State council has no right to impose tax, says NPC deputy

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 09 March, 2013, 12:50pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 09 March, 2013, 2:07pm

Zhao Dongling is not as famous as Jackie Chan and other celebrity NPC and CPPCC delegates attending sessions in Beijing this week. But her bold proposal to deprive China’s State Council of the power to impose taxes has won her national applause and support.

Zhao, an award-winning screenwriter and NPC deputy from China’s northern Shandong province, said taxes should be collected by the People’s Congress, the highest legislative body in China stipulated by China’s constitution - instead of the State Council - the country’s chief administrative authority.

Zhao said she was bothered after finding out only three of China’s current 18 categories of taxes were proposed by NPC, while the rest were all imposed and collected by China’s State Council.

“Without public hearings, new taxes were often imposed after the issuing of a single government decree," she said.

Zhao had found supporters and swiftly collected 31 signatures by Friday. A proposal can become a legislative bill after it is signed by at least 30 members of the NPC.

“I plan to submit the bill on the 10th,” she announced on Sina Weibo. 

After the bill is submitted, the Presidum of NPC will decide whether to put it on the session’s agenda. A session’s agenda then needs to be deliberated, reviewed, and approved by the presidium before voted on by all deputies. A bill becomes law if more than half the deputies vote for it, according to NPC’s official website.

Netizens all over China are supporting Zhao over what they call a "consciencious" act.

“The names of Zhao Dongling and the other 31 deputies will be written in history,” wrote a blogger on Sina Weibo, China’s twitter-like service.

“I support you whole heartedly - the government is wealthy, but we people are poor,” wrote another."It is time to change this."

China’s State Council announced plans to impose a 20 per cent capital gains tax on home sale profits earlier this month - a measure to cool China’s residential property market. The move has caused public outcry across the country. Many bluntly called the new tax “stealing”.