China Revises National Holiday System – AP

After weeks of sometimes fierce debate online, the Chinese government has finally decided to go ahead with reforms of the national holiday system. From the Associated Press:

Under the changes, which start next year, the weeklong May Day vacation will be replaced by three traditional, one-day holidays: grave-sweeping day, the dragon boat festival and the mid-autumn festival, scattered throughout the year. May Day itself will be a separate one-day holiday.

China’s official Xinhua News Agency said the government also announced that employees of government agencies, as well as state-run and private companies, will be able to take paid vacations after one year of service. [Full Text]

Critics of the new policy, including star Phoenix TV reporter Rose Luqiu, argued last month that the government had no system in place to force private companies to comply and questioned the wording of an online survey showing huge support for the changes.

Not that the complaints mattered much. As Luqiu noted: “If [the government] proposes a change, it’s going to happen. If public opinion turns out in favor of the change, that’s just ‘adding more flowers to the brocade.'”

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