Anti-graft watchdog to focus on benefits

Source:Xinhua-Global Times Published: 2013-12-12 1:58:01

China's anti-corruption watchdog is planning to draft the standards governing officials' benefits and welfare, defining varying packages based on the level of the official.

The standards, which cover offices, houses, cars, receptions, vacations, secretaries and security guards, aim to ensure that officials are enjoying welfare that "matches" their level, the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said in an article on Wednesday.

The comments made by the commission followed the road map for reform decisions of the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee, which requested better regulation for the officials' benefits to avoid extravagance and corruption.

Only a limited number of personnel at certain levels are allowed special official cars, full-time secretaries and bodyguards, according to a statement on the commission's website.

It said officials' treatment may improve along with China's overall social and economic development, but the enhancement should be limited to within a certain scope.

For retired officials, the standards will also define the welfare they continue to enjoy after their terms in office.

Officials must adhere to the standards and are never allowed to arrange over-standard cars, homes or extra staff, the anti-corruption organ warned.

They are also prohibited from misusing military vehicle and police car plates, or using public cars for personal convenience.

China's authorities have carried out the anti-extravagance campaign for a while. A regulation, issued by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council in November outlined the proper management of funds for various uses, including official travel and receptions, in an effort to rein in power.

The commission also explained the officials' residence system, saying under the system the government will arrange a house for a senior official and their family members. The government will take the house back and allocate it to another official if the original occupant leaves office.

Controversy arose after such a system was mentioned in the CPC's reform decision, as the public questioned whether it became an extra bonus for officials. The CPC said that such a system is in an attempt to stop officials from acquiring properties through bribes and the watchdog noted Wednesday that the system is common international practice.

The commission vowed to reinforce supervision and inspection of officials while punishing those who violate the standards.

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