Wednesday, October 3, 2007

FOI Monthly Report in Shanghai (August)

Taken from Shanghai Informatization Commission and translated by Ben Wei

There are 417 requests received by Shanghai Governments in August 2007. 407 requests (including the number of requests received last month) have been responded in this month. Of which, 272 were granted in full, accounting for 66.8%, while only 22 in part (5.4%). 113 (27.8%) were refused. Of these refusals, 25 were refused as the information requested are not held by the relative departments, 40 were refused as the information requested is not existed, and 10 was rejected as the information requested is unclear. The information requested by 10 applicants did not fall into the scope of information defined in Shanghai FOI legislation. 21 requests fell into the stipulated six FOI exemptions. Exemptions of state secrets and deliberation were typically used in this month. The rest (7) fell into “other reasons”, mainly due to withdrawal of access requests and letters.

Letters: the system of letters and visits can be traced back to the primitive society in the reign of Rao and Xun, and this system is inherent in today’s China. Regulations on Letters and Visits in China were firstly published on 28 October 1995, and these Regulations were repealed in 2005. The new Regulations on Letters and Visits were adopted on 5 January 2005, and went into effect on 1 May 2005. These Regulations allow ‘citizens, legal persons or other organizations to give information, make comments or suggestions or lodge complaints to all government authorities through correspondence, e-mails, faxes, phone calls, visits, and so on’. (Article 2)

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