Constitutional amendment good for China's enduring stability,analysts
Shen Chunyao (2nd L), secretary of the Bill Group of Secretariat of the first session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC) and chairman of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee, and Zheng Shuna (2nd R), deputy secretary of the Bill Group of Secretariat of the first session of the 13th NPC and vice chairperson of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee, take questions at a press conference on an amendment to the country's Constitution in Beijing, capital of China, March 11, 2018. [Photo:Xinhua]
China's recent constitutional amendments are being described as both necessary and urgent for China's development, suggesting the country needs a stronger leadership to further its economic reform and achieve sustainable growth.
A number of Chinese observers are suggesting the new constitutional amendments adopted by China's national legislature, including a revision regarding the President's term of office, are good for China's enduring stability.
Zhang Weiwei, director of the China Institute at Fudan University, says it is significant to stress the Party's leadership in the Constitution.
"If you look at each major decision made like the five-year plan, it takes at least one year and hundreds of rounds of consultation at different levels of [the] Chinese state and Chinese society before decisions are made. And if within this long-term objective, and if these objectives are correct, then what you need is power to have them implemented. So in this critical stage of China's change, amidst the changes around the world, I think the relative more concentration of power in the case of China is necessary. We are going to have so many reforms to be carried out, and the plan is there, we have to do it."
The amendments also enshrine Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era into the Constitution and listed the national supervisory commission as a new state organ.
Support among lawmakers who voted in the new revisions to the Constitution was nearly unanimous.
Liu Shoumin, an NPC deputy and a veteran lawyer, contends the government has followed through on its promise to make no drastic revisions to the constitution, saying the new amendments reflect an advancement of China's governance.
"It follows a good principle of no major changes and only amending those that have to be amended. Through this, it ensures the advancement of the Constitution and keeps its pace with the social life, and maintains its stability, consistency, and authority. So I think the approach to the amendments was sound, proactive and came with great wisdom, reflecting the high-level governing capability of China's leadership and Party in the amendments to the Constitution."
Yu Jie, a professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science says the new amendments represent a desire in China for a strong and consistent agenda.
"China is in that classic cross-roads scenario, whereas you do need further and stronger economic reform and you need a strong agenda to run the country properly. Therefore perhaps you do actually need a stronger pair of hand to give a clear steer to the country."
Meanwhile, China has listed supervisory commissions as a state organ in its Constitution.
The pooling of the supervisory commissions into a collective grouping known as a state organ is said to be designed to help consolidate anti-corruption resources.
Lawmakers also argue it will enhance the Party's centralized, unified leadership in dealing with internal corruption.