Constitution of the People’s Republic of China – Chapter III Section 1

Chapter III The Structure of the State

 

Section 1 The National People’s Congress

 

Article 57 The National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China is the supreme organ of state power. Its permanent body is the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

 

Article 58 The National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee exercise the legislative power of the State.

 

Article 59 The National People’s Congress is composed of deputies elected from the provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central Government, and special administrative regions, and of deputies elected from the armed forces. All the minority nationalities are entitled to appropriate representation.

 

Election of deputies to the National People’s Congress is conducted by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

 

The number of deputies to the National People’s Congress and the procedure of their election are prescribed by law.

 

Article 60 The National People’s Congress is elected for a term of five years.

 

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress must ensure the completion of election of deputies to the succeeding National People’s Congress two months prior to the expiration of the term of office of the current National People’s Congress. Should extraordinary circumstances prevent such an election, it may be postponed and the term of office of the current National People’s Congress extended by the decision of a vote of more than two-thirds of all those on the Standing Committee of the current National People’s Congress. The election of deputies to the succeeding National People’s Congress must be completed within one year after the termination of such extraordinary circumstances.

 

Article 61 The National People’s Congress meets in session once a year and is convened by its Standing Committee. A session of the National People’s Congress may be convened at any time the Standing Committee deems it necessary or when more than one-fifth of the deputies to the National People’s Congress so propose.

 

When the National People’s Congress meets, it elects a Presidium to conduct its session.

 

Article 62 The National People’s Congress exercises the following functions and powers:

 

(1) to amend the Constitution;

 

(2) to supervise the enforcement of the Constitution;

 

(3) to enact and amend basic laws governing criminal offences, civil affairs, the State organs and other matters;

 

(4) to elect the President and the Vice-President of the People’s Republic of China;

 

(5) to decide on the choice of the Premier of the State Council upon nomination by the President of the People’s Republic of China, and on the choice of the Vice-Premiers, State Councillors, Ministers in charge of ministries or commissions, the Auditor-General and the Secretary-General of the State Council upon nomination by the Premier;

 

(6) to elect the Chairman of the Central Military Commission and, upon nomination by the Chairman, to decide on the choice of all other members of the Central Military Commission;

 

(7) to elect the President of the Supreme People’s Court;

 

(8) to elect the Procurator-General of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate;

 

(9) to examine and approve the plan for national economic and social development and the report on its implementation;

 

(10) to examine and approve the State budget and the report on its implementation;

 

(11) to alter or annul inappropriate decisions of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress;

 

(12) to approve the establishment of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government;

 

(13) to decide on the establishment of special administrative regions and the systems to be instituted there;

 

(14) to decide on questions of war and peace; and

 

(15) to exercise such other functions and powers as the supreme organ of state power should exercise.

 

Article 63 The National People’s Congress has the power to remove from office the following persons:

 

(1) the President and the Vice-President of the People’s Republic of China;

 

(2) the Premier, Vice-Premiers, State Councillors, Ministers in charge of ministries or commissions, the Auditor-General and the Secretary-General of the State Council;

 

(3) the Chairman of the Central Military Commission and other members of the Commission;

 

(4) the President of the Supreme People’s Court; and

 

(5) the Procurator-General of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate.

 

Article 64 Amendments to the Constitution are to be proposed by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress or by more than one-fifth of the deputies to the National People’s Congress and adopted by a vote of more than two-thirds of all the deputies to the Congress.

 

Laws and resolutions are to be adopted by a majority vote of all the deputies to the National People’s Congress.

 

Article 65 The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is composed of the following:

 

the Chairman;

the Vice-Chairmen;

the Secretary-General; and

the members.

 

Minority nationalities are entitled to appropriate representation on the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

 

The National People’s Congress elects, and has the power to recall, members of its Standing Committee.

 

No one on the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress shall hold office in any of the administrative, judicial or procuratorial organs of the State.

 

Article 66 The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is elected for the same term as the National People’s Congress; it shall exercise its functions and powers until a new Standing Committee is elected by the succeeding National People’s Congress.

 

The Chairman and Vice-Chairmen of the Standing Committee shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.

 

Article 67 The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress exercises the following functions and powers:

 

(1) to interpret the Constitution and supervise its enforcement;

 

(2) to enact and amend laws, with the exception of those which should be enacted by the National People’s Congress;

 

(3) to partially supplement and amend, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, laws enacted by the National People’s Congress, provided that the basic principles of these laws are not contravened;

 

(4) to interpret laws;

 

(5) to review and approve, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, partial adjustments to the plan for national economic and social development or to the State budget that prove necessary in the course of their implementation;

 

(6) to supervise the work of the State Council, the Central Military Commission, the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate;

 

(7) to annul those administrative regulations, decisions or orders of the State Council that contravene the Constitution or other laws;

 

(8) to annul those local regulations or decisions of the organs of state power of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government that contravene the Constitution, other laws or administrative regulations;

 

(9) to decide, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, on the choice of Ministers in charge of ministries or commissions, the Auditor-General or the Secretary-General of the State Council upon nomination by the Premier of the State Council;

 

(10) to decide, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, on the choice of other members of the Central Military Commission upon nomination by the Chairman of the Commission;

 

(11) to appoint or remove, at the recommendation of the President of the Supreme People’s Court, the Vice-Presidents and Judges of the Supreme People’s Court, members of its Judicial Committee and the President of the Military Court;

 

(12) to appoint or remove, at the recommendation of the Procurator-General of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the Deputy Procurators-General and procurators of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, members of its Procuratorial Committee and the Chief Procurator of the Military Procuratorate, and to approve the appointment or removal of the chief procurators of the people’s procuratorates of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government;

 

(13) to decide on the appointment or recall of plenipotentiary representatives abroad;

 

(14) to decide on the ratification or abrogation of treaties and important agreements concluded with foreign states;

 

(15) to institute systems of titles and ranks for military and diplomatic personnel and of other specific titles and ranks;

 

(16) to institute State medals and titles of honour and decide on their conferment;

 

(17) to decide on the granting of special pardons;

 

(18) to decide, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, on the proclamation of a state of war in the event of an armed attack on the country or in fulfilment of international treaty obligations concerning common defence against aggression;

 

(19) to decide on general or partial mobilization;

 

(20) to decide on entering into the state of emergency throughout the country or in particular provinces, autonomous regions, or municipalities directly under the Central Government; and

 

(21) to exercise such other functions and powers as the National People’s Congress may assign to it.

 

Article 68 The Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress directs the work of the Standing Committee and convenes its meetings. The Vice-Chairmen and the Secretary-General assist the Chairman in his work.

 

The Chairman, the Vice-Chairmen and the Secretary-General constitute the Council of Chairmen which handles the important day-to-day work of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

 

 

Article 69 The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is responsible to the National People’s Congress and reports on its work to the Congress.

 

Article 70 The National People’s Congress establishes a Nationalities Committee, a Law Committee, a Finance and Economic Committee, an Education, Science, Culture and Public Health Committee, a Foreign Affairs Committee, an Overseas Chinese Committee and such other special committees as are necessary. These special committees work under the direction of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress when the Congress is not in session.

 

The special committees examine, discuss and draw up relevant bills and draft resolutions under the direction of the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee.

 

Article 71 The National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee may, when they deem it necessary, appoint committees of inquiry into specific questions and adopt relevant resolutions in the light of their reports.

 

All organs of State, public organizations and citizens concerned are obliged to furnish the necessary information to the committees of inquiry when they conduct investigations.

 

Article 72 Deputies to the National People’s Congress and members of its Standing Committee have the right, in accordance with procedures prescribed by law, to submit bills and proposals within the scope of the respective functions and powers of the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee.

 

Article 73 Deputies to the National People’s Congress and members of the Standing Committee have the right, during the sessions of the Congress and the meetings of the Committee, to address questions, in accordance with procedures prescribed by law, to the State Council or the ministries and commissions under the State Council, which must answer the questions in a responsible manner.

 

Article 74 No deputy to the National People’s Congress may be arrested or placed on criminal trial without the consent of the Presidium of the current session of the National People’s Congress or, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, without the consent of its Standing Committee.

 

Article 75 Deputies to the National People’s Congress may not be held legally liable for their speeches or votes at its meetings.

 

Article 76 Deputies to the National People’s Congress must play an exemplary role in abiding by the Constitution and other laws and keeping State secrets and, in public activities, production and other work, assist in the enforcement of the Constitution and other laws.

 

Deputies to the National People’s Congress should maintain close contact with the units which elected them and with the people, heed and convey the opinions and demands of the people and work hard to serve them.

 

Article 77 Deputies to the National People’s Congress are subject to supervision by the units which elected them. The electoral units have the power, through procedures prescribed by law, to recall deputies they elected.

 

Article 78 The organization and working procedures of the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee are prescribed by law.

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