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CGTN: How does China ensure the people govern the country?

“Whole-process people’s democracy is the defining feature of socialist democracy; it is democracy in its broadest, most genuine, and most effective form,” Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, wrote in an article published on Friday.

His key statements about China’s system of people’s congresses and whole-process people’s democracy, which were published in the Qiushi Journal, emphasized the importance of ensuring the Chinese people run the country.

What is whole-process people’s democracy? How does China’s democratic system work? The story of renewable energy expert and legislator Zhang Tianren may help to explain.

As one of more than 2,000 deputies to the National People’s Congress (NPC), China’s top legislature, Zhang, also the chairman of a leading renewable energy enterprise, has been closely watching the development of green energy, carbon emissions and climate change for decades. Over the past 10 years, Zhang has submitted over 200 suggestions and proposals to the NPC.

During the annual NPC plenary meetings in 2023, Zhang submitted four proposals on amending the Environmental Protection Law and making climate change laws, as well as 27 suggestions on optimizing the production capacity of recycled lead and enhancing the battery recycling and new energy storage industries.

Over the years, China has accelerated its high-quality development and sped up its green transformation. In September 2020, President Xi announced that China aims to peak carbon emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060.

Zhang’s proposals and suggestions caught the attention of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment and the NPC Standing Committee.

A recent report by the legislative organ stated that Zhang’s proposal about making laws on addressing climate change and promoting carbon neutrality has been adopted, and it will “actively work with other departments to carry out research” and “make it into the annual legislative work schedule when the time is right.”

China has steadily improved the institutional guarantee system of people’s democracy, and gradually developed whole-process people’s democracy in national governance to ensure people’s extensive political participation.

Taking the first-ever Civil Code, which took effect in January 2021, as another example. The Code was compiled over five years, during which some 425,000 people provided 1,020,000 opinions.

“Whole-process people’s democracy in China not only has a complete set of institutions and procedures, but also has full-fledged civil participation,” Xi noted in the article published in the Qiushi Journal.–1reWMlUIk92/p.html

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