The NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) on Friday released its annual legislative plan for 2018. As usual, the plan is divided into two sections—the first listing specific legislative projects slated for discussion at the NPCSC’s remaining five sessions in 2018, and second setting forth general guiding principles for its legislative work this year. We will discuss only the first part in this post.
UPDATE (Jan. 19, 2018): This post has been updated with links to an English translation of the draft Heroes and Martyrs Protection Law.
UPDATE (Jan. 4, 2018): This post has been updated with links to English translations of the draft revisions to the Procurators Law and Judges Law, and to the draft People’s Assessors Law.
The NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) on December 29 released the following draft laws for public comments until January 27, 2018:
- Procurators Law (Draft Revision) 检察官法修订草案 (ENGLISH)
- Judges Law (Draft Revision) 法官法修订草案 (ENGLISH)
- People’s Assessors Law (Draft) 人民陪审员法草案 (ENGLISH)
- International Criminal Justice Assistance Law (Draft) 国际刑事司法协助法草案
- Basic Healthcare and Health Promotion Law (Draft) 基本医疗卫生与健康促进法草案
- Heroes and Martyrs Protection Law (Draft) 英雄烈士保护法草案 (ENGLISH)
- Soil Pollution Prevention and Control Law (Draft for 2nd Deliberation) 土壤污染防治法草案二次审议稿
All linked files are PDF documents in Chinese. English translations will be posted here when they become available. The NPCSC has also released explanations of these draft laws, which can be viewed at this link.
To submit comments online, please refer to these instructions. The “Occupations” dropdown list for the draft revisions to the Judges Law and the Procurators Law includes a new top item: “Judges, procurators, lawyers, or other legal practitioners” (法官检察官律师等法律从业人员).
Comments can also be mailed to the NPCSC Legislative Affairs Commission (全国人大常委会法制工作委员会) at the following address:
Chinese: 北京市西城区前门西大街1号 邮编：100805
English: No. 1 West Qianmen Avenue, Xicheng District, Beijing 100805
Please clearly write “[BILL NAME IN CHINESE]征求意见” on the envelope.
UPDATE (Dec. 23, 2017): The NPCSC has released the finalized agenda and daily schedule of the ongoing session. This agenda, unlike the agendas of past December sessions since the early 1990s, does not include a draft decision to convene the NPC session of the following year (which would be the 1st Session of the 13th NPC). This is highly unusual. But the significance (if any) of the absence of that decision is not clear at this point. Elsewhere, in a report on the draft Supervision Law (as reported by state media), the NPC Law Committee seemed to be deliberately avoiding referring explicitly to the 1st Session of the 13th NPC: It recommended that the NPCSC submit the draft Supervision Law to “a session of the NPC” (全国人民代表大会会议) for deliberation, short of identifying the specific NPC session (unlike what it had done before). Through this update we merely wish to point out these irregularities. It is still premature to speculate whether the 2018 NPC session will convene as usual on March 5 because the Council of Chairmen could always add a convening decision to the agenda (though it doesn’t explain why it hasn’t done so already). In any event, we will find out on December 27 when the ongoing NPCSC session closes.
As predicted, the Council of Chairmen met on Thursday (December 14) to set the dates and propose an agenda for the second last session of the 12th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC). According Xinhua’s report of the Council’s meeting, an astonishing 12 legislative bills (among others) were submitted to the upcoming six-day NPCSC session (December 22–27) for deliberation, the most ever since the start of the 12th NPC. Most of these bills are worth paying close attention to because of their subject matters, as we will discuss below.
Starting in December 2017, we will publish the NPC Calendar as monthly blog posts instead of a widget in the Blog’s sidebar and a series of tweets—however short the Calendar for a particular month may be (in other words, we are going to do this SCOTUSblog-style). This change will make it easier for us to (if necessary) provide a lot more details about NPC-related events each month. The NPC Calendar widget in the sidebar will remain, but will contain a lot less information than the blog post versions so as to provide our readers with a quick overview of NPC-related information each month.
The 12th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) will convene for its 31st—and the second last—session in late December. The Council of Chairmen is expected to meet next week to decide on the date and agenda of the 31st Session.
The 12th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) today finally released its much-anticipated legislative and supervisory plans for 2017. Here we will focus on the legislative plan, leaving the supervisory plan for another blog post. According to the 2017 legislative plan, a total of 23 legislative projects are tentatively scheduled (as the plan is subject to change) for the remaining four NPCSC sessions this year, with dozens more listed as preparatory projects. Among them, there is certainly no lack of blockbuster legislations, whether relating to China’s judicial reform, anti-corruption drive, environmental protection, or economic and social development in general.
The 12th NPCSC will convene for its next session, which will be the last one in 2016, from December 19 to 25, the Council of Chairmen decided on Monday. The Council also proposed a preliminary agenda for the 25th Session, which features six legislative bills, three authorizations of reforms, and several items pertaining to next year’s NPC plenary session and the upcoming 13th NPC. As usual, in the first part of this installment of Session Watch, we’ll take a look at the agenda of the upcoming session.