UPDATE (July 31, 2020): Today, the Hong Kong Chief Executive officially announced the postponement of the Legislative Council elections to next fall. The central government said in a statement that it would seek a decision by the NPCSC on the one-year vacancy of the Legislative Council after its current term expires on September 30.
We did not wake up today expecting to write this blogpost, yet here we are. On Wednesday, July 29, the Council of Chairpersons decided to convene the 21st session of the 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC)—much to our surprise—from August 8 to 11. For the past three terms, the NPCSC’s regular sessions began only during the last ten days of each month in which it was scheduled to meet (with one exception). And this upcoming session bears all the indications of a regular (August) session: its four-day length, a full batch of bills to review, and the State Council’s mid-year reports on budget implementation and economic development (which are heard in August).
UPDATE (Nov. 5, 2019): This post has been updated with a link to our guide to navigating the NPCSC’s new online public comments system.
UPDATE (Nov. 4, 2019): This post has been updated with links to unofficial English translations of the draft Community Corrections Law and of the draft revisions to the Minors Protection Law and the Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Law.
All linked files are PDF documents in Chinese. English translations will be provided if and when available. The accompanying explanations of these drafts can be read here (PDF).
The NPCSC also reviewed a draft Biosecurity Law [生物安全法] at its latest session, but did not also release this bill for public comments. It is unclear whether and when it will do so.
To submit comments online, please refer to this guide. The “Occupations” dropdown menus for the draft revisions to the Minors Protection Law and the Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Law include these options: “minors” [未成年人]; “minors’ parents or other guardians” [未成年人的父母或者其他监护人]; “professional social workers” [专业社工]; “teachers” [教师]; “lawyers” [律师]; “employees of villagers’ committees or urban residents’ committees, or community workers” [村委会、居委会或者社区工作人员]; “employees of governmental organs” [政府机关工作人员]; “judges” [法官]; “procurators” [检察官]; and “employees of mass organizations” [群团组织工作人员]. The dropdown menus inexplicably do not include an “other” option.
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:
The Council of Chairpersons decided on Monday (October 14) to convene the 14th session of the 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) from October 21 to 26. The NPCSC will consider eight legislative bills plus three draft decisions on important legal issues during the upcoming six-day session. A quick rundown follows.