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China cuts, decentralizes more government approvals

BEIJING – The State Council has revised 21 administrative regulations to cancel or decentralize administrative approvals.

The decision, endorsed by Premier Li Keqiang, is effective immediately, said a statement from the State Council, China’s cabinet, on Friday.

Through the amendment to 13 regulations related to sectors including civil aviation, mining, shipping, telecoms, financial services, 23 administrative approvals have been removed, according to the statement.

The revision of the other eight regulations allows the central government to delegate seven administrative approvals to governments at lower levels. They are related to the management of higher education, new plant species, land use, safe production certificates, explosives for civilian purposes, narcotics, precursor chemicals and radioactive devices.

The central government also forced government regulators to bear more supervisory duties through amending 10 articles among these regulations.

This is the latest move since the State Council began a new round of restructuring and transforming government functions in March, 2013.

Through canceling and decentralizing administrative approvals, the central government expects to give local governments more leverage and flexibility and shift the focus of government work to supervision.

These reforms are aimed at further unleashing market dynamics, and the initiative and creativity of society, the statement said.

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