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China Daily Website

Offices to unite in fight against graft

Updated: 2012-09-11 07:16
( China Daily)

China has set up its first "integrated" anti-corruption bureau, with the aim to prevent graft through a comprehensive system of shared information and resources.

The new Office Against Corruption is in Hengqin New Area, an island in Guangdong province close to Hong Kong and Macao.

Four departments will handle discipline and supervision, and monitor audits and reports of negligence. Usually, these functions fall under various authorities.

"By integrating these functions, we can build a platform to share information and resources to fight and prevent corruption," China News Service quoted a spokesman for the Guangdong Party discipline authority as saying. "The departments will never have to fight on their own.

"The office is a trial to shift the functional departments from 'coordinated' methods to integrated," he said.

Hengqin, which falls under the jurisdiction of Zhuhai, will maintain its innovative momentum and "borrow from the experiences in Hong Kong and Macao to build a role model for others to follow" , Zhuhai Party chief Li Jia said.

A bridge east of Hengqin connects the island with Macao, while another bridge in the north leads to Hong Kong.

In 2009, the State Council included Hengqin in the Zhuhai Special Economic Zone and made a State-level plan to develop it as an island connecting Hong Kong and Macao within 10 to 15 years. Hengqin is envisioned as an ideal place for business startups and residence, offering knowledge-intensive facilities and information technologies.

The government will also leverage its status inside the special economic zone to research and legislate regulations to fight corruption, said Ye Zhen, deputy director of the Administrative Committee of Hengqin New Area.

The office was opened on Saturday.

A Guangdong Party discipline official said the innovative structure also saves human and financial recourses.

Lei Zhiyu, an official with the Zhuhai Commission Office for Public Sector Reform, said on Monday that authorities will define and detail the missions, roles, responsibilities and structure of the office against corruption in the coming months.

Publicity departments of Hengqin and Zhuhai declined China Daily's interview request on Monday.

Mao Shoulong, a professor of governance at Renmin University of China, said the convergence of the administrative, judicial, audit and Party functions together would improve cooperation and increase the forces fighting corruption.

However, Mao said authorities should think about how to turn the convergence into real synergy.

He added as the departments used to operate independently, it is important to keep the independence and professionalism from each other's interference.