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China's legislature ends annual session

03-14-2012 13:54 BJT Special Report:2012 NPC & CPPCC Sessions |

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The 11th National People’s Congress has wrapped up its fifth and final session, after completing its ten-day agenda. The nearly 3,000 NPC deputies have approved the reports on the Government’s Work, Social Development and Budget. They also adopted revisions to the Criminal Procedure Law and one on re-apportionment.

Saving memories of the NPC - In just over a week, deputies have finished their business for this session, the last for the five-year term. For most deputies, this is their last chance to vote.

The closing meeting of the Fifth Session of the 11th National People's Congress (NPC) is
held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, March 14, 2012.
(Xinhua/Zheng Wei)

Li Zhaoling, NPC deputy from Beijing said, "What impressed me is that this NPC session has attached greater importance to making new laws relating people’s livelihoods.”

Ma Kening, NPC deputy from Shaanxi, said, "The NPC has helped form the socialist system of laws, yet it should strengthen supervision to make sure all laws are better implemented.”

By unanimous vote, lawmakers approved the Government’s Work Report as well as the national economic and social development plan, which sets the target of 7.5 percent GDP growth in 2012. It’s the first time in eight years for a target lower than 8 percent.

Yang Qingyun, NPC deputy from Chongqing, said, "Usually 8 percent should be the minimum rate to guarantee the increase of the labor force and employment. 7.5 should be a signal for leaving greater room for China’s structural and pattern transformation to a more sustained economy, rather than sheer speed.”

Still, Yang Qingyun predicts that the GDP growth this year will continue to rise above 8 percent. This year’s session is under intense scrutiny, as the economy faces challenges from the European Financial crisis. The government plans various measures to boost domestic consumption, like introducing more private capital into state-owned enterprises in industry and finance, and to effectively control CPI within 4 percent.

Deputies passed the revised Criminal Procedure Law, which included more than 100 changes. For the first time, evidence gained through forced confession will not be allowed. And respecting and protecting human rights will be written into law.

Yu Wen, NPC deputy from Shaanxi, said, "It’ a crucial step towards the rule of law, and a revolutionary move to respect human rights”

Also approved, is the draft decision for Election of New NPC Deputies. Now, a rural deputy represents 4 times the population of an urban deputy. Next year will see equal representation.

Han Deyun, NPC deputy from Chongqing, said, "To eliminate differences between the rural and urban areas, like education and employment, through the amendment of the Electoral law, bears a revolutionary significance.”

President Hu Jintao and other top leaders attended the closing. Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, Wu Bangguo, presided. The legislators also adopted resolutions on the national development plan, budgets, and the work reports of the Standing Committee, the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate.

This NPC has a special significance, coming in the last year of the Hu Jintao--Wen Jiabao administration. The session has given a rough idea of what these leaders hope to accomplish during the rest of their term. Amid the global financial crisis, how to maintain economic growth, while solving a series of social problems, to satisfy the general public, remains a challenging task. China’s new state leaders and ministerial heads will all be elected when lawmakers meet again next March.

 

Editor:Zhang Dan |Source: CNTV.CN

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