Civil Service of the People's Republic of China

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The civil service of the People's Republic of China is the administrative system of the traditional Chinese government which consists of all levels who run the day-to-day affairs in mainland China. The members of the civil service are selected through competitive examination.

As of year 2009, China now has about 10 million civil servants and are managed under the Civil Service Law.[1] Most of the civil servants work in government agencies and departments. State leaders and cabinet members, who normally would be considered politicians in political systems with competing political parties and elections, also come under the civil service in China. Civil servants are not necessarily members of the Communist Party, but 95 percent of civil servants in leading positions from division (county) level and above are Party members.[1]


Civil servants are found in a well-defined system of ranks. The rank of a civil servant determines what positions he/she may assume in the government or the military, how much political power he/she gets, and the level of benefits in areas such as transportation and healthcare.

The present new ranking system has 27 different ranks (from previously of total 15 levels) and a grade (dangci) system within each rank (at most 14 grades for each rank) to reflect seniority and performances.[2]

The 27 ranks are:

Rank[2] Post(s)
Rank 1 to 3 State-Leader level
Rank 4 to 6 Vice-State-Leader level
Rank 7 to 8 Ministerial (Provincial) level
Rank 9 to 10 Vice-Ministerial (Provincial) level
Rank 11 to 12 Bureau-Director level
Rank 13 to 14 Deputy-Bureau-Director level
Rank 15 to 16 Division-Head level
Rank 17 to 18 Deputy-Division-Head level
Rank 19 to 20 Section-Head level
Rank 21 to 22 Deputy-Section-Head level
Rank 23 to 24 Section member
Rank 25 to 27 Office worker


China has had a tradition of maintaining a large and well-organized civil service. In ancient times eligibility for employment in the civil service was determined by an Imperial examination system.

State Administration of Civil Service[edit]

The State Administration of Civil Service (SACS) was created in March 2008 by the National People's Congress (NPC). It is under the management of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (MHRSS), which resulted from the merger of the Ministry of Personnel and the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security. The function of the administration covers management, recruitment, assessment, training, rewards, supervision and other aspects related to civil service affairs. The SACS also has several new functions. These include drawing up regulations on the trial periods of newly enrolled personnel, further protecting the legal rights of civil servants and having the responsibility of the registration of civil servants under central departments. The SACS's establishment was part of the government's reshuffle in 2008. It aimed at a "super ministry" system to streamline government department functions.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Reformed Chinese Civil Service System". East Asian Institute Home Page at National University of Singapore. Retrieved December 7, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "China’a present professionalized civil service". East Asian Institute at National University of Singapore. Retrieved December 7, 2011. 

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