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Special> NPC & CPPCC Sessions 2009> Background
UPDATED: February 28, 2007 People's Daily Online
The Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference

Chairman of the 10th National Committee: Jia Qinglin


Wang Zhongyu Liao Hui Liu Yandong (female) Ngapoi Ngawang Jigme Ba Jin Pagbalha Geleg Namgyai Li Guixian Zhang Siqing Ding Guangxun Henry Ying Tung Fok Ma Man Kei Bai Lichen Luo Haocai Zhang Kehui Zhou Tienong Hao Jianxiu (female) Chen Kuiyuan Abdul'ahat Abdurixit Xu Kuangdi Li Zhaozhuo Huang Mengfu Wang Xuan Zhang Huaixi Li Meng

Secretary-general: Zheng Wantong.

The Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) is apatriotic united front organization led by the Communist Party of China (CPC).It is made up of deputies from the CPC, eight democratic parties, non-party democrats and people's organizations, deputies from various minority nationalities and from all walks of life, and Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao compatriots and returned overseas Chinese, as well as specially invited people.

The CPPCC is an important instrument of socialist democracy in China's political life. In accordance with the policy of "long-term coexistence and mutual supervision" between the CPC and the democratic parties and non-party personages, and the principle of "treating each other with all sincerity and sharing wealth or woe", the CPPCC participates in political consultations with regard to major state policies and important issues concerning the people's life, and exercises democratic supervision over the CPC and the People's Government by making suggestions and criticism, so as to help the state organs in improving their work, raising work efficiency, and overcoming bureaucracy.Such supervision differs from that by the National People's Congress (NPC). It has no legal effect. Known as the government's "think tank", the CPPCC committees at all levels contain large numbers of activists and public figures from various walks of life, experts and scholars in various fields.

The 1st Plenary Session of the CPPCC was held in Beijing in September 1949.Exercising the functions and powers of the NPC, the country's highest legislative body at that time, the CPPCC proclaimed the founding of the People's Republic of China. The CPPCC was named an organization for the Party's united front work after the convening of the 1st National People's Congress in September 1954.

Up to 1996, there had more than 3,000 CPPCC organizations at all levels throughout the country.

The number of the CPPCC National Committee members increased from 180 in 1949 to 2,196 for the 9th CPPCC National Committee in March 1998. The CPPCC local committees had a total of 461,000 members in 1996. The CPPCC National Committee is elected once every five years, and meets in session once a year.

In order to participate in the consultations and discussions of government policies, the CPPCC session always convenes simultaneously with the NPC, and its members attend the NPC as nonvoting deputies.

The Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) is the Chinese people's patriotic united front organization, a key institution of multi-party cooperation and political consultations under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), and a major form to promote socialist democracy in China's political life.

After the victory of the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression in 1945, the CPC and the Kuomintang decided during their negotiations in Chongqing to convene a political consultative conference and organize a new government.

The conference was convened on January 10, 1946 and attended by representatives of the Kuomintang, the CPC, the Democratic League, the Youth Party and noted public figures. In November of the same year, the Kuomintang unilaterally proclaimed the convention of a " National Assembly" in violation of the resolution of the political consultative conference and resulted in the dissolution of the conference. The first session of a new political consultative conference called CPPCC was held in Beijing in September 1949, functioning as the supreme state body.

The session adopted a "Common Program of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference" which bore the nature of a temporary constitution, proclaimed the founding of the People's Republic of China (PRC), elected the committee of the Central People's Government of the PRC with Mao Zedong as its chairman, and elected the First National Committee of the CPPCC. It also designated the Chinese capital, national flag and national anthem, and decided the way of numbering the years.

In September 1954, the National People's Congress, the supreme institution of state power in China, was set up and the CPPCC then ceased to function to make way for NPC. But it has continued to exist as China's patriotic united front organization with a broad representation and played a vital role in the country's political, economic, cultural and social affairs and international exchanges.

At present, the CPPCC consists of representatives of the CPC and eight non-Communist parties, people without party affiliations, people's organizations, and representatives from ethnic minorities and from all social strata. In addition, there are compatriots from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), Macao and Taiwan, returned overseas Chinese, and specially invited people.

The main functions of the CPPCC are political consultation, democratic supervision and participation in and deliberation of state affairs.

Political consultation means conferring on major policies of central and local governments, key policy decisions concerning the country's political, economic, cultural and social affairs before the decisions are made, or main issues involved in the process of carrying them out.

Democratic supervision means supervising, by means of offering suggestions and criticism over the implementation of the China's Constitution, relevant laws, regulations and major policies, over the work of state organs and their functionaries.

The participation in and deliberation of state affairs means to organize various parties, organizations, people from various ethnic groups and social sectors to take part in the country's political, economic, cultural and social life in various forms. The CPPCC has a National Committee and local committees, with a five-year term for committee members. A plenary session is held annually.

The Second Session of the Ninth National Committee of the CPPCC, with a total membership of 2,196, is to be held from March 3 to 11 in Beijing.

(Source: People's Daily Online)

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