China's ruling Communist Party will step up efforts to root out corruption within its ranks, forcing grass-roots officials to report cases of graft to the party's disciplinary authorities, according to reform measures announced on Friday.
President Xi Jinping has said that endemic corruption threatens the party's very survival and has vowed to go after high-flying "tigers" as well as lowly "flies" - though so far most anti-corruption targets have been low-ranking.
Party officials pervade all levels of official and business life but they are not required to escalate corruption cases to the party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and can seek to deal with them at the grass-roots level.
However the new measures, part of a package of social and economic reforms, seek to introduce more central party oversight of corruption and will require Communist cadres to report cases to disciplinary officials and other senior party officials.
The party also plans to set up an internal database to record the personal income and other financial information of party officials in order to identify ill-gotten gains.
Corruption by government officials is a source of widespread public discontent. Critics have said that until high-ranking officials are forced to disclose their wealth, it will be impossible to truly weed out graft.
"The key reform that has not yet happened is public disclosure of assets," said Jin Zhong, publisher of Hong Kong-based Open Magazine. "That issue is already ripe for change."