Conflict of Laws in the People’s Republic of China

Conflict of Laws in the People’s Republic of China

Elgar Asian Commercial Law and Practice series

Zheng Sophia Tang, Yongping Xiao and Zhengxin Huo

The area of conflict of laws in China has undergone fundamental development in the past three decades and the most recent changes in the 2010s, regarding both jurisdiction and choice of law rules, mark the establishment of modern Chinese conflicts system. Jointly written by three professors from both China and the UK, this book provides the most up-to-date and comprehensive analysis of Chinese conflict of laws in civil and commercial matters. It takes into account the latest developments in legislation and judicial interpretation, case law and judicial practice, and historical, political and economic background, especially recognizing the scholarly contribution made by Chinese scholars to this field.


Zheng Sophia Tang, Yongping Xiao and Zhengxin Huo

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, law - academic, asian law, private international law


The Chinese General Principles of Civil Law provide that obligations between parties include not only contract and tort, but also unjust enrichment and negotiorum gestio. A collective terminology for these other obligations is not easily applicable. The common law terminology ‘restitution’ could perhaps be used, but the definition of restitution is never very clear. More importantly, restitution is a method of remedy, instead of a course of action. This book, thus, does not provide a specific, new terminology for these non-contractual, non-delictual obligations. Compared to contract and tort, unjust enrichment and negotiorum gestio generate greater difficulties in private international law. First, they both have a relatively shorter history and the legal rules and theories applicable to them are, in many countries, immature. The uncertainty in substantive law inevitably causes difficulties in conflict of laws. Secondly, although these obligations are not contractual or delictual, they usually relate to contracts, formed or unformed, or wrongs. As a result, they may be called quasi-contract, or quasi-delict, obligations, and can be treated in a similar way to contract and tort in the conflict of laws. Inconsistent opinions exist as to whether, for the purpose of choice of law, non-contractual, non-delictual obligations should be classified as sui generis obligations, subject to different choice of law rules or if they can be simply included in the broad classification of contract or tort depending on the characteristic of each specific case.

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