|Communist Party Secretary of Chongqing|
|Deputy||Huang Qifan (mayor)
Zhang Guoqing (zhuanzhi)
|Preceded by||Zhang Dejiang|
|Communist Party Secretary of Jilin Province|
November 2009 – November 2012
|Preceded by||Wang Min|
|Succeeded by||Wang Rulin|
|Minister of Agriculture of the People's Republic of China|
December 2006 – December 2009
|Preceded by||Du Qinglin|
|Succeeded by||Han Changfu|
|Born||September 1963 (age 53)
|Political party||Communist Party of China|
|Alma mater||Qingdao Agricultural University
China Agricultural University
Sun Zhengcai (Chinese: 孙政才; born September 1963) is a Chinese politician and senior regional official. Since November 2012, Sun has been the Communist Party Secretary of Chongqing, an interior municipality, and a member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of China. Prior to that, he served as the Party Secretary of Jilin province, and Minister of Agriculture of China.
Sun is the youngest member of the 18th Politburo of the Communist Party of China, and one of only two members born after 1960, the other being Hu Chunhua. As such, Sun is considered to be a leading candidate for a top leadership position in the "6th Generation of Chinese leadership".
Sun was born to an ordinary family of farmers in a village located near the city of Rongcheng, Shandong province in September 1963. In 1980, Sun was admitted to the Laiyang Agricultural College (now Qingdao Agricultural University). After obtaining a bachelor's degree, he pursued post-graduate work at the Beijing Agriculture and Forestry Institute and the Beijing Agricultural University, where he obtained master's degrees in agronomy. After completing his academic work, he remained at the institute to conduct further research and eventually obtained positions as an administrator, rising to become executive vice president of the institute, in charge of its day-to-day work.
Sun joined the Communist Party of China in July 1988. In 1997, he was named governor and deputy party chief of Shunyi County in rural Beijing. Shunyi was then converted from a county to an urban district; Sun continued to serve as district governor. In February 2002, he became the Party Secretary of the Shunyi District outside of Beijing, and also earned a seat on the municipal Party Standing Committee. After serving concurrently as secretary general of the Beijing party organization, in December 2006, he was appointed as Minister of Agriculture according to the nomination of Premier Wen Jiabao. At age 43, Sun was one of the youngest State Council ministers at the time.
In November 2009, Sun was named party chief of Jilin province, in northeast China. In November 2012, after the 18th CPC National Congress, he was appointed a member of the Politburo and replaced Zhang Dejiang as party chief of Chongqing. The post in Chongqing had emerged as one of the most important regional offices in China, and Sun's assuming the reins in the interior municipality signaled that he was likely destined for even higher office. It also demonstrated the trust that the central leadership placed in Sun, as Chongqing had only monthly earlier weathered a political storm with the attempted defection of police chief Wang Lijun and the ouster of party chief Bo Xilai. Since the 1990s, regional leadership tenures were seen as important stepping stones to eventual national leadership.
On the Politburo, Sun and then-Guangdong party chief Hu Chunhua were the only members born after 1960 with a seat on the elite council. As one of the youngest current provincial-level leaders, Sun is considered as a promising candidate for the sixth-generation leaders of the Communist Party, expected to come to power in 2022. If the informally mandated retirement for top officials holds, Sun could theoretically serve on the Politburo until the 22nd Party Congress in 2032.
It is not clear if Sun had any strong backing from former political heavyweights prior to his ascendancy to the Politburo. It has been suggested that Jia Qinglin or Wen Jiabao may have served as Sun's advocate for promotion; the former because Sun worked for Beijing for much of his early political career, where Jia Qinglin was party chief, and the latter because Wen and Sun both share a modest upbringing and common concerns for China's rural population.
|Party political offices|
|Communist Party Secretary of Chongqing
2012 – present
|Communist Party Secretary of Jilin
2009 – 2012
|Minister of Agriculture of China
2006 – 2009