NPCSC Takes No Further Action on Foreign Investment Law (for Now), Adopts Two Tax Laws & Codifies Civil Service Reform

The 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) concluded its seventh session on Saturday with the adoption of a series of laws and decisions. Below we will take a brief look at each.

Continue reading “NPCSC Takes No Further Action on Foreign Investment Law (for Now), Adopts Two Tax Laws & Codifies Civil Service Reform”

NPCSC Session Watch: Foreign Investment, Patent, Resource Tax, Local Government Debt & More

The 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) will convene for its last session in 2018 from December 23 to 29, the Council of Chairmen decided on Friday. This session is another of those end-of-year, week-long NPCSC sessions that we have come to love (and definitely not hate). We counted 14 legislative bills plus several more decisions and reports on the agenda. And there is absolutely no festivity-related reason why we would rather not work around that period. Because we expect six of those bills to pass on December 29, we will publish summaries of them after the session concludes rather than in this session preview. Here is our rundown on the agenda.

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NPC Calendar: December 2018 (UPDATED)

UPDATE (Dec. 5, 2018): The State Council’s executive meeting, its top decision-making body, approved a draft amendment to the Patent Law [专利法] on Wednesday (December 5). The draft amendment may have replaced a draft revision to the Law that was released for public comments in 2015 for it seems to make similar changes as the draft revision (based on the brief press release of the State Council’s meeting). The NPCSC will likely review the draft amendment at its upcoming session.


The 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) is expected to convene for its seventh session late this month. The Council of Chairmen is expected to meet in mid-December to decide on the dates and agenda of the session.

According to the NPCSC’s 2018 legislative plan, the following bills have been tentatively scheduled for the upcoming session:

The draft Farmland Occupancy Tax Law [耕地占用税法] and Vehicle Acquisition Tax Law [车辆购置税法] will likely return for their second (and likely final) round of deliberations.

The State Council may also submit for review a draft Vaccine Administration Law [疫苗管理法] (on which it solicited public comments for two weeks in November).

The pilot reform to combine the maternity insurance fund and the basic medical insurance fund will expire on December 31. We expect the State Council to either request an extension of the pilot or submit an amendment to the Social Insurance Law [社会保险法].

The pilot reform that allows the rights to use cultivated land and house sites [宅基地] to be mortgaged will also expire on December 31. The State Council may submit amendments to the Property Law [物权法] and the Guaranty Law [担保法] to codify the reform. Alternatively, it may request yet another extension—the pilot was already extended once for one year in late 2017—until the Civil Code (which will replace those two laws) is enacted.

Another land reform pilot—which allows the transfer of the right to use collectively owned land for construction [集体建设用地使用权]; adjusts the approval authority over house sites; and revises the standards for compensating the expropriation of collectively owned land—will expire, again, on December 31. The State Council will likely submit an amendment to the Land Management Law [土地管理法] and possibly also an amendment to the Urban Real Estate Administration Law [城市房地产管理法] (certain provisions of these two laws are being suspended during the pilot).

Lastly, a pilot reform of the civil service system will expire on January 1, 2019. As the NPCSC is already reviewing a draft revision to the Civil Servants Law [公务员法] that codifies the reform, we expect it to extend the pilot until the revision is adopted.

The NPCSC is also expected to adopt a decision to convene the 2019 NPC session (the 2nd Session of the 13th NPC) at its upcoming meeting.


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NPCSC Solicits Public Comments on Draft Civil Code, Amendment to Criminal Procedure Law & Three Other Bills (UPDATED)

UPDATE (Sept. 5, 2018): The comments deadline has been extended to October 4, 2018 for all draft laws except the draft Separate Parts of the Civil Code, which will be open for public comments until November 3, 2018.


The NPC Standing Committee is now soliciting public comments on the following draft laws until October 2, 2018 (the deadline is likely not finalized):

All linked files are PDF documents in Chinese. English translations will be linked to if and when available. The accompanying explanations of these drafts can be read here (PDF).

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NPCSC Session Watch: Separate Parts of Civil Code, Tax Bills, Criminal Procedure, and More

The Council of Chairmen met on August 17 and decided that the 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) will meet for its fifth session from August 27 to 31. The session will consider at least seven legislative bills, including the much-anticipated draft Separate Parts of China’s first Civil Code, draft E-Commerce Law, and three tax bills. As usual, below we take a look at the legislative bills on the session’s agenda.

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Tracking China’s Progress Towards Law-Based Taxation

UPDATE (Sept. 8, 2018): This post has been updated based on the 13th NPCSC five-year legislative plan.


China currently collects 18 types of taxes. They will generate an estimated total of 8 trillion RMB in revenue for the Central Government in 2018. But only six of them—providing only about a third of the central tax revenue—are imposed by laws [法律] enacted by the legislature, the NPC or its Standing Committee (NPCSC). The rest are governed only by interim regulations [暂行条例] adopted by the State Council—the Central Government itself. The enormous taxing power the State Council now wields was in fact granted by the NPC in 1984. Now, over three decades later, the NPC is reclaiming that power by gradually elevating the interim regulations into laws, with an eye to complete the process by 2020. In this post, we will explain why the NPC made the power grant in the first place and discuss what it has recently been doing to reassert its control over taxation.

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NPC Calendar: August 2018

August 1 is the tenth anniversary of the entry into force of the Anti-Monopoly Law (反垄断法).

The 13th NPC Standing Committee (NPCSC) is expected to convene for its fifth session later this month. The Council of Chairmen is expected to meet in mid-August to decide on the dates and agenda of the session.

The following draft laws have been tentatively scheduled for this upcoming session according to the NPCSC’s 2018 legislative plan:

It is possible that the draft amendment to the Criminal Procedure Law (刑事诉讼法) would be submitted for another round of deliberation as well.

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NPC Standing Committee Releases 2018 Legislative Plan

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.

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