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On Bringing in Third Party Assessments for Important Legislative Matters where there is Larger Controversy

Title: The General Office of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Notification on Issuing the "Work Specifications for Bringing in Third Party Assessments for Important Legislative Matters Where There Is Relatively Large Controversy"
Promulgating Entities: General Office of the NPC Standing Committee
Reference number: 常办秘字[2017]238号
Promulgation Date: 2017-12-18
Expiration date: 
Source of text:

Work Specifications on Bringing in Third Party Assessments for Important Legislative Matters where there is Larger Controversy

Article 1: These specifications are drafted so as to thoroughly advance scientific, democratic, and lawful legislation, to give full play to the active role of social forces in legislative work, to promptly and properly resolve and handle important legislative matters in legislation where the controversy is relatively large, and to incorporate the actual legislative practice.

Article 2: "Third party assessment" as used in these Specifications refers to activity by establishments other than interested stakeholders using scientific, systematic, and standardized assessment measures to conduct special research and comprehensive assessment on important legislative matters where the controversy is quite large, and submitting an assessment report to provide a reference in legislative decision-making.

Article 3: Where there is a larger controversy among the relevant sectors regarding the following important legislative matters, draft laws included on the agenda for sessions of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, a third party assessment may be brought in:

(1) The scope of adjustment of the draft law;

(2) The necessity and feasibility of major systems and important norms proposed by the draft law;

(3) Major adjustments in the draft law of the relationship between the rights and obligations of natural persons, legal persons and unincorporated organizations;

(4) the meaning of important legal concepts;

(5) Other important issues in the draft law.

Article 4: The retention of third parties to carry out assessment is to be upon submission of the matter for assessment by the Legislative Affairs Commission of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress as needed for work and after solicitation of comments from the relevant special committees and working commissions, and reporting to the leaders of the of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for approval.

The Legislative Affairs Commission is to undertake the specific work of third party assessments, and be the party that commissions third party assessments.

Article 5: The commission of a third party assessment may be by directed commissions, bidding or other methods of commission.

When choosing a third party, it shall be done openly and transparently, and a retention agreement shall be signed with the retained third party, putting forward the specific matters and requirements of the retention.

Article 6: The commissioning party may retain between one and three third parties to conduct assessments on the subject of the retention, as needed for the work.

The retained third party must not pass the assessment work to other institutions or individuals.

Article 7: Where a third party is retained to carry out an assessment, the costs of the assessment are to be reasonably determined on the basis of circumstances such as the assessments work load and difficulty, and they are to be specifically provided for in the retention agreement.

Article 8: Based on the specific circumstances of the subject of the retention, institutions of higher learning, scientific research establishments, professional think tanks, and other such units may be selected as the retained third party. The retained third party shall meet the following conditions:

(1) Be representative and authoritative in the relevant fields and have a good public reputation;

(2) a sound organizational structure, with standardized internal management;

(3) have research forces possessing the relevant professional knowledge and skill, and have relatively strong experience and capacity for data collection and analysis, consultation on decision-making, and policy assessment;

(4) Independence in business relations, institutional affiliations, funding sources, and so forth, and no interest between the parties involved in dispute;

(5) Other conditions required to carry out the assessment.

Article 9: Bringing in third-party assessments is to proceed in accordance with the following procedures:

(1) Select the assessment body. Based on the subject of the assessment, determine the requirements and conditions, preferentially select a third party, and sign a retention agreement.

(2) Draft an assessment plan. The third party is to submit an assessment plan according to the requirements of the retention agreement, confirming the steps and standards for the assessment, and clarifying the assessment methods. After the assessment plan is reviewed and approved by the commissioning party, the assessing party is to organize the implementation.

(3) Carry out scientific assessment. The third party is to collect information and materials related to the assessment matter in accordance with the assessment plan, summarize the basic situation, conduct research and debate, and put together an assessment report.

(4) Check and accept the assessment results. The commissioning party is to check and accept the third-party assessment and its results, and the third party should conduct the assessment in strict accordance with the procedures, standards, and methods determined in the assessment plan. Where inconsistencies with the requirements of the assessment plan are discovered during the check and acceptance, the third party shall be requested to supplement the assessment in a certain period of time or conduct a new assessment. Where it has not passed the check and acceptance in the time provided, the commissioning party may terminate the agreement.

(5) Handover of assessment results. Perform formalities such as the hand over of the output and payment of assessment fees for assessment results that meet the agreed upon requirements. The commissioning party shall strengthen management of assessment funds, and the allocation of assessment funds shall be subject to strict examination and approval in accordance with the relevant financial management rules.

Article 10: As needed for the assessment, the third party may employ questionnaire surveys, case analysis, analysis of comparative legislation, cost-benefit analysis, and other methods to conduct the assessment and form the third party assessment report.

The third party assessment report shall include the following content:

(1) The basic assessment work situation;

(2) analysis and basis for the assessment content;

(3) assessment conclusions, opinions, and suggestions;

(4) signatures of those participating in the assessment and the seal of the assessment establishment;

(5) Other issues that need to be explained.

Article 11: The third party shall carry out the assessment work objectively, independently and fairly, and must not conduct activities that might affect the objectivity, independence and fairness of the assessment, and must not resort to misrepresentations or plagiarism.

Were a violation of rules or agreements has been verified through review, the commissioning party may, based on the circumstances, take the measures such as requesting corrections and canceling the retention.

Article 12: The third party assessment report shall be an an important consideration in coordinating and negotiating the matters in contention, and for researching revisions and improvements to the draft law and completing related legislative work.

When the draft law is submitted to the Law Committee of the National People's Congress for uniform deliberation, the relevant working commissions shall report and explain the situation of the third party assessment.

When the draft law is submitted to a session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for deliberation, the situation of the third party assessment may be reported, and the third party assessment report may be issued to the session as a reference material.

Article 13: After the draft law involved in the assessment is passed, the commissioning party may disclose the third party assessment report to the public as needed, except where it involves state secrets, commercial secrets, or personal privacy.

Units and individuals participating in third party assessments, shall have a duty to preserve the confidentiality of state secrets, commercial secrets, and individual privacy that they learn of in the course of assessment work.

The third party must not disclose circumstances of the assessment without the consent of the commissioning party and must not disclose or quote the assessment report to the public.

Article 14: The funds required for assessment by a third party are to be disbursed in accordance with the provisions of the state on budget management.

Article 15: These Specifications take effect from the date of promulgation.


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