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Legislation Law (2015 Revised Edition)

Current Version: https://www.chinalawtranslate.com/en/legislation-law-2023/

(Adopted by the 3rd Session of the Ninth National People's Congress on March 15, 2000; Amended by the 3rd Session of the Twelfth National People's Congress's "National People's Congress Decision on Amending the 'Legislation Law of the People's Republic of China'"

billTable of Contents

Chapter I: General Provisions

Chapter II: [National] Law

Section 1: Legislative Authority

Section 2: Legislative Procedure of the National People’s Congress

Section 3: Legislative Procedure of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress

Section 4: Legislative Interpretation

Section 5: Other Provisions

Chapter III: Administrative Regulations

Chapter IV: Local Regulations, Autonomous Regulations, and Separate Regulations and Rules

Section 1: Local Regulations; Autonomous Regulations and Separate Regulations

Section 2: [Local and Administrative] Rules

CHAPTER V: APPLICATION; RECORDING AND REVIEW

Chapter VI: Supplementary Provisions

Legislation Law of the People's Republic of China

Chapter I: General Provisions

Article 1: This Law is formulated on the basis of the Constitution to standardize legislative activities, perfect the nation’s legislative system, increase the quality of legislation, improve the socialist legal system with Chinese characteristics, give play to the leading and driving roles of legislation, safeguard and develop socialist democracy, comprehensively advance governing the country according to law, and build a socialist country under the rule of law.

Article 2: This Law applies to the formulation, revision, and repeal of laws, administrative regulations, local regulations, as well as autonomous regulations and separate regulations.

The formulation, revision, and repeal of State Council departmental rules and local government rules are to be carried out in accordance with the relevant provisions of this Law.

Article 3: Legislation shall adhere to the basic principles of the Constitution, and shall be centered around economic development, and shall adhere to the socialist road, adhere to the democratic dictatorship by the people, adhere to the leadership by the Chinese Communist Party, and adhere to the theory of Marxism, Leninism and Mao Zedong thoughts and Deng Xiaoping theory, and adhere to the reform and opening to the outside world.

Article 4: Legislation shall be in accordance with the legally-prescribed scope of authority and procedures, have the overall national interest as its starting place, and preserve the uniformity and dignity of the socialist legal system.

Article 5: Lawmaking shall reflect the will of the people, promote socialist democracy, persist in legislative openness, and ensure that the people participate in legislative activities through various channels.

Article 6: Legislation shall be based on reality, suit the needs of economic and social development and of comprehensively deepening reforms, and scientifically and reasonably prescribe the rights and obligations of citizens, legal persons, and other organizations, and the powers and duties of state organs.

Legal norms shall be clear, specific, targeted, and enforceable.

Chapter II: [National] Law

Section 1: Legislative Authority

Article 7: The National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee exercise the national legislative power.

The National People’s Congress is to formulate and revise criminal, civil, and state organic laws and other basic laws.

The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress is to formulate and revise laws other than those to be formulated by the National People’s Congress; and while the National People’s Congress is not in session, partially revises and supplements laws formulated by the National People’s Congress, but must not contravene the basic principles of those laws.

Article 8: Only (national) law may be formulated on the following matters:

(1) state sovereignty;

(2) the establishment, organization and authority of various people’s congresses, people’s governments, people’s courts and people’s procuratorates;

(3) the system of ethnic region autonomy, the system of special administrative regions, and the system of autonomy of the public at the basic level;

(4) crimes and criminal punishment;

(5) compulsory measures and punishments that deprive citizens' political rights or restrict their physical liberty;

(6) basic systems for taxation such as the establishment of taxes, determination of tax rates, and the collection and management of taxes;

(7) expropriation and requisition of non-state owned assets;

(8) basic civil systems;

(9) basic economic systems, and basic fiscal, customs, financial, and foreign trade systems;

(10) systems for litigation and arbitration;

(11) other matters on which laws must be formulated by the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee.

Article 9: Where no law has been formulated on a matter provided for in Article 8 of this Law, the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee have the power to make a decision authorizing the State Council to first formulate administrative regulations on some of the matters concerned, as necessary; except where the matter relates to crime and criminal punishment, compulsory measures and punishments depriving citizens' of their political rights or restricting their personal freedom, the judicial system, or other such matters.

Article 10: An authorizing decision shall specify matters such as the purpose, subject matter, scope, and duration of the authorization, and the principles that the authorized organ shall follow in implementing the authorizing decision.

The duration of an authorization must not exceed five years, except as otherwise provided by the authorizing decision.

Six months before the duration of the authorization is completed, the authorized organ shall report to the authorizing organs on the status of carrying out the authorizing decision, and submit an opinion on whether or not it is necessary to formulate relevant law; where it is necessary to continue the authorization, an opinion may be submitted to that effect, and the National People's Congress and its Standing Committee will make a decision.

Article 11: When, as tested by practice, the conditions are ripe for formulating a law on the subject matter of a legislative authorization, the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee is to promptly formulate a law. After the law is formulated , the authorization for that legislative matter is concluded.

Article 12: Authorized organs shall strictly follow the authorization decisions in exercising the authorized powers.

Authorized organs must not transfer authorized powers to other organs.

Article 13: The National People's Congress and its Standing Committee may, as needed for reform and development, decide to authorize the temporary adjustment or suspension of the application of some statutory provisions on specific matters in fields such as administrative management, for a set period of time in some areas.

Section 2: Legislative Procedure of the National People’s Congress

Article 14: The Presidium of the National People’s Congress may introduce bills to the National People’s Congress for deliberation by a session of the National People’s Congress.

The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, State Council, Central Military Committee, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, and each special committee of the National People’s Congress may introduce bills to the National People’s Congress, which are be put on the session agenda by a decision of the Presidium.

Article 15: A delegation, or at least 30 delegates acting jointly, may submit legislative bills to the National People’s Congress; the Presidium is to decide whether to place them on the agenda of a session, or may first refer them to the relevant special committees for deliberation and the submission of opinions on whether to place them on the agenda of a session, and then decide whether to place them on the agenda of a session.

When conducting deliberations, the special committees may invite bill sponsors to attend the meetings and express opinions.

Article 16: When the National People’s Congress is not in session, a legislative bill submitted to it may first be submitted to the Standing Committee, which, after having deliberated the bill in accordance with the relevant procedures set forth in Section 3 of Chapter II of this Law, is to decide to submit it to the National People’s Congress for deliberation, and the Standing Committee or the bill sponsor is to make an explanation to a plenary meeting of the Congress.

In deliberating legislative bills in accordance with the provisions of the previous paragraph, the Standing Committee shall solicit opinions from the delegates to the National People’s Congress in various ways, and give feedback on the relevant situations; in conducting legislative investigations and research, the special committees and working bodies of the Standing Committee may invite the relevant delegates to the National People’s Congress to participate.

Article 17: For bills that the Standing Committee has decided to submit to a session of the National People’s Congress for deliberation, the draft laws shall be distributed to the delegates one month prior to the commencement of the session.

Article 18: For a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a session of the National People’s Congress, the delegations are to conduct deliberations after the Congress hears an explanation by the sponsor at a plenary meeting.

When the delegations deliberate a legislative bill, the sponsor shall send personnel to listen to opinions and answer questions.

When the delegations deliberate a legislative bill, the relevant organs and organizations shall send personnel to provide briefings based on the delegations’ requests.

Article 19: Legislative bills that have been placed on the agenda of a session of the National People’s Congress are to be deliberated by the relevant special committees, which are to submit deliberation opinions to the Presidium, and [such opinions] are to be printed and distributed to the session.

Article 20: For bills that are on the agenda of a session of National People’s Congress, the Law Committee is to conduct uniform deliberation on the basis of the delegations and relevant special committees' deliberation opinions as delivered by the delegations and the relevant special committees, and is to submit a report on the outcomes of the deliberation and the revised draft laws to the Presidium, and the report shall explain the major dissenting views; after the Presidium has deliberated and passed the report and draft revisions, they are to be printed and circulated at the session.

Article 21: For a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a session of the National People’s Congress, when necessary, the Executive Chairpersons of the Presidium may convene a meeting of the heads of the delegations to hear the deliberation opinions of the delegations on major issues in the legislative bill, conduct discussions, and report to the Presidium on the discussions and the opinions expressed.

The Executive Chairpersons of the Presidium may also convene the relevant delegates selected by the delegations to discuss the major specialized issues in the legislative bills, and report to the Presidium on the discussions and the opinions expressed.

Article 22: Where the sponsor requests to withdraw a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a session of the National People’s Congress before it is put to a vote, it shall explain the reasons, and deliberation of the legislative bill is to end once the Presidium gives consent and reports to the Congress.

Article 23: Where there are major issues that require further study in the deliberation of a legislative bill, as proposed by the Presidium and decided by a plenary meeting of the Congress, the Standing Committee may be authorized to conduct further deliberations based on the delegates’ opinions, make a decision, and report to the next session of the National People’s Congress on the decision; the Standing Committee may also be authorized to conduct further deliberations based on the delegates’ opinions, put forward a revision plan, and submit it to the next session of the National People’s Congress for deliberation and decision.

Article 24: Upon deliberation by each delegation, the draft revisions to the law are to be further revised by the Law Committee based on the deliberation opinions of the delegations, and the Law Committee shall put forward a voting draft of the law that the Presidium is to submit it to the plenary session for voting, which can be passed by a majority of all delegates.

Article 25: Laws adopted by the National People’s Congress are to be promulgated by presidential orders signed by the President of the People’s Republic of China.

Section 3: Legislative Procedure of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress

Article 26: The Council of Chairmen may introduce bills to the Standing Committee, and Standing Committee sessions will deliberate them.

The State Council, Central Military Committee, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, and each special committee of the National People's Congress may introduce bills to the Standing Committee, and the Council of Chairmen will make a decision on putting the bills on the agenda of a session of the Standing Committee, or may first refer them to the relevant special committees to deliberate and issue reports, and then make a decision to put it on the agenda of a Standing Committee session. If the Council of Chairpersons finds that a bill has major issues that require further study, it may recommend that the sponsor revise and improve the bill before submitting it to the Standing Committee.

Article 27: Ten or more constituent members of the Standing Committee may jointly submit legislative bills to the Standing Committee; the Council of Chairpersons is to decide whether to place them on the agenda of a Standing Committee session, or may first refer them to the relevant special committees for deliberation and the submission of opinions on whether to place them on a session’s agenda, and then decide whether to place them on the agenda of a Standing Committee session. Where [a bill] is not placed on the agenda of a Standing Committee session, a report shall be made to a Standing Committee session or an explanation given to the sponsor.

When conducting deliberations, the special committees may invite bill sponsors to attend the meetings and express opinions.

Article 28: For a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a Standing Committee session, except in special circumstances, the draft law shall be distributed to the constituent members of the Standing Committee seven days before the session convenes.

When a Standing Committee session deliberates legislative bills, the relevant delegates to the National People’s Congress shall be invited to attend the session as non-voting attendees.

Article 29: Bills that have been put on the agenda of Standing Committee sessions, shall generally be deliberated three times by Standing Committee sessions before being submitted for a vote.

During the initial deliberation of the bill at a Standing Committee session, an explanation by the sponsor is to be heard at a plenary meeting, and group meetings are to conduct preliminary deliberations.

During the second deliberation of bills by Standing Committee sessions, comments of the Law Committee on the status of revisions and major issues regarding the draft law are to be heard at a plenary meeting, and further deliberations are to be conducted by subgroup meetings.

During the third deliberation of bills by Standing Committee sessions, the Law Committee's deliberation outcome report on the draft law is be heard at a plenary meeting, and subgroup meetings are to further deliberate the revisions to the draft law.

When deliberating bills, the Standing Committee may convene joint group meetings or plenary meetings, as necessary, to discuss the major issues in the draft law.

Article 30: For bills that are on the agenda of Standing Committee sessions, where a consensus is largely formed, it may be submitted for a vote after two deliberations by Standing Committee sessions; where there is a single matter for adjustment, or for bills which partially revise a law, and a preponderant consensus is formed, it may also be brought to a vote after a single deliberation by a session of the Standing Committee.

Article 31: When the Standing Committee deliberates a legislative bill at group meetings, the sponsor shall send personnel to listen to opinions and answer inquiries.

When the Standing Committee deliberates a legislative bill at group meetings, the relevant organs or organizations shall send personnel to provide briefings as requested by a group.

Article 32: Legislative bills that have been placed on the agenda of a Standing Committee session are to be deliberated by the relevant special committees, which are to submit deliberation opinions to be printed and distributed to the Standing Committee session.

When deliberating legislative bills, the relevant special committees may invite members of other special committees to attend the meetings as non-voting attendees and express opinions.

Article 33: For bills that have been put on the agendas of Standing Committee sessions, the Law Committee is to conduct uniform deliberation based on the deliberation opinions of the constituent members of the Standing Committee and relevant special committees, and the opinions of various sides; and is to submit a report on the status of revisions or a deliberation conclusion report and the revised draft law; with major dissenting views explained in the report or deliberation conclusion report. Where the deliberation opinions of the relevant special committees are not adopted, feedback shall be provided to the relevant special committees.

When deliberating bills, the Law Committee shall invite members of the relevant special committees to attend the meeting and express opinions.

Article 34: When deliberating legislative bills, the special committees shall convene plenary meetings to conduct deliberations, and as necessary, may request the relevant organs or organizations to send the relevant responsible persons to provide briefings.

Article 35: When there is disagreement among the special committees on an important issue in a draft law, they shall report to the Council of Chairpersons.

Article 36: For bills which are on the agendas of Standing Committee sessions, the Law Committee, the relevant special committees, and the working bodies of the Standing Committees shall hear the opinions of all sides. Opinions may be heard using various methods, such as symposia, debate sessions, and hearings.

Where issues related to legislative bills are of a more specialized nature, and it is necessary to conduct an appraisal of their feasibility, a debate session shall be convened to hear opinions from sources such as relevant experts, departments, and delegates of the National People's Congress. Reports on the debate shall be made to the Standing Committee.

Where there are major divergent opinions on issues related to legislative bills, or such issues involve major adjustments of interest relationships, and it is necessary to conduct a hearing, hearings shall be held to hear the opinions of relevant basic-level and group representatives, departments, mass organizations, experts, delegates of the National People’s Congress, and relevant aspects of the society. Reports on the hearings shall be made to the Standing Committee.

The working bodies of the Standing Committee shall distribute draft laws to the delegates to the National People’s Congress in the relevant fields, the standing committees of local people’s congresses, as well as relevant departments, organizations, and experts, to solicit their opinions.

Article 37: For a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a Standing Committee session, the draft law and an explanation of its drafting or revision, etc. shall be released to the public for comment after the Standing Committee session, except where the Council of Chairpersons decides not to release them. The period for releasing [a draft] to the public for comment is usually not to be less than thirty days. A report on the solicitation of comments shall be made to the public.

Article 38: For bills that are on the agenda of a Standing Committee session, the working bodies of the Standing Committee shall collect and compile the comments made by the subgroups during deliberation, an comments submitted by all sides, as well as other relevant materials and send them to the Law Committee and relevant special committees, and a necessary, distribute them at Standing Committee sessions.

Article 39: For bills that are intended to be submitted to Standing Committee sessions for deliberation, before the Law Committee submits it's deliberation outcome report, working bodies of the Standing Committee may conduct appraisals of issues such as the feasibility of major systems in draft laws, the timing of the new laws, the social impact of implementing the laws, and problems that might emerge. The Law Committee is to explain the outcome of the evaluations in the report on the results of deliberations.

Article 40: Where the sponsor requests to withdraw a legislative bill that has been placed on the agenda of a session of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress before it is put to a vote, it shall explain the reasons, and deliberation of the legislative bill is to end once the Presidium gives consent and reports to the Congress.

Article 41: Upon deliberation of revised draft laws by the Standing Committee session, the Law Committee is to make further revisions based on the comments made during deliberation by constituent members of the Standing Committee, and put forward voting drafts of the laws; and the Council of Chairmen is to request that a plenary session of the Standing Committee make a vote, and the Standing Committee may pass them by a majority vote of all its constituent members.

Before the voting version of a draft law is presented to a Standing Committee session for a vote, the Council of Chairpersons may decide, based on the deliberations of Standing Committee sessions, to submit individual important provisions on which opinions greatly differ to a Standing Committee session for separate votes.

After a Standing Committee session votes on clauses submitted for a separate vote, the Council of Chairmen may, based on the separate vote, decide to submit the voting drafts of the laws for a vote, or may also decide to temporarily not submit them for a vote, and send them to the Law Committee and relevant special committees for further review.

Article 42: For bills deliberated by a Standing Committee session, where deliberation on the bill has been postponed for two years due to larger differences among different sides on major issues such as the necessity or feasibility of formulating such bills; or where bills were temporarily not introduced for voting and have not been put on the agenda of a Standing Committee session for two years, the Council of Chairmen is to make a report to the Standing Committee, and deliberation of the bill is to be concluded.

Article 43: Where legislative bills are submitted together to revise individual provisions in multiple laws that involve similar matters, they may be voted on together or may also be voted on separately, as decided by the Council of Chairpersons.

Article 44: Laws adopted by the Standing Committee are to be promulgated by presidential orders signed by the President of the People’s Republic of China.

Section 4: Legislative Interpretation

Article 45: The power to interpret laws belongs to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

Where a law has any of the following circumstances, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is to make an interpretation:

(1) it is necessary to further clarify the specific meaning of a provision in the law;

(2) it is necessary to clarify the applicable legal basis in new circumstances that arise after the law’s formulation.

Article 46: The State Council, Central Military Commission, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, and each special committee of the National People's Congress; as well as the Standing Committee of the People’s Congresses of each province, autonomous region, and directly governed municipality, may make requests for legislative interpretation to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

Article 47: The working bodies of the Standing Committee are to research and prepare draft legislative interpretations, and the Council of Chairmen is to make a decision as to putting them on the agendas of Standing Committee sessions.

Article 48: Upon deliberation by a Standing Committee session, draft legislative interpretations are to be deliberated and revised by the Law Committee, based on comments made by constituent members of the Standing Committee, and it shall submit a voting draft of the legislative interpretation.

Article 49: The voting version of a draft legislative interpretation is to be adopted by a simple majority of all constituent members of the Standing Committee and promulgated by a public announcement of the Standing Committee.

Article 50: Legislative interpretations issued by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress have the same force as laws.

Section 5: Other Provisions

Article 51: The National People's Congress and its Standing Committee are to strengthen the organization and coordination of legislative work, and play a leading role in legislative work.

Article 52: Through adopting legislative plans, an annual legislation program, and other such means, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress strengthens the overall arrangement of legislative work. Preparation of legislative plans and the annual legislation program shall earnestly study delegate's proposals and suggestions, broadly solicit opinions, scientifically debate and evaluate, and determine legislative projects on the basis of the needs of economic and social development and the establishment of democratic rule, and increase the timeliness, focus, and systematization of legislation. Legislative plans and the annual legislation programs are adopted and released to the public by the Council of Chairmen.

The working bodies of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress are responsible for preparing legislative plans and formulating the annual legislation programs, and are to urge the implementation of the legislative plans and annual legislation programs in accordance with the requirements of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress.

Article 53: The relevant special committees of the National People’s Congress and the working bodies of the Standing Committee shall participate in the relevant parties’ preparations of draft laws in advance; the relevant special committees or the working bodies of the Standing Committee may organize the drafting of important draft laws that are comprehensive, of overall importance, or fundamental.

For draft laws that are relatively specialized, experts from the relevant fields may be invited to participate in drafting efforts, or the relevant experts, teaching or scientific research institutions, or social organizations may be entrusted with the drafting.

Article 54: In submitting a legislative bill, [the sponsor] shall submit a text of the draft law and an accompanying explanation at the same time, and provide necessary reference materials. Where a law is to be revised, a comparison of the texts before and after the revision shall also be provided. The explanation of draft laws shall include the need for its formulation or revision, it's feasibility, and main content, as well as circumstances of coordinating and handling major differences of opinion during the drafting process.

Article 55: Before a legislative bill submitted to the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee is placed on the agenda of a session, the sponsor has the right to withdraw it.

Article 56: For bills that were submitted to plenary meetings of the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee for a vote and failed to pass, if the sponsors find it necessary to formulate such laws, they may re-submit them in accordance with the procedures prescribed by law, and the Presidium or the Council of Chairpersons is to decide whether to put them on a session’s agenda; among them, legislative bills that failed to be adopted by the National People’s Congress shall be submitted to the National People’s Congress for deliberation and decision.

Article 57: Laws shall specify the date for their implementation.

Article 58: A presidential order signed to promulgate a law is to set forth the law’s formulating organ, date of adoption, and effective date.

After laws are promulgated, they should be promptly published in the Gazette of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress and on the National People's Congress website, as well as in nationally-circulated newspapers.

The text of laws as published in the Gazette of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress is the standard text.

Article 59: The relevant provisions of this Chapter apply to the procedures for revising and repealing laws.

Where a law is revised, a new text of the law shall be promulgated.

The repeal of a law is to be promulgated by a presidential order signed by the President of the People’s Republic of China, except where the law is repealed by the provisions of another law.

Article 60: Where a draft law is inconsistent with relevant provisions in other laws, the bill sponsor shall provide an explanation and put forward proposals for handling [the inconsistencies]; and, when necessary, shall concurrently submit bills to revise or repeal the relevant provisions in other laws.

When the Law Committee and relevant special committees deliberate a bill and find that it is necessary to revise or repeal other relevant legal provisions, they shall submit a handling proposals.

Article 61: Where required by its content, a laws maybe divided into Titles, Chapters, Sections, Articles, Paragraphs, Items, and Sub-items.

Titles, Chapters, Sections, and Articles are to be numbered with Chinese characters in numerical order, and Paragraphs are not to be numbered; the numbers for items are to be expressed as Chinese numbers in parentheses in numerical order, and the numbering for sub-items is to be in Arabic numbers in numerical order.

The caption of a law’s title shall clearly state its formulating organ and date of adoption. For a law that has been revised, [the caption] shall clearly state each revising organ and date of revision in order.

Article 62: Where a provision in a law clearly requires the relevant state organs to make specific accompanying provisions on special matters, the relevant state organs shall make such provisions within one year after the law takes effect, but where the law prescribes a different time period for formulating specific accompanying provisions, follow those provisions. Where the relevant state organs fail to make specific accompanying provisions within the time period, they shall explain the circumstances to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

Article 63: The relevant special committees of the National People’s Congress and working bodies of the Standing Committee may organize post-legislative evaluations of relevant laws or relevant provisions in laws. Reports on the evaluations shall be made to the Standing Committee. Reports on the evaluations shall be made to the Standing Committee.

Article 64: The working bodies of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress may study and respond to legal inquiries regarding specific issues and file [such responses] with the Standing Committee for recording.

Chapter III: Administrative Regulations

Article 65: The State Council formulates administrative regulations in accordance with the Constitution and laws.

Administrative regulations may make provisions on the following matters:

(1) matters for which the formulation of administrative regulations is required in order to implement laws;

(2) matters over which the State Council has administrative management authority under Article 89 of the Constitution.

Where the State Council has first formulated administrative regulations on matters on which the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee shall formulate laws, in accordance with authorizing decisions of the National People’s Congress or its Standing Committee, and as tested by practice, the conditions for formulating laws have become ripe, the State Council shall promptly request the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee to formulate laws.

Article 66: The State Council’s legislative affairs body shall draft the State Council’s annual legislative plans based on the State’s overall work arrangements and report them to the State Council for review and approval. The legal projects in the State Council's annual legislation program shall be linked to the legislative plan and annual legislation program of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress. The State Council’s legislative affairs body shall promptly track and inquire about the implementation of the legislative plans by the various State Council departments, and strengthen organization, coordination, supervision, and guidance.

Where the relevant State Council departments find it necessary to formulate administrative regulations, they shall report to the State Council and request project initiation.

Article 67: The relevant State Council departments or the State Council’s legislative affairs body is specifically responsible for drafting administrative regulations; the State Council’s legislative affairs body is to organize the drafting of important laws and administrative regulations on administrative management. During the process of drafting administrative regulations, opinions should be extensively solicited from relevant organs, organizations, People's Congresses, and members of the public. Opinions may be heard using various methods, such as symposia, debate sessions, and hearings.

Draft administrative regulations shall be released to the public for solicitation of comments, except where the State Council decides not to release them.

Article 68: Upon completion of the drafting work on administrative regulations, the drafting units shall send the drafts, their explanations, the various parties’ different opinions on major issues in the drafts, and other relevant materials to the State Council’s legislative affairs body for review.

The State Council’s legislative affairs body shall submit a review report and a revised version of the draft to the State Council; the review report shall explain the major issues with the draft.

Article 69: The procedures for deciding on administrative regulations are to be handled in accordance with the relevant provisions of the State Council Organic Law of the People’s Republic of China.

Article 70: Administrative regulations are to be promulgated by the a State Council order signed by the Premier.

Administrative regulations concerning national defense construction may be promulgated by orders of the State Council and the Central Military Commission jointly signed by the Premier of the State Council and Chairperson of the Central Military Commission.

Article 71: After administrative regulations are signed and promulgated, they are to be promptly published in the Gazette of the State Council, on the Chinese Government Legal Information Net, and in nationally circulated newspapers.

The text of administrative regulations published in the Gazette of the State Council is the standard text.

Chapter IV: Local Regulations, Autonomous Regulations, and Separate Regulations and Rules

Section 1: Local Regulations; Autonomous Regulations and Separate Regulations

Article 72: Based on the specific situations and actual needs of the administrative region, provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality people's congresses and their Standing Committees may formulate local provisions so long as they do not contravene any provision of the Constitution, laws, and administrative regulations.

Based on the specific circumstances and actual requirements of cities, the people's congresses of districted-cities and their standing committees may formulate local provisions in areas such as urban and rural construction and administration, environmental protection, and historic and cultural protection, so long as the local provisions do not contravene the Constitution, laws, administrative regulations, or the local provisions and regulations of that province or autonomous region; but where laws have other provisions on the matters that on which districted-cities formulate administrative regulations, follow those provisions. The local regulations of a districted city must be reported to and approved by the standing committee of the people’s congress of the [relevant] province or autonomous region before they may take effect. The standing committees of the people's congresses of provinces or autonomous regions shall conduct a review of the legality of local regulations submitted for approval, and shall approve them within four months if such they do not contravene the Constitution, laws, administrative regulations or the local regulations of that province or autonomous region.

When the standing committee of the people’s congress of a province or an autonomous region, in reviewing the local regulations of districted cities submitted for approval, discovers that they contravene the rules of the people’s government of that province or autonomous region, it shall make a decision on how to handle [the contravention].

Except for the cities where the people’s governments of provinces and autonomous regions are located, the cities where special economic zones are located, and the relatively large cities as already approved by the State Council, the specific steps and timing for other districted cities to start formulating local regulations are to be determined by the standing committee of the people’s congress of the [relevant] province or autonomous region, based on a comprehensive consideration of such factors as the population size, geographical area, economic and social development, legislative needs, and legislative capacity of the districted cities within the jurisdiction of that province or autonomous region, and are to be filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and the State Council for recording.

Autonomous prefecture's people's congresses and their standing committees may exercise the authority of districted-cities for formulating local regulations as provided by Paragraph 2 of this article. The specific steps and timing for autonomous prefectures to start formulating local regulations are to be determined in accordance with the provisions of the previous paragraph.

Local regulations already formulated by the cities where people's governments of provinces or autonomous regions are located, where special economic zones are located, or the bigger cities approved by the State Council, that involve matters outside the scope provided for in Paragraph 2 of this article, shall remain in force.

Article 73: Local regulations may be made on the following matters:

(1) matters on which specific provisions must be made to implement the provisions of laws and administrative regulation based on the actual circumstances of the [relevant] administrative region;

(2) matters of local affairs on which local regulations must be formulated.

Except for those matters provided for in article 8 of this law, where the government has not formulated laws or administrative regulations on other matters, provinces, autonomous regions, directly governed municipalities, districted-cities and autonomous prefectures may first formulate local regulations based on specific local conditions and actual need. After laws or administrative regulations formulated by the State take effect, the formulating organs shall promptly revise or repeal [those local regulations].

Local regulations formulated by districted-cities or autonomous prefectures on the basis of paragraphs 1 or 2 of this article are limited to the matters provided for in article 72 paragraph 2 of this law.

In formulating local regulations, duplicative provisions are generally not to be made on matters for which superior legislation already has clear provisions.

Article 74: The people's congresses and their standing committees of provinces or cities containing special economic zones are to formulate regulations on the basis of authorization decisions from the National People's Congresses, to be implemented within the special economic zone

Article 75: The people's congresses of ethnic autonomous areas have the power to formulate autonomous regulations and special regulations on the basis of the political, economic and cultural characteristics of the local ethnicities. The autonomous regulations and separate regulations of autonomous regions are to take effect after being submitted to and approved by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress. The autonomous regulations and separate regulations of autonomous prefectures or autonomous counties are to take effect after being submitted to and approved by the standing committees of the people’s congresses of the [relevant] provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities.

Autonomous regulations and separate regulations may adjust the provisions of laws and administrative regulations based on the characteristics of local ethnicities, but must not contravene the basic principles of laws or administrative regulations, and must not adjust the provisions of the Constitution or the Regional Ethnic Autonomy Law, or the provisions in other relevant laws and administrative regulations that are specifically made for ethnic autonomous areas.

Article 76: Local regulations on especially major matters in an administrative region are to be passed by the people's congress.

Article 77: The procedures for submission, deliberation and voting on bills of local regulations, autonomous regulations or special regulations, are to be provided for by the people's congresses at the corresponding levels in accordance with the "Organic Law of the People's Republic of China on Local People's Congresses and Local People's Governments", and with reference to the provisions of Sections 2, 3 and 5 of Chapter II of this Law.

The bodies responsible for unified deliberations of draft local regulations are to submit reports on the results of deliberations and revised versions of the drafts.

Article 78: Local regulations formulated by the people's congress of a province, autonomous region or directly governed municipality are to be published and announced by the congress Presidium.

Local regulations formulated by the standing committee of the people’s congress of a province, an autonomous region, or a directly governed municipality are to be promulgated by a public announcement of the standing committee.

After being approved, local regulations formulated by the people’s congress of a districted city or an autonomous prefecture and its standing committee are to be promulgated by a public announcement of the standing committee of the people’s congress of the districted city or autonomous prefecture.

After being approved, autonomous regulations and separate regulations are to be separately promulgated by a public announcement of the standing committee of the people’s congress of the [relevant] autonomous region, autonomous prefecture, or autonomous county.

Article 79: After a local provision, autonomous regulation or special regulation of an autonomous region is promulgated, it shall be published in a timely fashion in the bulletin of the standing committee of the people's congress at the same level, on the website of the National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China and the website of local people's congress as well as in the newspapers issued within the administrative region.

The text of local regulations, autonomous regulations, and separate regulations as published in the gazettes of standing committees is the standard text.

Section 2: [Local and Administrative] Rules

Article 80: The departments and commissions under the State Council, the People's Bank of China, the National Audit Office, and directly controlled institutions with administrative regulatory functions may formulate rules within the scope of that agency's authority on the basis of laws, state council administrative regulations, decisions, or orders.

The matters provided for by departmental rules shall be matters concerning the implementation of laws or the State Council’s administrative regulations, decisions, or orders. Departmental rules must not prescribe norms that impair the rights of citizens, legal persons, or other organizations or increase their obligations without a basis in laws or administrative regulations, decisions, or orders of the State Council, and must not increase the issuing department’s powers or reduce its legally prescribed duties.

Article 81: For matters that are within the scope of authority of two or more State Council departments, the State Council shall be requested to formulate administrative regulations or have the relevant departments of the State Council jointly formulate rules.

Article 82: The people's governments of provinces, autonomous regions, directly-governed municipalities, districted-cities, or autonomous prefectures may formulate rules on the basis of laws and administrative regulations as well as local regulations of their respective provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities.

Local government rules may make provisions on the following matters:

(1) matters on which rules must be formulated to implement the provisions of laws, administrative regulations, or local regulations;

(2) specific matters of administrative management within the relevant administrative region.

The formulation of local government rules by the people's governments of districted-cities and autonomous prefectures in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article is limited to matters relating to areas such as urban and rural construction and administration, environmental protection, and historical and cultural protection. Local government rules that have already been formulated and involve matters outside the scope of the aforementioned matters are to remain in force.

Except for the cities where the people’s governments of provinces and autonomous regions are located, the cities where special economic zones are located, and the relatively large cities as already approved by the State Council, the time for the people’s government of any other districted city or autonomous prefecture to start formulating rules is the same as the time for the city or autonomous prefecture to start formulating local regulations as determined by the standing committee of the relevant province or autonomous region.

Where local regulations shall be formulated but the conditions are not yet ripe, local government rules may be formulated first to satisfy the urgent needs of administrative management. Where it is necessary to continue implementing the administrative measures provided for by such rules after they have been in effect for two years, the people’s congress at the same level or its standing committee shall be requested to formulate local regulations.

Local government rules must not prescribe norms that impair the rights of citizens, legal persons, and other organizations or increase their obligations without a basis in laws, administrative regulations, or local regulations.

Article 83: The State Council is to provide the procedures for formulation of State Council department rules and local government rules, with reference to Chapter III of this law.

Article 84: Department Rules shall be decided on by ministerial meetings or commission meetings.

Local government rules shall be decided on by government executive meetings or plenary meetings.

Article 85: Department rules are to be signed by the department heads for publication.

Local government rules are to be promulgated by orders signed by the governors of provinces, chairpersons of autonomous regions, mayors, or governors of autonomous prefectures.

Article 86: After department rules are signed and released, they are to be promptly published in the Gazette of the State Council or Department and on the Chinese Government Legal Information Network, as well as in newspapers with a national circulation.

After local government rules are signed and released, they are to be promptly published in the Gazette of the People Government and on the Chinese Government Legal Information Network, as well as in newspapers with a national circulation.

The text of rules as published in the Gazette of the State Council, departmental gazettes, or gazettes of local people’s governments is the standard text.

CHAPTER V: APPLICATION; RECORDING AND REVIEW

Article 87: The Constitution has the highest legal force; no law, administrative regulation, local regulation, autonomous regulation or separate regulation, or rule may contravene the Constitution.

Article 88: The force of laws is higher than that of administrative regulations, local regulations, and rules.

The force of administrative regulations is higher than that of local regulations and rules.

Article 89: The force of local regulations is higher than that of the rules of local governments at or below the corresponding level.

The force of rules formulated by the people’s government of a province or an autonomous region is higher than that of rules formulated by the people’s government of a districted city or an autonomous prefecture within its administrative region.

Article 90: Where autonomous regulations or separate regulations lawfully make varying provisions of laws, administrative regulations, or local regulations, such provisions of the autonomous regulations or separate regulations are to be applied in the corresponding autonomous area.

Where special economic zone regulations adjust provisions of laws, administrative regulations, or local regulations on the basis of an authorization, such those provisions of the special economic zone regulations are to be applied in the corresponding special economic zone.

Article 91: Different departmental rules have the same force, as do departmental rules and local government rules, and they are to be applied within their respective scope of authority.

Article 92: Where special provisions are inconsistent with general provisions in the laws, administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations and separate regulations, or rules formulated by the same organ, the special provisions are to be applied; where new provisions are inconsistent with old provisions, the new provisions are to be applied.

Article 93: Laws, administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations and separate regulations, and rules are not retroactive, except for special provisions that are made to better protect the rights and interests of citizens, legal persons, and other organizations.

Article 94: When there is an inconsistency in laws regarding the same matter between a new general provision and an old special provisions, and the applicable provision can not be determined, a ruling is to be made by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

When there is an inconsistency in administrative regulations between a new general provision and an old special provision on the same matter, and the applicable provision cannot be determined, the State Council is to make a ruling.

Article 95: When local regulations and rules are inconsistent, the relevant organs are to make a ruling in accordance with the following provisions on the scope of authority:

(1) when a new general provision and an old special provision formulated by the same organ are inconsistent, the formulating organ is to make a ruling;

(2) when local regulations and departmental rules have inconsistent provisions on the same matter, and the applicable provision cannot be determined, the State Council is to issue an opinion; where the State Council finds that the local regulations shall apply, it shall decide to apply the local regulations in the locality; where [the State Council] finds that the departmental rules shall apply, it shall request the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress to make a ruling;

(3) when different departmental rules, or when departmental rules and local government rules, have inconsistent provisions on the same matter, the State Council is to make a ruling.

When regulations formulated in accordance with an authorization have provisions inconsistent with laws, and the applicable provision cannot be determined, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is to make a ruling.

Article 96: Where any of the following circumstances applies to laws, administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations, special regulations, or rules, the relevant organ are to revise or repeal it pursuant to the authority granted in Article 97 of this Law.

(1) they exceed the scope of authority;

(2) Inferior legislation violates the provisions of superior legislation;

(3) Different rules have inconsistent provisions on the same matter, and it is ruled that one of the provisions shall be modified or annulled;

(4) The provision of a rule is found inappropriate and shall be modified or annulled;

(5) They violate legally prescribed procedures.

Article 97: The authority to modify or annul laws, administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulation, separate regulations, or rules is as follows:

(1) The National People’s Congress has the authority to revise or repeal any improper law enacted by its Standing Committee, and to cancel any autonomous or special regulations approved by its Standing Committee in violation of the Constitution or the provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 66 hereof;

(2) The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress has the authority to repeal any administrative regulation which contravenes the Constitution or any law, and to repeal any local regulations which contravene the Constitution or any law or administrative regulation, and to repeal any autonomous regulations or special regulations approved by the Standing Committee of the People’s Congress of any province, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality in violation of the Constitution or the provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 75 of this Law;

(3) The State Council has the authority to modify or annul any inappropriate departmental rule or local government rule;

(4) The people’s congress of a province, an autonomous region, or a directly governed municipality has the authority to modify or annul any inappropriate local regulations formulated or approved by its standing committee;

(5) The standing committee of a local people’s congress has the authority to annul any inappropriate rule formulated by the people’s government at the same level;

(6) The people’s government of a province or an autonomous region has the authority to modify or annul any inappropriate rule formulated by the people’s government at the level below;

(7) An authorizing organ has the authority to annul any regulations formulated by an authorized organ that exceed the scope of authorization or violate the purpose of the authorization and may annul the authorization when necessary.

Article 98: Administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations, separate regulations, and rules shall be filed with the relevant organs for recording within 30 days of promulgation in accordance with the following provisions:

(1) Administrative regulations are filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress for recording;

(2) Local regulations formulated by the people’s congresses of provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities and their standing committees are filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and the State Council for recording; and local regulations formulated by the people’s congresses of districted cities or autonomous prefectures and their standing committees are filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and the State Council for recording by the standing committees of the people’s congresses of [the relevant] provinces or autonomous regions;

(3) Autonomous regulations and separate regulations formulated by the people’s congresses of autonomous prefectures or autonomous counties are filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and the State Council for recording by the standing committees of the people’s congresses of [the relevant] provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities; when autonomous regulations and separate regulations are filed for recording, any adjustment of laws, administrative regulations, or local regulations shall be explained;

(4) Departmental rules and local government rules are filed with the State Council for recording; local government rules shall be concurrently filed with the standing committees of the people’s congresses at the same level for recording; and rules formulated by the people’s government of a districted city or an autonomous prefecture shall be concurrently filed with the standing committee of the people’s congress and the people’s government of [the relevant] province or autonomous region;

(5) Regulations formulated upon the authorization shall be filed with the authorizing organ stipulated in the authorization decision. The regulations formulated by the special economic zones to be filed shall state the appropriate adaptations to the laws, administrative regulations and local regulations.

Article 99: When the State Council, the Central Military Commission, the Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuratorate and the standing committees of the people's congresses of the provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government consider that administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations or separate regulations contradict the Constitution or laws, they may submit to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress written requests for examination, and the working offices of the Standing Committee shall refer the requests to the relevant special committees for examination and suggestions.

When State organs other than those mentioned in the preceding paragraph, public organizations, enterprises and institutions or citizens consider that administrative regulations, local regulations, autonomous regulations or separate regulations contradict the Constitution or laws, they may submit to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress written suggestions for examination, and the working offices of the Standing Committee shall study the suggestions and shall, when necessary, refer them to the relevant special committees for examination and suggestions.

The special committees and the Standing Committee working bodies may conduct active review of normative documents sent for recording.

Article 100: Where during review or research special committees or the standing committee of the National People's Congress find that an administrative regulation or local provisions, autonomous or special regulations conflict with the Constitution or laws, they may submit a written review or research comment to the drafting organ; a joint review meeting may also be called between the Law Committee and the relevant special committee or the Standing Committee's operation office, requesting that the drafting organ attend to give an explanation, and then submit additional written review comments. The organ that has formulated the regulations shall, within two months, study and put forth suggestions as to whether to revise the regulations, and shall give feedback to the Law Committee and other relevant special committees of the National People's Congress.

Where the Law Committee of the National People's Congress, relevant special committees and the working office of the Standing Committee submit review or research comments to the drafting organ on the basis of the preceding paragraph, and the drafting organ follows the comments to adjust or annul the administrative regulation, local provisions, autonomous regulations or special regulations, the review is concluded.

Where upon review and research, the the Law Committee of the National People's Congress, relevant special committees or the working office of the Standing Committee find that administrative regulation, local provisions, autonomous regulations or special regulations conflict with the Constitution or Law, and the drafting organ does not revise them, a proposal or suggestion to have it withdrawn shall be sent to the Chairman's Committee, and the Chairman's Committee will make a decision to submit it to the Standing Committee for deliberation and decision.

Article 101: Relevant special committees and the working office of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress shall follow the requirements to give feedback on the condition of review and research to the national organ that recommended review, social groups, enterprises and public institutions and citizens for feedback, and may disclose it to the public.

Article 102: The procedures whereby other organs receiving filings review the local regulations, autonomous regulations, separate regulations, and rules filed for recording shall be prescribed by the organs receiving filings in accordance with the principle of preserving the uniformity in the legal system.

Chapter VI: Supplementary Provisions

Article 103: The Central Military Commission formulates military regulations according to the Constitution and the laws.

The various headquarters, divisions, and military areas of the Central Military Commission , and the Chinese People's Armed Police Forces, may formulate military rules consistent with their scope of authority in accordance with the relevant laws and military decrees, decisions and orders.

Military regulations and military rules are to be implemented within the armed forces.

The Central Military Commission is to prescribe the measures for formulating, revising, and repealing military regulations and military rules in accordance with the principles prescribed by this Law.

Article 104: Interpretations on the specific application of laws in adjudication or procuratorate work that are issued by the Supreme People's Court or Supreme People's Procuratorate shall primarily target specific articles of laws, and be consistent with the goals, principles and original meaning of the legislation. Where encountering the situation provided for in the second paragraph of Article 45 of this Law, a request for a legislative interpretation, or a bill to formulate or revise relevant law, shall be submitted to the National People's Congress Standing Committee.

Interpretations on the specific application of laws in adjudicatory or procuratorial work that are issued by the Supreme People’s Court or Supreme People’s Procuratorate shall be filed with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress for recording within 30 days of promulgation.

Adjudicatory and procuratorial organs other than the Supreme People’s Court and Supreme People’s Procuratorate must not issue interpretations on the specific application of laws.

Article 105: This Law shall go into effect on July 1, 2000.

 

 

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12 Comments

  1. ewan0707 ewan0707 2015/03/19

    The last sentence “广东省东莞市和中山市、甘肃省嘉峪关市、海南省三沙市,比照适用本决定有关赋予设区的市地方立法权的规定。 ” only appears in the amending decision and not in the amended law as published by the NPC. See http://www.npc.gov.cn/npc/dbdhhy/12_3/2015-03/18/content_1930713.htm.

    Also, the article numbers referred to in Articles 96, 97, etc. of the amended law have been updated to reflect the amendment. Also see the link above.

    • CLT CLT Post author | 2015/03/19

      Thanks, I’m pretty sure the numbering is right with the final draft, but that sentence somehow didn’t get deleted! It’s gone now.

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  3. […] bill. Since 2013, it has been asking for comments multiple times for the same bill. In 2015, it codified “legislative openness” as a guiding principle for lawmaking. Most recently, in the summer of […]

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