China has appointed Li Qiang as the country's next premier, replacing outgoing premier Li Keqiang.
Li Qiang, a close ally of President Xi Jinping and former Communist Party chief of Shanghai, will lead the world's second-largest economy amid some of its worst prospects in years, and a challenging economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
China's ceremonial parliament, the National People's Congress, appointed Li Qiang with no dissenting voices.
China has named Li Qiang as the country's next premier, replacing outgoing premier Li Keqiang.
Li Qiang is a close ally of Chinese President Xi Jinping and formerly served as the Communist Party chief of Shanghai.
During his tenure, he enforced a "zero-COVID" lockdown on the city, demonstrating his loyalty to Xi Jinping.
Li's appointment comes at a time when the Chinese economy is facing some of its worst prospects due to the COVID-19 pandemic, weak confidence among consumers and the private sector, and global headwinds.
Li will also take office amid rising tensions with the West, including U.S. moves to block China's access to key technologies.
Sources characterise Li Qiang as pragmatic and business-friendly, with a reputation for back-channelling to drive reforms.
An unnamed banker close to regulators and Shanghai officials said Li's relationship with Xi played a role in Xi's announcement of Shanghai's new tech-focused STAR Market and pilot registration-based IPO system, bypassing the China Securities Regulatory Commission.
However, Li's earlier enforcement of the Shanghai lockdown was characterised as brutal by The Independent, having been met with complaints from residents over a lack of access to food, medical care, and basic services.