In recent years, the number of social organizations has been increasing at a steadily fast rate. According to officials speaking at the press conference for the 14th Five-Year Plan on the Development of Civil Affairs, by the end of May 2021, the number of domestic social organizations had reached 900,000, including 2,289 national organizations distributed throughout every field and industry.
At the same time, the country’s social organizations have shifted away from focusing on the quantity to improving the quality of their services. The Party and the State Council have outlined the agendas for enhancing the development and quality of social organizations and announced stricter requirements for registration.
Despite the slightly slower rate of increase in the number of newly registered social organizations in the past few years, the Ministry of Civil Affairs said that this was not down to registration restrictions, but simply a consequence of higher registration standards and a requirement for organizations to promote high quality development. And the updated guidelines are seen as indispensable for improvements in the quality, structure, scale, speed, efficiency, and safety of social organizations.
The Ministry of Civil Affairs will focus on strengthening the legal construction of social organizations through the following steps:
- Cooperating proactively with the Ministry of Justice to draft the Regulations on Registration and Administration of Social Organizations, enhancing the registration supporting policies, and improving the registration system;
- Promoting the effective supervision of the Party and collaboration between the Party and the administrative directors in social organizations, and further implementing the “registration, annual inspection, evaluation” system;
- Scrutinizing new registrations more carefully, strengthening the scrutiny of the qualifications held by social organizations’ founders and directors, as well as organizations’ names and service areas; strengthening the argument for the necessity of establishing social organizations;
- Enhancing the system for canceling registrations, developing programs for cleaning out “zombie” social organizations and accelerating their exit from the sector, and continuously improving the structure of social organizations.