China has issued new rules to boost the transparency of its Red Cross societies, requiring the charity organizations to regularly make public the use of donations.
Red Cross societies should apply to civil affairs departments at the same level for fundraising permission, according to a circular released by the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) and Red Cross Society of China (RCSC).
Online philanthropy by Red Cross societies should be launched through charity websites that are selected by the MCA, said the document.
Red Cross societies are required to submit annual reports on donations and their use to civil affairs departments and publish such information for public scrutiny, it added.
China's Red Cross societies have grappled with a crisis of trust after a string of embezzlement scandals over the past few years have put a dent in the sector's credibility.
The most famous case revolved around a young woman named Guo Meimei, who claimed to work for an organization under the RCSC and boasted of a lavish lifestyle on her microblog.
Although Guo was later found to have not been employed by the RCSC, the incident prompted worries of charity fund embezzlement and triggered calls for stricter scrutiny.