoqi
April 27th, 1959 to October 31st, 1968
3Dong BiwuOctober 31st, 1968 to January 17th, 1975
4None (Position Abolished)January 18th, 1975 to June 18th, 1983
5Li Xiannian
June 18th, 1983 to April 8th, 1988
6Yang Shangkun
April 8th, 1988 to March 27th, 1993
7Jiang Zemi
March 27th, 1993 to March 15th, 2003
8Hu Jintao
March 15th, 2003 to March 14th, 2013
9Xi Jinping
March 14th, 2013 to Present

More in Society