Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) have drawn limited private interest and sparked an interagency turf war. PPP was repeatedly promoted by Li Keqiang 李克强 in State Council executive meetings throughout 2016. Lou Jiwei 楼继伟 former finance minister pushed for exploring mandatory PPPs and fought to control their supervision.
Wang Yi 王毅 Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) minister blamed Taiwan for playing petty politics after President-elect Trump’s call with Tsai Ing-wen 蔡英文 on 2 December 2016. Another potentially destabilising factor emerged with Global Times reporting an apparent secret pact to directly share military information signed between South Korea and Japan on 23 November 2016.
The one-year transitional period for cross-border e-commerce regulations, announced in May, will be extended to end 2017. This gives enterprises time to prepare and government time to adjust policies to enterprise and industry needs, notes Zhang Li 张莉 MofCOM E-commerce Research Institute.
The Trump shock brought the Party and many of its critics into agreement: Pax Americana is finished, and the ‘America in decline’ narrative suddenly seems vindicated. Global Times said the election proves Churchill wrong about democracy being the worst system of government, ‘except for all the other forms’. Some see the dawn of a ‘post-hegemonic’ era, with China shaping a new multilateral order.
The state launched its ‘Settle in the city plan’ to give 100 million migrants urban hukou by 2020. Aiming to ‘deeply urbanise’ migrants, the plan will ease urban hukou and residence permit restrictions, bringing migrants into urban social services, and incentivise cities to grant hukou through linking land, people and money.
governance: coordinating health reforms, Cybersecurity Law passes, first steps in the ‘post-hegemonic’ era
Central government issued ‘Opinions on deepening pharmaceutical and healthcare reform’, approved by the Deepening Reform Leading Group in late August 2016. Consolidating several recent pilots, they call for new pricing systems to wean hospitals off pharmaceutical sales, management changes to increase hospital autonomy, salary systems that align doctor incomes with patient interests, and further promotion of multi-level and private care.
A rare economy-focused Q3 politburo meeting put restraining asset bubbles top of the Q4 agenda, now that official 2016 GDP growth is set to surpass 6.5 percent. Within a week of the meeting, the insurance regulator (CIRC) moved to restrict insurance firms from investing in real estate-related products, and the two stock exchanges prohibited using funds raised through real estate bonds to buy land.
Increasing average life expectancy from 76.34 in 2015 to 79 and lowering infant mortality from eight to five per 1,000 births are the aims of the ‘Healthy China 2030’ plan. Promoting healthy lifestyles, the government will push for improving agricultural production standards and reducing heavy metal pollution, setting up an environmental information disclosure platform and universal food safety reporting network.
The much anticipated Sixth Plenum wrapped up, with Xi becoming the first incumbent Party chief to crown himself ‘core’. Within a few days, his affiliates occupied key posts, with his doctrine aired at even higher frequency. Yet it remains to be seen whether this is a total victory, given a sweeping ban on any ‘cult of personality’ was also inserted into the final Communique.
The 5-year plan for agricultural modernisation, released 20 October 2016, marks a shift in food security strategy, moving agriculture from increasing grain output to improving production sustainability, says Han Changfu 韩长赋 minister of agriculture.
In line with the 2014 Fourth Plenum Resolution, overhaul of the criminal justice system is now underway under the Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of State Security and Ministry of Justice.