Towards a Chinese Civil Code

Comparative and Historical Perspectives


Currently, China is drafting its new Civil Code. Against this background, the Chinese legal community has shown a growing interest in various legal and legislative ideas from around the world. Within this context, the present book aims at providing the necessary historical and comparative legal perspectives. It concentrates on substantive private law and civil procedure, both in China and in other jurisdictions. These perspectives are of considerable importance for the present codification work. Additionally, the book is dedicated to commemorating the centennial of the first Western-influenced and civil law-oriented Civil Code of China, the Da Qing Min Lü Cao An of 1911.

The following topics are addressed: property law, contract law, tort law and civil procedure. The book also contains contributions on codification experiences in Europe and on the concept of codification in general. The topics are discussed by leading Chinese and international scholars. Most of the Chinese contributors have taken part in preparing the Chinese Draft Civil Code.

The book is the outcome of a conference organized by the Centre for Chinese and Comparative Law (RCCL), School of Law, City University of Hong Kong, in October 2010.

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Lei Chen, LLD (2008), is Assistant Professor at the School of Law, City University of Hong Kong. He has published extensively on Chinese Private Law and Comparative Law, including his recently published "The Making of Chinese Condominium Law" (Intersentia, 2010).

C.H. (Remco) van Rhee, Ph.D. (1997), Maastricht University, Faculty of Law, is Professor of European Legal History and Comparative Civil Procedure. He has published extensively on European Legal History and Comparative Civil Procedure, and is general editor and main author of the best-selling European Traditions in Civil Procedure (Intersentia, 2005).
"The book has laid a solid foundation for future research on the topic and provided excellent comparative insight on codification."
-Peter CH Chan, City University of Hong Kong
List of Contributors
Introduction: Lei Chen and C.H. (Remco) van Rhee
The Systematization of the Chinese Civil Code: Liming Wang
From a Supplementary Legislator to a Legitimate Judicial Lawmaker - On the Role of the Supreme People’s Court in Developing the Law in Mainland China: Zhenbao Jin
Factors Ensuring the Success or Failure of Draft Codifications. Some European Experiences: Dirk Heirbaut
Property Law
100 Years of Chinese Property Law: Looking Back and Thinking Forward: Lei Chen
Restructuring Modern Property Law on a Theoretical Basis: Weiguo Wang
Can European property law be codified? Towards the development of property notions: Sjef van Erp
A Comparative Assessment of the Provisions of the New Chinese Property Code on Condominiums: Cornelius G. van der Merwe
Conceptualizing the Chinese Trust: Some Thoughts from Europe: Kenneth G.C. Reid
Contract Law
A Snapshot of Chinese Contract Law from an Historical and Comparative Perspective: Shiyuan Han
Codification in Europe and China: What Makes Contract Law Special?: Jan M. Smits
Service Contracts in Chinese Contract Law: An Approach according to the European Draft Common Frame of Reference: Knut Benjamin Pisler
Third Party Rights in Contract: A Case Study on Codifying and not Codifying: Hector L. Macqueen
Tort law
The Bases of Liability in Chinese Tort Liability Law—Historical and Comparative Perspectives: Yan Zhu
A Common Law-like Civil Law and a Public Face for Private Law: China’s Tort Law in Comparative Perspective: Jacques deLisle
Uncertain Causes: The Chinese Tort Liability Law in Comparative Perspective: Ken Oliphant
Chinese Medical Negligence Law: How to Distinguish and Accommodate Common Law Principles?: Xiju Zhao
The Great Spill in the Gulf … and a Sea of Pure Economic Loss: Reflections on the Boundaries of Civil Liability: Vernon V. Palmer
Civil procedure
The Position of Judges in Civil Litigation in Transitional China - Judicial Mediation and Case Management:
Yulin Fu and Zhixun Cao
The Influence of the 1895 Austrian ZPO in the Netherlands: C.H. (Remco) van Rhee
Judicial Case Management in France—Tradition into Modernity: About some Aspects of Contemporary Tendencies in French Civil Procedure: Loïc Cadiet
All interested in the codification of Chinese private law.