[JURIST] A new law to protect private property in China was presented to the Chinese legislature on Thursday. The law, in the making [JURIST news archive] since 1993, would define the scope of public and private property to advance the developing socialist market economy, according to its proponents. In his speech [text] to the fifth session of the Tenth National People's Congress [official website] now underway in Beijing, NPC Standing Committee Vice Chairman Wang Zhaoguo [official profile] said protecting "lawful property accumulated through hard work" would help economic development and improve the living conditions of the Chinese people
The absence of clear-cut property laws in China [JURIST news archive] has meant that local officials can expropriate property from businesses and private citizens without compensation and convert it into commercial real estate. The draft law is supported by China's entrepreneurial community; it is expected to pass the legislature [People's Daily report], although its margin of support is uncertain. AP has more. The People's Daily has additional coverage.