China / Government

Targets for cutting red tape set by premier

By Li Xiaokun (China Daily) Updated: 2015-05-13 07:30

Premier Li Keqiang has set goals for the streamlining of administration this year and instructed the government to use big data and cloud computing to innovate in the field of supervision.

"The greatest truths are the simplest. Those in power must not stubbornly pursue their own aims," Li said on Tuesday.

He was speaking during a teleconference held by the State Council to push forward administrative reforms.

Big data refers to amounts of information that are so huge or complex that they require advanced processing technology.

Li said a goal of issuing only one business license to new companies, instead of the current three, should be met by the end of the year. Each business license should bear only one reference number, instead of the current three.

The number of items requiring administrative examination and approval should be cut further, Li said, as should the number of items that have to be handled by intermediary agents.

Complicated procedures in the approval process should be simplified and barriers to registration and other operations by enterprises should be removed, along with unreasonable charges and fees that violate laws or regulations, he added.

Chen Hongyu, a counselor to the Guangdong provincial government, said the new goals reflect the fact that efforts to streamline administration have expanded in both range and depth.

"The government used to focus on cutting the number of items that require approval and delegating the process to lower levels," Chen said. "Now we are moving into more areas."

Li said: "Throughout Chinese history, governments in times of prosperity always followed the principle of streamlining administration, as well as cutting taxation.

"We have to pursue reform with the door open, change the way of the government from 'setting the table' to people 'ordering dishes'."

Dong Keyong, a professor at the School of Public Administration and Policy at Renmin University of China, said Li's administration has made great strides in governance reform, but added: "We still have a lot to do. If we can meet the annual goals set by the premier, China will be able to press ahead with its economic transition."

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