A PROPOSAL to drastically streamline the central government will be tabled at the National People's Congress, to be convened in the middle of next month.
Under the thorough-going plan, up to a third of the staff in the State Council's various ministries will be laid off.
Staff in the Textile Industry, Chemical Industry, Light Industry, and Metallurgical Industry ministries will be drastically cut.
According to the pro-Beijing Wen Wei Po newspaper, these production-oriented ministries will be divorced from the Government's administrative organ and become economic entities.
The newspaper quoted a source as saying that the reform plan would also affect the relationship between central and local governments, and the relationship between the Communist Party and the Government.
''How to handle the relationship between the party and the Government is a delicate and difficult issue,'' the source said.
''If reform in government structure is implemented without corresponding moves on the part of the party, the confusion of roles between the Government and the party will continue.'' The source said that, under the reform proposal, the role of the ruling party and its relationship with the Government would be set out clearly by law.
The role of the party would be confined to leadership in ideological and organisational matters.
However, the division between the party and the Government will not be imposed across the board.
The source cited local administration below county level as one of the areas that could not afford a complete severance of the party-government link, because it would be too costly.
On the relationship between the central and local governments, the jurisdiction of the two would be redrawn to avoid duplication of roles.
Under the proposal, a distinction will also be drawn between the roles of administrative organs and the economic entities under their jurisdiction.
With the exception of a small number of economic entities, all would be forced to be self-sufficient and introduce their own management system in line with ordinary enterprises.