Xi promotes judicial reform, IP tribunals

Updated: 2014-06-07 07:55

By Cao Yin (China Daily)

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Judicial professionals said they were glad to see China's leadership is accelerating judicial reform and putting some legal plans into practice.

China's Leading Group for Overall Reform recently held its third meeting, approving two documents on piloting reform of the judicial system, including Shanghai's pilot program, and a plan to set up special tribunals on intellectual property rights.

President Xi Jinping stressed that some basic work, such as the building of the IP special courts and unification of personnel and property in local courts and prosecutors below provincial level, should be pushed forward.

Xi said the classified management of judicial staff, the responsibility system in the judicial field and the occupational protection of legal personnel should be improved at the same time.

"The piloting reform must be guided by the central government and developed under the top-level policies," he said at the meeting, encouraging the pilot judicial departments to do further work.

He added that the central government will support and help the departments to overcome difficulties, aiming to ensure that the reform can be enforced.

Yang Weidong, a law professor at the Chinese Academy of Governance, spoke highly of the meeting, saying it will accelerate the reforms approved by the Third Plenum of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China in November.

"The approval of the documents about piloting reform of the legal system means more special measures will be enacted," Yang said. "The pace of the Shanghai's pilot program, I think, will be much faster and greater, and may involve more judicial explorations.

"Shanghai, as a metropolis with developed judicial ideas in China, should take more responsibility for the reform," he said. "The plan to keep the judicial jurisdiction system 'relatively separate' from the administrative division will be enforced in the city's pilot program, as well as some new and long-term judicial ideas."

Xi Huijia, an associate IP professor at South China University of Technology, echoed Yang, saying that building the IP special courts will be sped up after the related plan was passed Friday.

"The approval for setting up the IP tribunals shows the seriousness with which the central government takes IP work and how much importance it attaches to its protection," Xie added.

An IP judge from Foshan Intermediate People's Court in Guangdong province said they have been hoping to make the dream of the special court a reality, adding that the province has a large IP caseload and great demand for setting up such tribunals.