【英语中国】中国公职人员迎来“清淡”春节 China faces ban on new ?year perks

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所属分类:双语中国

2014-1-21 08:42

小艾摘要: China’s public servants are in no mood to be festive this lunar new year. They dare not take bribes, but that is just the half of it.Plenty of the more innocent perks of the season have also been qua ...
China faces ban on new ?year perks
China’s public servants are in no mood to be festive this lunar new year. They dare not take bribes, but that is just the half of it.

Plenty of the more innocent perks of the season have also been quashed: no more taxpayer-funded office feasts or galas; no more -lavish new year raffles.

Even the most insignificant treats – from fruit baskets to sunflower seeds, calendars to cooking oil – have been curbed in the name of the new leaner, cleaner, more abstemious China.

Lunar new year has been the high point of work life in China for decades. But last year many government departments and state-owned enterprises cancelled year-end office parties after a flurry of edicts from Beijing. This year, the January 31 celebrations are taking frugality further.

“We already moved our nianhui (new year office party) from a five-star hotel ballroom to our canteen, where the food is terrible. But what I hate the most is, they cancelled the prize-giving,” says a disgruntled employee of state-owned China Mobile in Guangzhou, who would not give their name. “They kept the traditional lottery as a kind of game, but whoever wins it gets no gift!”

Some also complain of the cancellation of traditional year-end subsidies, sometimes in the form of grocery gift cards used to defray the expenses of celebrating the spring festival at home.

“I understand that the higher levels of government worry that, once they loosen their grip, people under them will find a loophole. But to cancel such nianhui hurts department cohesiveness,” says a junior civil servant in Shanghai.

But little things irk: “We planned to have a tea party in our own canteen with sunflower seeds, candies, singing and games, but our superiors wouldn’t approve it,” says one staff member at a state oil company.

An employee in a state-owned financial services company says a ban on the printing of calendars bothers him most. Another told the Beijing News his state-owned company replaced new year gifts such as iPads with toothpaste.

But some public servants say there is a silver lining.

The employee whose planned canteen party was not authorised says: “I was half wishing that they would not approve it, because it’s not really fun. I actually felt relieved.” Some say they are also relieved to avoid the heavy drinking at government banquets.

The ministries of public security, civil affairs and culture must live without their own new year galas screened on China Central Television this year, according to Xinhua. Even spending public funds on firework displays, the most traditional new year activity, has been banned.

Additional reporting by Zhang Yan in Shanghai and Gu Yu and Jamil Anderlini in Beijing

中国的公职人员在今年春节前夕的心情可不怎么样。他们不敢收受贿赂,但这还只是心情不好的一部分原因。

很多比较无伤大雅的节日福利也被撤销:不再有由纳税人买单的办公室盛宴或节日晚会,也不再有奢华的新年抽奖。

即便是最微不足道的待遇——从果篮到瓜子,从挂历到食用油——也在更精简、更清洁、更节制的新名义下受到遏制。

几十年来,春节一直是中国人职场生活中比较令人兴奋的时刻。但去年许多政府部门和国有企业在接到高层的一连串指示后,取消了年底的办公室聚会。今年,在1月31日的农历新年到来前夕,各单位的节俭程度进一步提高。

“我们已经把年会(新年办公室聚会)的地点从一家五星级酒店的宴会厅改到了我们的食堂,食堂的东西很难吃。但最讨厌的是,他们取消了发奖。”国有的中国移动(China Mobile)在广州的一名不满的员工(此人要求匿名)表示,“他们保留了传统的抽奖作为一种游戏,但中奖者将得不到任何礼物!”

还有人抱怨传统的年终补贴被取消,这种补贴有时以超市购物卡形式发放,用于贴补家里过年的花销。

“据我所知,政府高层担心,一旦他们放松规定,下面的人就会找到漏洞。但是撤销这种年会不利于部门凝聚力,”上海一名初级公务员表示。

令人心烦的是,“小意思”也往往遭到否决:“我们计划在自己的食堂开个茶话会,提供瓜子、糖果,唱唱歌、做做游戏,可我们的上级竟然不批准,”某国有石油公司的一名职员表示。

某国有金融服务公司的一名雇员表示,禁止印刷挂历的规定最让他心烦。另一名人士告诉《新京报》,他所在的国企将新年礼物从往年的iPad降格为牙膏。

但是,一些公职人员表示,他们看到了一些积极的方面。

食堂茶话会计划未获批准的那名职员表示:“我本来就暗地里希望他们不会批准,因为这真的没什么意思。我其实松了一口气。”有些人说,不用在政府宴会上豪饮,也让他们松了一口气。

据新华社报道,公安、民政、文化等部今年不得举办在中国中央电视台播放的春节晚会。放烟花爆竹是过年时最传统的活动,但今年就连用公款购买烟花爆竹也被禁止。

张嫣(Zhang Yan)上海、谷禹(Gu Yu)和吉密欧(Jamil Anderlini)北京补充报道

译者/和风

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