The family wealth of China’s third-most-senior official

Domestic News

A New York Times investigation into the Hong Kong real estate investments and business connections of Communist Party elite found that Li Qianxin, the daughter of Li Zhanshu, the third-most-senior official in China, is quite prodigious.

a picture of a beach house in hong kong owned by li qianxin, the daughter of li zhanshu
A $15 million beach town house in Hong Kong, confirmed by the New York Times to be owned by the daughter of the third-most-senior official in the Chinese Communist Party. Photo via Alexandra Stevenson.

Today, the New York Times published an investigation that centers on the wealth and Hong Kong business connections of Lì Qiánxīn 栗潜心, the daughter of Lì Zhànshū 栗战书, the third-most-senior official in the Chinese Communist Party. The story is by Alexandra Stevenson and Michael Forsythe.

In short: There is a ton of wealth — Li Qianxin herself bought a $15 million, four-story beach town house in Hong Kong back in 2013, when she was only 31 years old. But while the story traces a fascinating and previously undisclosed, or unproven, web of connections among the Communist Party elite, Stevenson and Forsythe note it is “impossible to know” how Li obtained her wealth.

Beyond Li: The NYT confirmed that Communist Party elites own “more than $51 million” in luxury homes in Hong Kong, making this “one of the leadership’s biggest exposures” to the city.

Including Ms. Li, relatives of three of the top four members of China’s Communist Party have in recent years bought luxury homes in Hong Kong worth more than $51 million combined, a New York Times investigation shows.

Qí Qiáoqiáo 齐桥桥, the older sister of Xí Jìnpíng 习近平, China’s president, started buying properties in Hong Kong as early as 1991, Hong Kong property records show. Her daughter, Zhāng Yànnán 张燕南, owns a villa in Repulse Bay, which she bought in 2009 for $19.3 million, and at least five other apartments, the city’s property and company records indicate.

Wāng Xīshā 汪溪沙, a former Deutsche Bank executive who is the daughter of Wāng Yáng 汪洋, the No. 4 party leader, bought a $2 million home in Hong Kong in 2010, according to city property records.

More detail and photo documentation can be found in a 50-tweet thread by Mike Forsythe. For some goodies not included in the New York Times report, start at tweet 25.