fredag 4. mars 2022

China’s legislature to meet with economy, Ukraine backdrop

China’s 3,000-member ceremonial parliament will open its annual session Saturday with the government facing a slowing economy and international pressure over its refusal to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While domestic issues typically dominate the National People’s Congress, the war in Ukraine is highlighting the ideological confrontation between the American-led West and the competing world view of Beijing and Moscow. Any discussion of the conflict is expected to be muted, however, with the focus on boosting growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

The delegates do little lawmaking — that’s handled by the 176-member Standing Committee, which meets year-round. The vast majority of delegates, around 73% of whom are members of the ruling Communist Party, have separate careers and little background in parliamentary procedure or writing legislation.Rather, the party uses the Congress to announce broad goals for the economy and other issues including the environment and military spending, while receiving feedback from delegates on concerns among the grass roots. This year, it comes ahead of a key party meeting in November during which leader Xi Jinping is expected to be granted a third five-year term.