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China details reform decision-making process

Updated: 11 19 , 2013 14:20
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BEIJING -- Details about how decisions were reached on major issues of reform emerged on Monday.

More than 300 reform measures were adopted unanimously at the Third Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Nov. 12. Published in full text on Nov. 15, the document plots the course of all aspects of China's next round of reform.

In April, after the new leadership was elected, the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee decided that the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee would deal with comprehensive reform and make important decisions.

The Political Bureau decided to found a drafting group, headed by President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee. It was the first time since 2000 that the Party's top leader had led the drafting of a document to be tabled at a plenary session.

On April 20, the CPC Central Committee informed party organs and governments at the central level and of all provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions, the armed forces and all non-governmental organizations that their opinions would be solicited. In less than a month, 118 items and proposals were gathered.

From its first meeting on April 24, the drafting group of about 60 members worked hard for 200 days under the leadership of Xi until the opening of the plenum on Nov. 9.

At the first meeting of the drafting group, Xi asked them to make a strategic plan for deepening reforms in all aspects, based on a good understanding of the country's new circumstances, reality, missions and people's expectation.

At a number of meetings from April to July, Xi instructed the drafting group to produce a landmark document that could be tested by the people, the real world and the times.

The drafting group tried their best not to include measures that were too general or had been put forwards before.

During the six months, the Standing Committee met three times and the Political Bureau members met twice to discuss the draft. All meetings were presided over by Xi.

Besides Xi, other members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee also contributed to the drafting, with research and important proposals.

On July 25, the first draft decision was submitted to the seven members of the Standing Committee. It was later amended a number of times.

On Sept. 4, the draft was distributed to more than 100 departments at the central and local levels for opinions. Former Party and state leaders also contributed to the draft.

On Sept. 17, Xi hosted a meeting with representatives of non-communist parties, of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce and those without party affiliation, in order to hear their suggestions.

From Sept. 4, the drafting group received a total of 2,564 proposals and more than 40 percent were included in the final document.

On Oct. 29, the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau reviewed the draft and decided to submit it to the third plenary session.

On Nov. 9 when the third plenary session opened, Xi explained the decision. In the following four days, 204 members of the CPC Central Committee and 169 alternate members discussed the document in depth.

On the evening of Nov. 11, the members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee met one last time to hear the proposals gathered during the session and decide on a new draft that went to panel discussions on the morning of Nov. 12.

On the afternoon of Nov. 12, the final version of the decision was distributed to every participant and put for the vote.

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