Powerful bureau to run city's transport

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 16 April, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 16 April, 2003, 12:00am

A new transport commission will be established in Beijing in a pilot scheme that could be the forerunner of a shake-up in the central government ministry.

Beijing municipal government would dismantle the communications and highway departments, traffic command centre and the railway safety administration office, with their various functions going to the new commission, the Beijing Youth Daily reported.

The restructuring is part of a shake-up in the Beijing municipal government which will see 45 departments abolished, reducing the total from 97 to 52.

The establishment of the new transport commission is seen as a sign that the central government is considering merging the national ministries of railway, communications and aviation into one body.

Mao Shoulong, a professor at the School of Public Administration under the People's University in Beijing, said the Beijing shake-up was aimed at aiding co-ordination between different government departments.

The new commission is expected to be a heavyweight department that will be able to demand that other departments co-operate with it, Professor Mao said.

He said up until now transport policy had come under the jurisdiction of different departments. Since no department was strong enough to demand co-operation, no one would take responsibility for solving problems.