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We should not copy Western system: Wu
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08:14, March 10, 2009

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The direction for the country's political reform is to improve the existing socialist political system instead of blindly copying Western models, the top legislator said yesterday.

China will actively draw on "the fruits from the entire human civilization, including achievements made in the political sphere", but "can by no means indiscriminately copy the Western system", Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), told about 3,000 deputies while delivering a work report.

"We will not have multi-party rule, or the separation of legislative, executive and judicial powers," he said.

Wu called on deputies to maintain the "correct political orientation", stressing the "essential differences" between China's people's congresses and Western capitalist system of political power.

He said the differences are mainly in three aspects:

China's system is of multi-party cooperation and political consultation under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), not a Western-style multi-party system.

The system of the people's congresses is not a Western system with separation of powers.

Deputies to the people's congresses are broadly representative, and do not represent a single party or group as members of Western parliaments do.

Wu also called on legislators to look closely at social issues and strengthen supervision of the government's work on the economy this year.

He said the country will take "decisive steps" this year toward establishing a socialist legal system with Chinese characteristics.

According to the legislation plan, the NPC Standing Committee will formulate at least seven laws, including the long-anticipated social security law and social welfare law.

Xin Chunying, deputy director of the legislative affairs commission of the NPC Standing Committee, said closer attention to social issues in legislation would help provide a solid legal foundation for a harmonious society.

"About half the laws reviewed last year were on social problems, such as the Food Safety Law," she told a press conference.

"This year, some very important legislation, such as the draft social security law and social welfare law, will be submitted for deliberation."

In addition, the NPC Standing Committee this year will expand supervision of the economy, Wu said.

Gao Qiang, director of the NPC Standing Committee's budgetary affairs commission, said the supervision focus will be on the $172 billion spending by the central government on the stimulus package.

Premier Wen Jiabao on Thursday proposed to the NPC a massive economic stimulus plan, which included spending $586 billion over two years to perk up the economy amid the global financial crisis. Of the spending, about $172 billion will come from the central government.

Gao said the NPC Standing Committee will closely watch whether the money goes to the right projects and whether the money is used properly. "We'll ask for closer auditing to prevent waste or embezzlement."

NPC deputies hailed the legislature's move to enact more laws on social issues.

"With the development of society and the impact of the financial crisis, more social conflicts are emerging. They need laws to regulate," said Chi Susheng, a deputy and a lawyer from Heilongjiang province.

Chi also said the NPC Standing Committee has improved its supervision role in recent years, but "it should be intensified".

Source: China Daily

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