Top judge vows to improve judicial capacity
China's Supreme Justice and President of the Supreme People's Court Xiao Yang vowed to improve the country's judicial capacity to meet the requirements of economic development at an on-going national court meeting.
In a keynote speech to the national higher court presidents meeting, held in Beijing from December 16 to 18, Xiao said judicial capacity mainly includes "striking hard" on severe criminal cases and cracking down on financial and economic fraud, intellectual property infringement, human rights violations in judicial fields and official power abuse.
China's per capita GDP exceeded US$1,000 last year. It is widely accepted that when a country's per capita GDP stands between US$1,000-3,000, it is likely to be in a transitional period featuring a variety of sharp social contradictions.
Xiao acknowledged that China was undergoing such a period now and that the number of court cases related to state-owned company reforms, salary in arrears, illegal land acquisition and illegal housebreaking, has risen dramatically.
"During such a period, the country needs judicial capacity improvement," he said.
He said the country's policy of "striking hard" on serious criminal cases has proven effective to safeguard social stability and will be continued.
He also said that Chinese courts will crack down on financial and economic
fraud and crimes, on smuggling, fake goods production and intellectual property
infringement, and on power abuse, dereliction of duty and graft.
Statistics show that Chinese courts dealt with 8.08 million criminal, civil and administrative cases in 2003, 4.59 million more than in 1993.
The number and variety of cases has risen remarkably in China in recent years, but the number of judges and clerks remains unchanged, causing difficulties for courts to ensure timely trials.
Jiang Yunchang, vice-president of the Supreme People's Court said Saturday
that 12,782 judges and clerks will be recruited for local courts, especially for
local courts at the grassroots levels.