BEIJING Nov 14 China's central bank governor,
Zhou Xiaochuan, is likely a step nearer retirement on Wednesday
after his name was left out of a key policymaking group of the
ruling Communist Party.
Zhou's name was a notable absence from the list of 205
members of the party's Central Committee, membership of which is
a condition of holding a cabinet-ranked job such as central bank
Market speculation about Zhou's tenure at the People's Bank
of China intensified at the weekend when he was asked about the
issue at a news conference.
Zhou turns 65 - the mandatory retirement age for a Chinese
cabinet minister, although there are cases where people have
stayed in post beyond it - in January. He has been central bank
chief since December 2002.