Shan Jixiang calls for legislation to safeguard cultural heritage

Updated: 2015-03-13 11:28


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Shan Jixiang has presented 178 proposals concerning the legislation and enforcement of laws safeguarding traditional cultural heritages in the past decade, and 90 percent of them have been enshrined in the country’s legal system. At the two sessions this year, he brought another 10 suggestions to promote the rule of law in this particular field.

Shan insisted that local governments should balance cultural conservation and economic development. During the process of urbanization, traditional villages or relics are replaced by newly-built high rises. "Driven by commercial interests, some officials approve illegal construction without seeking advice from experts from the cultural protection department. What’s worse, those who ‘dare to’ expose the misconduct are often criticized or oppressed," Shan said in an interview.

Unlike with laws concerning economics and the social security system, the legislation and enforcement of laws on cultural protection still lag behind. "These days, citizens are more aware of the significance of spiritual cultivation, and the growing number of museums built in mainland China is a testament to this." According to statistics, over 2,780 museums are open to the public free of charge nationwide.

In his proposal, Shan also suggested that cultural protection should be added into textbooks of primary schools and institutions of higher education to raise awareness among the public about safeguarding cultural heritage.

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