China bans officials sending new year cards at public expense
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's ruling Communist Party on Friday banned officials from sending or printing new year cards or calendars if they have been paid for with public funds, the latest step in the government's crackdown on waste, extravagance and graft.
"The printing and production are more and more extravagant, and the waste is greater and greater," the central government said on its main website (www.gov.cn).
"This is not only an expression of formalism, but drives extravagance."
The order covers all government and party departments, state-owned industries and financial bodies, though an exception will be made for those which deal with foreigners and overseas Chinese, as long as they rein in costs, the notice said.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has sought to address growing public anger at the illegal or unethical behavior of party officials, especially those with flamboyant lifestyles, often seen as a sign they are corrupt.
Since taking office in March, Xi has called corruption a threat to the party's survival and vowed to go after powerful "tigers" as well as lowly "flies".
(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Nick Macfie)
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