Construction Ministry Calls for Improved Notice and Comment System for Demolitions and Relocations

March 12, 2005

According to a Xinhua article published on the China Court Net Web site, the Ministry of Construction (MOC) has called for a stronger system of public notice and comment on plans for the demolition and relocation of urban homes and improved monitoring of compensation funds. An MOC official cited in the article reportedly said that many local governments have pursued construction while ignoring citizen property rights, lowering demolition and relocation standards, using coercive tactics, harming the legal rights and interests of residents, and endangering general social stability. The official confirmed that in 2005, the government will continue to "strictly control" the scope of demolition and relocation and undertake efforts to address abuses in the relocation process.

"Demolition and relocation" refers to the process through which authorities move urban residents from their homes to make way for new development. Over the last decade, massive development in China’s urban centers has forced the relocation of millions of residents. Corruption, abusive tactics, and social problems related to such relocations have caused significant social conflict. China’s State Council has warned that such conflict is so widespread that it is "influencing social stability and the normal order of production and life." For more information on demolitions and relocations and efforts by the Chinese government to address resulting problems, click here.