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China Daily Website

Calls for legislation for govt info transparency

Updated: 2012-12-14 14:44
( Xinhua)

BEIJING - Experts from home and abroad have suggested creating laws that will force the government to make more information public and thus promote transparency at a symposium held on Thursday.

Experts said all governmental bodies should coordinate the relationship between the regulations regarding government transparency and other laws, such as those concerning state secrets.

"Civil servants who do not provide government information that is supposed to be public will be mildly punished," said Wang Xixin, a professor at the Peking University Law School.

"However, they may be criminally liable if they expose state secrets. Therefore, the degree to which government information is made public is very important and the amount of state secrets should be reduced," Wang added.

Fang Shirong, a professor at the Zhongnan University of Economics and Law, suggested increasing accountability and adding greater detail to rules regarding the provision of government information.

The accountability system plays an important role in the provision of government information, said Laura Neuman, manager of the Global Access to Information Initiative of the US Carter Center.

"The mindset for the civil servants should also be changed," said Gao Qinwei, a professor at the Central University of Finance and Economics.

Government bodies should carry out assessments for the release of information and create relevant guidelines for their staff, he added.