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China to launch national probe into policy implementation: media

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By Reuters
China to launch national probe into policy implementation: media
FILE PHOTO - Red flags flutter outside the Great Hall of the People before the second plenary session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Beijing, China March 8, 2018. REUTERS/Aly Song   -   Copyright  ALY SONG(Reuters)

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China will conduct a series of “targeted inspections” this year in a bid to ensure that central government policies are being properly implemented at the local level, state news agency Xinhua said late on Monday, citing a senior government official.

Xiao Jie, secretary-general of China’s cabinet, the State Council, said the inspections would focus on the way local governments implement policies relating to priority issues such as cutting poverty, tackling pollution, promoting innovation and revitalising the rural economy.

China’s central government has traditionally struggled to impose its will on local authorities worried about the impact of new legislation on jobs and economic growth.

But Beijing has stepped up efforts to ensure that the regions carry out its policies and guidelines, particularly when it comes to protecting the environment.

The central government has also been cracking down on what it calls “perfunctory” or “formalistic” behaviour by local authorities, accusing officials of implementing the letter of the law instead of its spirit.

(Reporting by David Stanway; editing by Richard Pullin)