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National honors system to boost public morality
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China is planning a national honors system, including implementing two regulations on administrative rewards and national emblems, to boost ethical morality, according to the Ministry of Personnel.

"Through a strict legal process, people who have made great contribution to the building of national morality will be awarded and honored in the name of the country," the People's Daily newspaper quoted an anonymous ministry official on Wednesday. He added the honors system stressed the core values of socialism.

The system, expected to be fully implemented in "several" years, would consist of multiple levels and cover various fields. After the approval of the National People's Congress (NPC) and its Standing Committee, the country's chairman would award recipients with emblems and honorary titles.

Since the founding of New China in 1949, the country had issued a series of regulations on awarding inventors, science researchers, civil servants and others. An official supreme honor system, however, remained a blind spot.

Some experts suggested the honors could also be granted to foreigners who had made extraordinary contribution to China in various fields.

Many Western countries, including the United States, France and New Zealand, have their own national honors system to reward its citizens for merit, service or bravery. Most are operated with multiple classes and different levels.

The British honors system, one of the oldest in the world, has evolved for more than 650 years, according to the UK Honours System website.

(Xinhua News Agency January 2, 2008)

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