Five laws and 14 governmental regulations promulgated by the State Council went into force on the very first day of 2002.
The five laws are the revised law on judges, the amendments to the law on procurators, the revised law on lawyers, the law on desertification prevention and control, and the law on management of maritime space utilization.
The first three laws stipulate that from now on new judges, procurators and lawyers must have earned a diploma from a four-year university.
Most of the 14 regulations were issued by the State Council after China's entry into the World Trade Organization, and they all aim to readjust administrative practices previously adopted by governmental departments.
Two regulations focused on the promulgation procedures of governmental regulations and provisions, aiming to improve the transparency of promulgation procedures, simplify administrative procedures and help change the functions of governmental departments.
Several provisions issued by the Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuratorate and some ministries also went into force as of today.
(People's Daily January 2, 2002)