Officials to gain experience at grassroots levels

13:11, May 05, 2011      

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More than 300 young officials from central government departments, State-owned enterprises and the Beijing municipal government will work in the city's subsidiary offices, local personnel officials said.

A new plan will take selected young officials, who must be no older than 31, and transfer them to villages, townships and sub-district offices, where they will work as deputy heads. A senior official with the municipal Party committee's organization department told China Daily that the decision to try out such a program on so large a scale is "unprecedented".

"This will help to fulfill the Communist Party of China Central Committee's requirement to foster young leaders," the official, surnamed Yang, said on Wednesday.

"Most of these young people lack work experience in grassroots public services and we are providing them a great opportunity to enrich their careers."

Many of the officials now in charge of villages, townships and sub-districts in Beijing are approaching the end of their terms. The posts they occupy will be transferred to others by the end of September.

The city government, after the city's people's congress and its political advisory body had held meetings in January, made a detailed plan to recruit and train young officials to move into the subsidiary offices. Its goal in doing so was to ensure basic services are being delivered in the best way possible and to give young officials work experience to make them better able to fulfill their duties.

The candidates have various views about the opportunities.

Many people, including Zhang Peng, deputy head of a local university's student office, deemed them to be "for the good". Others, though, have some personal concerns.

Liu Bing, another candidate from a central department, told Beijing Times that the plan has left him confused. Personnel officials, he said, have not told him what salary and benefits come with the new job or whether he can return to his current job after his service in a subsidiary office ends.

Yang said candidates can get the new posts by applying for them directly or seek a recommendation to them from their superiors and without taking an exam.

He said the means used to select the appointees will be transparent and fair for every candidate.

Ren Jianming, a professor from the School of Public Policy and Management at Tsinghua University, said he believes the plan is an excellent opportunity for young officials to obtain work experience and deepen their understanding of public service.

"This will help to form candidates for future leadership positions in the city government or even in higher governments."

He said taking educated and energetic young officials out of the central government and moving them to smaller offices will improve the management of such offices and the general quality of public services.

Source:China Daily
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