Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

China and Her Legal System

Posted by w_thames_the_d on January 29, 2011

China’s Long March toward Rule of Law (Randall Peerenboom)

“Given the heavy reliance on Party policies rather than law during the Mao period, China lacked even the most basic laws such as a comprehensive criminal code, civil law, or contract law. The response has been a legislative onslaught the pace and breadth of which has been nothing short of stunning. Between 1976 and 1998, the National People’s Congress (NPC) and its Standing Committee (NPCSC) passed more than 337 laws and local people’s congresses and governments issued more than 6,000 regulations. In contrast, only 134 laws were passed between 1949 and 1978, with only one law passed during the Cultural Revolution from 1967 to 1976. Moreover, of the 134 laws passed between 1949 and 1978, 111 were subsequently declared invalid and many of the remaining ones were amended during the post-1978 reform era.”

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