Golf is no longer a crime, decrees China’s Communist party | World news | The Guardian
Teeing off is not a crime, the Communist party of China has decreed, lifting millions of fairway fanatics out of the rough.
Banned by Mao Zedong – who despised the “sport for millionaires” – golf enjoyed a renaissance during the 80s and 90s only to be outlawed for the party’s 85 million members in 2015 as a result of president Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption drive.
Articles in the party-controlled media have painted China’s golf courses as cauldrons of profiteering where the palms of rotten officials are greased by favour-seeking business people.
“The golf course is gradually changing into a muddy field where they trade money for power,” one state-run newspaper complained in 2015.
Party leaders appeared to step back from their condemnation of the game this week.
“Since it is only a sport, there is no right or wrong about playing golf,” an article in the Discipline Inspection and Supervision News, the official newspaper of China’s anti-corruption agency, declared.