China's local gov'ts urged to implement power list system

2015-03-24 23:26:09 GMT2015-03-25 07:26:09(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

BEIJING, March 24 (Xinhua) -- Local governments at all levels have been told they must introduce a power list system to ensure accountability and transparency.

According to a guideline issued by the General Office of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the General Office of the State Council, local governments should publicize their administrative powers and processes to facilitate public supervision.

The power list system is an important step towards the modernization of state governance system and governance capabilities, says the guideline, adding it will prevent governments from executing excessive power or shying away from their responsibilities.

The power list system is part of the central government's effort to streamline administration and delegate power to lower levels. Since March 2013, the central government has reviewed hundreds of irrelevant administrative procedures to stimulate the market.

The guideline says an efficient government administrative power system features clear definitions, rational division, and power and responsibility consistent with law. It says that a supervision, check and coordination system for government powers will also be established.

Local government departments with administrative authority are the focus of the power list system.

The guideline urged local governments at all levels to ensure administrative powers are cataloged.

In addition, local governments are urged to cancel administrative powers that have no legal basis or contradict existing laws. All powers to be retained will be reviewed based on legitimacy, rationality and necessity.

Power lists should be publicized on publicly accessible channels such as official government websites.

After the power lists are released, local governments, public institutions with administrative authority, and other local administrative agencies must exercise power in strict accordance with the lists.

They will be held accountable if they fail to perform their due responsibility.

The power to mete out administrative approval and penalties will be addressed first. Priority will be given to streamlining the powers wielded by government bodies that influence business activities or involve numerous approval rights.

The list of administrative power should be made to better serve the public, the guideline says, adding the public should be able to see the benefits of this reform.

A timetable has been set for governments to publish power lists. Provincial governments and public institutions need to issue the inventories by the end of 2015. Municipal and county governments, and public institutions must finish the task by the end of 2016.

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