China is pressuring officials to protect cultural heritage with a lifetime liability backtracking system to hold negligent officials accountable even after they retire.
Gu Yucai, vice head of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, revealed on Friday at a press briefing that an official document had been reviewed and initially approved by the State Council, China's Cabinet, to improve the protection of cultural heritage.
The document will include the ability to pursue officials' liabilities without expiration date -- even after the officials in question leave the posts due to transfers, promotion or retirement, Gu said.
"Local government officials have a leading responsibility and should prioritize cultural heritage protection in their agenda. It will also be a significant basis for their work evaluation," Gu said, citing the document.
Gu stressed that, in cases of severe damage to or loss of items, officials directly responsible as well as their superiors, principals of their superior organizations and local government will all be held accountable.
The document also covers policies that encourage input from individuals and social groups in cultural heritage protection, developing cultural products, promoting the value of cultural heritage and improve cultural heritage inspections.