Demotion system introduced to motivate CPC cadres

Updated: 2015-07-30 14:07


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BEIJING - The latest regulation on promotion and demotion of Party cadres is an important measure to more strictly govern officials.

The Communist Party of China (CPC) issued a regulation on the promotion and demotion of officials on Monday. The regulation said the CPC will strengthen its management of officials, adding that a high-quality ranking system must be established to create a clean political environment.

The regulation aims to fix a longtime problem in China's political system that allows officials to be promoted or stay at the same level, but does not let them be demoted unless they commit violations of CPC rules or the law.


The key to governing the Party with stricter discipline is management of cadres. Since the 18th National Congress of the CPC in 2012, the Party's central authority has made a series of rules about selection and appointment of cadres, training, reports of personal issues, accountability, and "naked officials" whose family members have moved abroad.

"In China's official personnel system, there's a lingering problem in which convention seems to allow officials to be promoted or stay at the same level, and they can only be demoted if they make mistakes," said Yao Wenzhi, vice minister of the Organization Department of east China's Zhejiang Province. Yao added that the CPC, since its rule began in 1949, has been fully aware of the problem and has been trying to fix it.

In 1978, the Party abolished de facto lifelong tenure for leading posts and established and improved retirement, tenure and accountability systems. However, it still lacks a system for demoting officials.

The new rule is the first the CPC has made for demotion, according to experts.

The regulation stipulates concrete rules for the demotion of officials based on lessons taken from CPC cadre team-building, especially in recent years, said Dai Yanjun, professor with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee.

Dai said the regulation is a breakthrough in reforming the cadre and personnel system in China and showcases the CPC's determination to strictly govern the party.

"We can expect that the implementation of the regulation will strengthen the CPC's management of officials and help build a clean political environment and a team of competent cadres," said Yao.


Dai said the central authority should design the demotion system in a scientific way in accordance with the law and let officials know the reason for their demotions.

The regulation lists six scenarios in which officials should be demoted, such as reaching retirement age, expiration of the term of office, accountability for problems, health reasons, legal and disciplinary offenses, and reassigning officials who are not suited for their current posts.

The regulation also details 10 scenarios in which an official may be ill-suited for a post, and the related procedures.

Yao said the regulation provides a great opportunity to set regular checks on incompetent officials with poor work conduct such as political idleness, malpractice, and neglect of duty.

Yao added that officials will only respect the regulation if the rules are implemented strictly and in an open, fair and just manner.

Experts said it will take time for officials to accept the demotion system.


Experts said the goal of the regulation is not demotion of officials, but rather to motivate officials to act more effectively in their posts.

Some officials have kept their positions for a long time despite incompetence and laziness because they had no legal or disciplinary offenses.

According to Li Tuo, professor with the Chinese Academy of Governance, the absence of a demotion system has led some officials who lack initiative to keep their posts, and this should be seen as "invisible corruption."

Experts said the new regulation demonstrates the CPC's goal of motivating officials to contribute to the nation's development by assigning capable officials to positions.

"Officials should have crisis awareness and be fully prepared for demotion if they achieve nothing in their posts," Yao said. "The new regulation ensures 'fresh water' flows into the cadre team and 'polluted water' is pumped out."

Experts said the CPC should also strengthen education, management, supervision and protection of cadres to maximize the benefits of the regulation.

"By promoting capable officials, warning slack ones and punishing incompetent ones, the CPC will bring each and every official together to better serve the country's reform and development," said Yao.