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Highlights of China's institutional restructuring plan
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08:40, March 16, 2008

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Chinese lawmakers on Saturday endorsed a State Council proposal for institutional overhaul of the central government, which involves the establishment of "super ministries" concerning energy, transport, industry and environmental protection.

The First Session of the 11th National People's Congress (NPC), the top legislature, passed a resolution to adopt the proposal after hearing and deliberating the explanation made by State Councilor Hua Jianmin, also secretary-general of the Cabinet.

Following are the highlights of the State Council proposal for institutional restructuring:

SUPER MINISTRIES

The target for this round of government reshuffle is to explore a "super ministry" system to streamline government department functions, and to form some "bigger departments" to strengthen macro-economic regulation, maintain national security of energy supply, integrate information development and industrialization.

It is also aimed at streamlining the country's transport system by setting up the ministry of transport to annex civil aviation and postal services, and urban passenger transport management of the Ministry of Construction.

The State Environmental Protection Administration will be elevated to be ministry of environmental protection, and the Ministry of Health empowered with the function to oversee food and drug safety.

The State Council now has 27 ministries and commissions apart from its General Office after the reshuffle, compared with the previous 28.

MACRO-REGULATION

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) will focus on macro-regulation and fade out from involvement in micromanagement of the economy and reduce its examination and approval of specific projects.

The Ministry of Finance shall reform and improve its management over budget and taxation. The People's Bank of China shall strengthen the system of monetary policies, and improve the mechanism of exchange rate formation.

The NDRC, the Ministry of Finance and the People's Bank of China shall establish and improve mechanisms for coordination, and form an improved macroregulation system.

NATIONAL ENERGY COMMISSION

To strengthen the government management on the energy sector, a high-level national energy commission is to be established, with a national bureau of energy set up as its working office under the NDRC.

The new bureau will integrate the NDRC's functions on energy management, the functions of the National Energy Leading Group and the nuclear power management of the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense.

The National Energy Leading Group and its working bodies is to be dissolved.

MINISTRY OF INDUSTRY AND INFORMATION

The new ministry of industry and information will integrate the NDRC's functions on industry and trade management, the functions of the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense except that on nuclear power management, and the functions of the Ministry of Information Industry and the State Council Informatization Office.

A state bureau of science, technology and industry for national defence will be formed under the new ministry. The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration will merge into the new ministry.

The Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National Defense, the Ministry of Information Industry and the State Council Informatization Office will be dissolved.

MINISTRY OF TRANSPORT

The ministry of transport will integrate the functions of the Ministry of Communications and the General Administration of Civil Aviation and the Ministry of Construction's functions on urban passenger transport management.

A state bureau of civil aviation will be formed under the new ministry. The State Post Bureau will be annexed.

The Ministry of Railways will continue to exist. Reforms will be continued on rail transport system.

The Ministry of Communications and the General Administration of Civil Aviation will be dissolved.

MINISTRY OF HUMAN RESOURCES AND SOCIAL SECURITY

The new ministry will integrate the functions of the Ministry of Personnel and the Ministry of Labor and Social Security. A state bureau of civil servants will be established under the new ministry.

The Ministry of Personnel and the Ministry of Labor and Social Securities will be dissolved.

OTHER REFORMS

-- To form a ministry of environmental protection, replacing the State Environmental Protection Administration.

-- To form a ministry of housing and urban-rural construction, replacing the Ministry of Construction.

-- To put the State Food and Drug Administration under the Ministry of Health.

Source:Xinhua



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