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'Olympic Holidays' for Beijing Games?
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For the duration of the 2008 Olympic Games residents of Beijing may have special holidays for the world's most important sporting event and public transport could be free.

The information was realized by Wei Jizhong, advisor to the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Games, at an event to announce the founding of the Beijing Olympic Legislation Coordination Group on April 11.

Wei said, "We suggest that the municipal government work out policies to encourage local residents to take holidays and use public transport during the period of the Games." Such an initiative is aimed at helping to ensure that the Games is run smoothly.

Beijing Vice Mayor Ji Lin explained the necessity for Olympic legislation at the event. He emphasized that those in authority should shoulder their responsibilities and if obligations were ignored, those involved should be held to account.

In the past, according to the coordination group, government administers the society by means of administrative orders and instructions on the occasion of big events. However, for the Olympics Games, a range of inter-related authorities will work together by clearly establishing their legal responsibilities and identifying their areas of power. Such an approach would promote efficiency, according to the vice mayor.

The new legislation will cover two major areas. One is to regulate various social issues, for instances, Olympic holidays, and the free public transport services. The other is to enact necessary provisions for the normal operation of the city so that various issues emerging during the Games can be solved according to law.

Currently 76 items have been proposed to be included in the legislation. They include public traffic, security guards, environmental protection, public health, volunteers, tourism, public security, and business activities.

( by Wang Ke, April 15, 2006)

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