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China: Defense Mobilization Law Approved

(Mar. 10, 2010) China's National People's Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC) approved the National Defense Mobilization Law on February 26, 2010; it was promulgated by President Hu Jintao and will become effective on July 1. (Li Yun & Yang Lei, PRC Defense Mobilization Law Promulgated; Has 14 chapters, 72 Articles, XINHUA, Mar. 3, 2010, World News Connection online subscription database, Doc. No. 201003031477.1_ef56006bad98790c.)

The new Law is designed to standardize national defense mobilization activities and has been based on China's own experiences combined with consultation on useful practices in other countries. Its provisions cover the organizational structure, including assigning of responsibilities, for national defense mobilization. It is intended to promote integration of military and civilian development, so as to coordinate preparation for peacetime and wartime emergencies. The Law's many articles also cover:

  • implementation pre-plans and statistical surveys;
  • construction projects and important products that are closely related to national defense;
  • reserves and the enlistment of reservists;
  • strategic material reserve and deployment;
  • scientific research and production and maintenance of military products;
  • prevention of and relief in war-related disasters;
  • national defense services;
  • requisition of civilian resources and related compensation; and
  • propaganda and public education. (Id.)

The Law has been described as giving broad powers to the military in times of crisis, when there is a threat to sovereignty and security. It establishes that in such cases the NPCSC can decide on and the President can initiate a general or partial mobilization. The mobilization will be governed by the NPCSC and the Central Military Committee of the Chinese Communist Party. A National Defense Mobilization Committee will be able to issue directives to businesses and other organizations during the mobilization period. (Chinese Regime Passes New Military Mobilization Law, NEW TANG DYNASTY TELEVISION (New York), Mar. 2, 2010, available at