USEUROPEAFRICAASIA中文双语FrançaisHOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELWATCHTHISSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperMOBILEOpinionCartoonsEditorialsOp-EdColumnistsFrom the PressOpinion LineFrom the ReadersBureau ChiefForum TrendsHome / Opinion / Opinion LineMove to end any price-fixing of utilities
China Daily | Updated:2017-10-26 07:54Technicians use an intelligent drone to inspect a transformer in Chuzhou, Anhui province. [Photo/China Daily]THE NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT and Reform Commission, Chinas top economic planner, said on Tuesday it will carry out targeted supervision of water, electricity, heating and telecommunication charges across the country starting from Nov 1. Beijing Youth Daily commented on Wednesday:The top economic planners decision to step up supervision on a number of utility charges is an example of improved governance.
China has cut administrative fees on businesses by more than 420 billion yuan ($63.38 billion) during the past five years, from reducing operation service fees and power use costs to exemptions of highway tolls.
Similar attempts made nationwide to regulate the prices of fundamental services have made progress in correcting overcharges and relieving citizens of unreasonable fees, but not enough. Most water and heating suppliers are run by local governments, and the inspections on their service charges are basically conducted by local price watchdogs, who may be tempted to go easy on these State-owned enterprises.
In many cases, the transaction records of such State-owned enterprises are held by their city-level legal entities or above, meaning that pricing bureaus at lower levels will struggle to get the information and conduct thorough investigations. The absence of third-party, nongovernmental evaluations, too, puts a big question mark on the supervision by price watchdogs.
It is hoped, therefore, that the upcoming nationwide supervision will overcome existing flaws and keep the charges of everyday services at reasonable levels.
On the one hand, the inspection, designed by the NDRC and carried out by provincial pricing authorities, requires full support from and seamless communication with local governments. On the other hand, local authorities should take the inspection as an opportunity to improve their work.
In particular, extra efforts are needed to get rid of supervisory flaws as well as behind-the-scene nepotism. A third-party evaluation system should also be introduced to keep at bay misconduct by local inspectors.Related StoriesExpert calls for water price overhaulToutunhe people handle water price raising with saving plansSuggestions on building a water price system for the benefited areas of South-to-North Water Diversion ProjectBeijing to raise tap water price in MayCartoonsGlobal attention on the 19th CPC National CongressLeading China to prosperityGreat achievementsChorusRoad map to a great modern socialist countryNew era in building moderately prosperous societyMost Viewed in 24 HoursFroum trendsExpat views on Chinas efforts to end povertyShould swimming be compulsory for college students?ColumnistsChina knows the importance of pollution controlCorporate scams deal a big blow to Japans imageForumFeatured ContributorsIn search of TurpanChina and Brazil widening possibilities for partnershipsChina Daily Bureau ChiefsChongqing and Chengdu City Cluster on faster trackXi-Ma meeting brings historic opportunitiesStar BloggersThe past 5 years: Chinas global leadershipGetting stared at in China: Cultural curiosity, globalization and racismBACK TO THE TOPHOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELWATCHTHISSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperMOBILECopyright 1995 -var oTime = new Date();
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