China's third plenum

The Chinese Communist Party's third plenum of the 18th Party Congress traditionally sets the economic tone for the Chinese government's next five-year term.

Sweeping changes needed to tackle graft in China, say analysts

Key elements of party chief Xi Jinping's ongoing anti-graft campaign will be made permanent. Photo: Xinhua

The Communist Party's decision to expand the reach of its internal graft-busters has been praised as a positive step, but analysts warned that more sweeping changes were needed to cure the epidemic of corruption on the mainland.

Sunday, 17 November, 2013, 5:39am

Official homes for cadres would stem China graft: third plenum proposal

Many officials accumulate properties as they move through the ranks. Photo: Reuters

Communist Party leaders across the country could eventually move into official residences as part of a plan to tackle official corruption, although experts said the change would mean little without greater disclosure of officials' wealth.

17 Nov 2013 - 5:39am 1 comment

Plenum decides academics no longer seen as equal to government officials

Staff at Tsinghua University in Beijing will be affected. Photo: AFP

University presidents and other top academics will no longer be treated as the equivalent of government officials under a Communist Party plan to shake up public institutions.

16 Nov 2013 - 4:20am

Most investment projects will no longer need government approval

In a major move to reduce government intervention in the market, the Communist Party this week decided that investment projects would no longer require government approval unless they concern security or key national strategies.

16 Nov 2013 - 7:30am

Communist Party pledges to improve judicial independence, transparency - to a point

Communist Party pledges to improve judicial independence, transparency - to a point

The Communist Party has pledged to try to improve transparency of legal proceedings and finds ways to reduce the direct control of courts and prosecutions by local governments, according to the text of the third plenum's decisions released by Xinhua yesterday.

16 Nov 2013 - 11:04am 4 comments

People's Liberation Army aims to better co-ordinate its operation

Former PLA major general Luo Yuan

The People's Liberation Army will better co-ordinate the work of its different military and geographical branches, according to the resolution of the just concluded Communist Party plenum published yesterday.

16 Nov 2013 - 4:28am

One-child policy to be eased at long last after third plenum resolution

Couples will be allowed to have two children if one of the parents is an only child. Photo: Xinhua

The Communist Party's central committee has responded to long-time calls to relax the one-child policy and to put an end to notorious labour camps.

16 Nov 2013 - 7:29am 7 comments

Evening the odds between state and market

Even before the third plenum of the Communist Party, there was much public discussion about a greater role for the market against the continued dominance of the state in China's economy. According to the plenum communiqué, the market will be given a "decisive" role in the economy, although the state sector will remain dominant.

16 Nov 2013 - 7:30am 1 comment

The Plenum: another leap of faith?

Female hotel attendants in red uniforms jump on Tiananmen Square in Beijing during the Communist Party's 18th Congress in November 2013. Photo: SCMP/Simon Song

We could almost hear the sound of discontent when the curtain of the Plenum was finally drawn. The communiqué from the Plenum contains little detail on reform, but compensates with its lofty ideals. It touches briefly on the market’s decisive role in the economy, recognises the balance between the state and private sectors, as well as the importance of the constitution and the rule of law.

15 Nov 2013 - 3:04pm 1 comment

Party to flesh out reform promises by releasing full version of third plenum communiqué

The markets had hoped for the faster deregulation of interest rates and the exchange rate and the opening-up of the capital account. Photo: AFP

Beijing is expected to release the full transcript of a key policy document signed off at the Communist Party's third plenum within a week after the meeting ended.

15 Nov 2013 - 4:07am 2 comments

Green experts cautious over environment stakeholder 'rights'

The central leadership has repeatedly highlighted the importance of tackling pollution over the past year.

Environmental experts have expressed cautious optimism over the leadership's indication it will set a new price tag on environmental exploitation. But more details on the proposed mechanism were needed before it could be deemed a significant step forward, the experts said.

15 Nov 2013 - 4:15pm

Leaders remain undecided on property tax

China began levying a property tax in Shanghai and Chongqing in 2011. Photo: Reuters

The nation's top leaders had not reached a consensus on expanding pilot trials of property taxes in the near future, despite assertions made at the third plenum that fiscal and tax reforms would be accelerated, according to a senior researcher who has long been involved in the nation's reform planning.

15 Nov 2013 - 4:00am

Chinese fear a new KGB as Beijing sets up powerful national security body

Chinese para-military police stand guard in Tiananmen Square on November 8, 2013. Photo: AFP

China’s decision to set up a powerful national security committee has spurred deep fears in the country of society slipping further into a police state.

16 Nov 2013 - 2:59pm 5 comments

True test of China's reform will be in the details

The true test of the reform credentials of new Communist Party head Xi Jinping and his leadership team is yet to come. Photo: AFP

The communiqué issued after a secretive four-day policy meeting of nearly 400 top mainland officials can be seen either as a glass half full or half empty, depending on the expectations of the beholder.

14 Nov 2013 - 3:24pm

China stocks fall after party issues vague communiqué following plenum

China stocks fall after party issues vague communiqué following plenum

Chinese stocks saw their steepest decline in nearly two months after a key Communist Party meeting failed to deliver bold and detailed reform plans to sustain the growth of the world's second-largest economy.

14 Nov 2013 - 4:31pm 1 comment