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China unveils sweeping government shakeup plan

China plans to eliminate Railways Agency and will create a new super-agency in an effort to cut down on government waste.

Chinese leaders politburo 2013 2 27Enlarge
The seven members of China's top decision-making body. (AFP/Getty Images)

China released a plan on March 10 to streamline its government in an effort to reduce waste, including dissolving the problematic Ministry of Railways, in what will constitute the Asian nation's biggest reduction in ministries since 1998.

The streamlining hopes to define and restrict the central government's responsibilities, wrote AP, while speeding up the decision-making process and eliminating some of the need for permits.

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Among the chances will include the dissolution of the Ministry of Railways, whose duties will be split between the Ministry of Transportation and the China Railway Corporation, says Reuters.

The National Family Commission, responsible for the infamous One Child Policy, will be folded into the Ministry of Health, added Reuters — although the government insists that the policy will continue into the future.

Two government censorship arms — one for broadcasters and one for print media — will be merged together, added AP.

In an effort to improve China's checkered track record with food and drug safety, the authority in those matters will see an authority boost, added AP.

A new National Oceanic Administration will centralize and improve Chinese maritime law enforcement, noted the Times of India, in the wake of highly publicized clashes with Japan over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands.

"Departments of the State Council are now focusing too much on micro issues. We should attend to our duties and must not meddle in what is not in our business," the government plan read in part, according to the Beijing Review.

The State Council elaborated on the measures during a March 10  meeting of the People's Congress in Beijing, added the Times of India. New officials under Xi Jingping will be formalized soon.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/130310/china-unveils-sweeping-government-shakeup-plan