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Expectations were high that a new, vigorous Politburo Standing Committee (PBSC) would be introduced at the recent conclusion of the 18th Party Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. Instead, two 50-somethings and five 60-somethings, many of them party stalwarts with strong ties to a former party leader, were named to the all important decision-making body. This means that "any real transition in leadership, and vigorous political reforms to accompany them, is likely going to have to wait until 2017, when the five elder 'chaperones' on the PBSC are required to finally retire and let the 'next generation' take charge," writes Steve Lewis, C.V. Starr Transnational China Fellow, in CNN's GPS blog.

Read Lewis' Nov. 16, 2012, analysis in "China"s leadership: Out with the old, in with the old."