Happy Niu 🐂Year to all blog followers and readers! Best wishes to all for good health, success in work and study, and all else!
In recent weeks I have been focusing on several longer pieces of writing and am still in “focus mode.”
While most of the Supreme People’s Court (SPC) has been taking a break, based on previous year’s reports, it is likely that the team of people working on drafting President Zhou Qiang’s speech to the National People’s Congress (NPC) are hard at work. I surmise that they will draw on January’s Central Political-Legal annual work conference, where responsibilities for implementing this year’s major tasks were allocated, and guidance from President Xi was transmitted. At that time, the Party leadership heard work reports from the SPC’s (and Supreme People’s Procuratorate’s) Party Group, so it seems likely that the report to the NPC will draw on that report as well.
Among the content that I expect to be included in the report is:
- successful transition to the Civil Code, including review of old judicial interpretations (and other judicial normative documents), canceling and amending old ones;
- successes in meeting the challenges that Covid-19 meant for the courts, including the increased use of online proceedings;
- smart courts and informatization;
- accomplishments of the Supreme People’s Court’s Intellectual Property Court, including its first anti-suit injunction;
- the issuance, for the first time, of reports on the judicial review of arbitration in 2019 and judicial assistance in civil and commercial matters between the Mainland and Hong Kong. The full text of the two reports has not yet been released to the public, so I surmise that they will be released during the NPC meeting;
- In the area of criminal law, likely the effective use of criminal proceedings in the battle against Covid-19;
- successes in the saohei (organized crime) campaign;
- successes in the area of environmental law, such as the recent signing of a framework agreement between the SPC and the leading small group on the protection of the Yellow River and the June, 2020 policy document on providing judicial services and guarantees to the protection and high quality development of the Yellow River;
- furthering of socialist core values, such as the guiding opinion issued on 18 February on integrating those values into judgments (最高人民法院印发《关于深入推进社会主义核心价值观融入裁判文书释法说理的指导意见) and
- judicial reforms such as the recently approved establishment of the Beijing Financial Court (the Shanghai Financial Court has been very busy since it was established) and the piloting of reforms to separate simple and complicated cases (the SPC recently submitted a midterm report to the NPC Standing Committee on the pilots).
We’ll see next month how accurate the above guesses are. In the meantime, additions or corrections are welcome.
The SPC New Year’s greetings are ©the SPC, found in this short video