A Look at China’s New Structural Reforms

Chinese lawmakers have announced sweeping structural reforms in the country’s top regulatory bodies, from finance to big data.

Here are some of the key changes announced in recent days at the National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing:

– Reshuffles in the Ministry of Science and Technology –

ChinaChina’s Ministry of Science and Technology will be reorganized according to plans unveiled by the State Council, with more resources allocated to manufacturing and research as Beijing strives for self-sufficiency in the face of foreign attempts at “containment and suppression.”

The reshuffle is intended to help China achieve self-sufficiency in high-tech sectors that have recently been subject to intense global competition, such as semiconductors and artificial intelligence.

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Oversight will also be strengthened through the Central Science and Technology Commission, a new body that will “strengthen the party’s leadership in the sector,” state media China Daily reported.

– New National Data Bureau in China –

Beijing will also set up a new institution tasked with managing digital resources, previously under the control of multiple regulators.

The National Data Bureau (NDB) will be responsible for “coordinating and facilitating the establishment of the data infrastructure” and “integrating, sharing, developing and utilizing data resources,” said Xiao Jie, the new Secretary of the State Council. general

This new institution, which has long sought to boost China’s international competitiveness in the digital arena, will help Beijing tap into the vast data sets generated by the country’s 1.4 billion people.

Public statements by the authorities indicate that the NDB will be given an extensive scope of work, although digital security-related responsibilities are expected to remain under the umbrella of China’s Cyberspace Administration.

– More financial oversight –

Another major reform announced is the creation of a new central financial regulator to replace the existing China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission.

The new supervisory body will be aimed at streamlining the authorities’ control over the financial sector, eliminating regulatory loopholes between existing institutions and placing it under the direct purview of the State Council.

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Beijing is playing a more active role in domestic financial management after serious risks to the Chinese economy in recent years, including problems in the real estate sector and worsening trade ties with the West.

The newly created regulator is expected to help the authorities in their recent efforts to rein in the Chinese business giants.

– Speeding up the legislative process in China –

According to Xinhua, China’s parliament has also passed reforms to allow the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress – the governing body of the legislature – to pass laws after just one review session.

Amendments to the Law on Legislation will expedite the process of lawmaking in certain emergency circumstances, although details of which situations will fall under this definition have not yet been made public.

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