BEIJING: Courtesy of the two sessions of the National People’s Congress, Chinese President Xi Jinping is attempting to bring the country’s digital sector under the centralized control of the Chinese Communist Party, reported Bitter Winter, a magazine on religious liberty and human rights.
The two new powerful and dangerous Chinese agencies — National Financial Regulatory Administration and National Data Bureau — mean more CCP control of the economy and the internet.
In his first speech at China’s puppet Parliament, whose role is to rubber-stamp what the Central Committee of the CCP decides, Xi celebrated the Party’s “victory” against Covid, tried to reassure about the economic data, and warned that China is under siege by the West, whose aim is to contain its growth and possibly overthrow the regime.
These may look like platitudes but are in fact the background of the two most significant decisions announced so far during the event. Since the West is attacking us, Xi insisted, we need more control and surveillance, including of the economic and financial sector, and certainly of the Internet (Xi’s usual obsession), because any weakness will be immediately exploited by the enemy, reported Bitter Winter.
The most important development is the liquidation of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC), which so far has been a very powerful agency regulating Chinese banking and finance.
In its place, a brand-new National Financial Regulatory Administration (NFRA) will be established to govern the mammoth China’s financial sector, although securities will not be included and will remain under the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), reported Bitter Winter.
The new NFRA will be under the direct administration of the State Council, while the old CBIRC was an independent agency under the State Council. This is not a minor change, as it means that the financial and banking sectors will be under stricter and more direct CCP control.
Another new institution emerging from the Two Sessions is the National Data Bureau (NDB), which will replace and absorb the Office of the Central Cybersecurity Commission (OCCC), under the direct supervision of the CCP’s Central Committee.
Together with the Digital China 2023 Plan, the establishment of the new Bureau is a new attempt at reaching the elusive goal of total control of the internet, reported Bitter Winter. (ANI)