China’s Peoples’ Liberation Army (PLA) plans to end all commercial activities such as livestock production, house renting and medical services in three years, as part of the on-going military reform.
Governments in provincial-level regions, including Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Chongqing and Guangdong, have set up interdepartmental teams to work with military authorities to push forward the efforts, Xinhua News Agency reports, adding that the Supreme People's Court has also established a panel to help the military deal with related legal and judiciary affairs.
In February, the Central Military Commission ordered the PLA and the Armed Police Force to eradicate all commercial activities within three years. The top military body requested units stop signing new contracts and negotiate with civilian clients to cancel existing ones.
Senior Colonel Gong Fangbin, a political education researcher at PLA National Defense University, was quoted as saying that several corruption cases involving senior officers were closely connected to the military's commercial activities.
The military's involvement in commercial sectors also aroused public suspicion about whether the PLA was focused on honing its combat capabilities and whether defense funds were properly used.