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China to adopt new ways to get advice, suggestions from NPC deputies and CPPCC members to ensure their views are heard

Zhang Yue
Updated: May 13,2020 11:05 PM    english.www.gov.cn

The State Council’s executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang on May 13 adopted plans for government departments to consider the views and suggestions from NPC deputies and CPPCC members during this year’s two sessions.

The third plenary session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), the country's top legislature, will open on May 22 in Beijing, which was announced at the recent session of the NPC Standing Committee on April 29. The third plenary session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the nation's top political advisory body, will start on May 21.

“It is important for the government to readily subject itself to public oversight in line with legal procedures, and heed the views and proposals by NPC deputies and CPPCC members during this year’s two sessions. The special background this year makes consensus-building all the more necessary, and particularly important for firming up our confidence in advancing development,” Premier Li said.

The meeting noted that each year, the heads of State Council departments would sit in or observe the meetings of NPC deputies and CPPCC members during the two sessions to hear and address their advice and suggestions on government work. This reflects the government’s readiness to subject itself to public oversight, and is an integral part of government efforts to build public consensus and advance sound and democratic decision-making.

The challenging situation this year requires that the government do more to pool the wisdom and strength of NPC deputies and CPPCC members, and translate their views and proposals into policy measures to overcome difficulties and improve government performance.

Given the need for continued COVID-19 containment, the meeting called for adopting new ways for taking in views and suggestions from NPC deputies and CPPCC members, including via video-link, phone calls and the internet. These views and suggestions would help the government learn more about the situation on the ground, especially about the hopes of market players and the general public.

“NPC deputies and CPPCC members are broadly representative as they come from across the country and all walks of life. They provide an important channel for the government to learn more about the conditions of the people and their expectations. Given this year’s containment requirements, we must develop new ways to hear their views,” Premier Li said.

Based on this year’s arrangements for the annual sessions, the meeting decided that officials of government departments concerned will attend through video link the break-out sessions of NPC deputies deliberating on the government work report. The departments are required to study carefully and provide feedback on the views and suggestions within their respective purview.

The meeting directed each government department to set up a special task force headed by its leading official and a hot-line for NPC deputies and CPPCC members operated by designated staff members. The contents of these calls should be duly taken down and the subject matters addressed and responded to before the two sessions close.

The State Council General Office is required to comb through the minutes of the meetings of NPC deputies and CPPCC members and carefully study all the advice and recommendations concerning government work. Where actions are called for, the General Office should swiftly bring the relevant issues to the attention of the competent departments, and see to it that replies are made.

The meeting urged government departments to promptly address matters of extensive concern to the general public. These measures and the careful handling of the proposals of NPC deputies and CPPCC members will help make government work more effective and responsive to public concerns.

“The government must not let changes in the format be a hindrance to its heeding the views and suggestions from NPC deputies and CPPCC members,” Premier Li said.

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