A POWER struggle among China's top agencies is blocking the smooth passage of the country's first securities law, according to a specialist. The source said in Beijing yesterday that the struggle for jurisdiction among the various agencies of the State Council - China's cabinet - was largely to blame for the delay. ''The Ministry of Finance, the State Planning Commission, the State Commission for Economy Restructuring . . . the authorities now involved in the sector . . . are fighting for their own interests,'' he said. There were discrepancies in the draft of the securities law because consensus between the parties had not yet been reached, he said. The main disagreements were over the establishment of a securities administrative body and over-the-counter trading. Much of the debate has focused on how to establish a securities administrative body because it relates to the distribution of power among the agencies involved in the securities sector. The specialist said the falling stock market had given rise to the disagreements. ''I don't have confidence that the securities law will come out this year,'' he said. It had been expected that the law would be passed in the first half of this year. The source said the seventh draft of the law had been revised and was still being examined. Government departments from national to city level were ''all having their say''. But it is understood that the aim is to give the securities administrative body final jurisdiction in the securities sector. ''It's a problem of who will have what authority [in the future securities sector],'' one legal practitioner said in Beijing yesterday. He cited as an example the relationship between the People's Bank of China and the securities watchdog. ''Previously, everything regarding banking, issuance and futures was controlled by the People's Bank of China - the central bank. ''Then certain authority was delegated to China's securities watchdog after its establishment,'' he said. It is understood that this transfer of power has given rise to issues of distribution of power between the two - and whether they are satisfied with the distribution. The same applies to various government agencies. For instance, the restructuring of companies, enabling them to become joint-stock entities, is under control of the State Commission for Economy Restructuring. Share issues fall under the hierarchy of the State Planning Commission, while share issues involving foreigners are the responsibility of the State Economic and Trade Commission. The issue of bonds is under the control of the People's Bank of China, while state-held shares are controlled by the National Administrative Bureau of State-owned Property. The China Securities newspaper yesterday reported that China's planned securities law was bogged down in debate and was unlikely to be passed this year unless the country's legislative programme was drastically altered. It has been suggested that the heavy workload of the National People's Congress has contributed to the delay in the passage of the law.