In her spare time, she enjoys photography, reading, and drinking overpriced coffees. Prior to joining The Legalshe worked as a journalist for a national personal finance website, focusing on mortgages, tax and pensions. Rebecca enjoys travelling, reading fiction, writing poetry and attending London literary festivals.
The current legal order in China is completely new from an ideological point of view, coming into existence after the Kuomingtang KMT government was abolished, and its leader defeated by the Communist Party in However, certain traditional influences, for instance, the ethical nature of the law reflecting the teachings of Confucianism, a school of thought dating back over two thousand years ago in Chinese history, remain distinct features of the law of the PRC.
The present legal framework, which was officially established inwas based on Marxism and Leninism. Before the Criminal Code was enacted inthe Constitution Law passed in was the only statute for 25 years! Massive legislation from the late s, which emulated the legislative experiences and techniques of Western countries, was beyond the structure of the Soviet model.
Consequently, the law had no place for such ideals as justice and equi ty, which are often claimed by Western society. As shown by its legal structure and form, the laws of the PRC share the same characteristics of the civil law system rather than those of common law.
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As concluded by Rene David, "Chinese law. The two are responsible for adding many unconventional and unprecedented traits to the Chinese socialist system. This was done for the purpose of maintaining state dominion over the special economic positions of these two regions.
Furthermore, it is stated clearly in the Basic Laws of both regions that the existing capitalist system and the people's current way of life shall remain unchanged for the next 50 years. Laws previously in force are also kept and maintained. Hence, the legal systems in both regions have combined the characteristics of both civil and common laws, creating a political scheme that is a mixture of both capitalism and socialism.
The legislation of the PRC reflects a structural similarity to countries of the Romano-Germanic family.
Moreover, Chinese jurists value legal doctrines and hold written law in high esteem; concrete judicial decisions are not officially considered a source of law. According to the Law of the People's Republic of China on Legislationthe NPC and its Standing Committee pass the national statutes, including the Constitution Lawcriminal substantial and procedural laws, civil principles and procedural laws.
In China, legal interpretations are commonly grouped into three categories: The State Council is empowered to enact administrative regulations in accordance with national laws.
Government agencies, ministries and commissions, which are under the State Council, are vested with the power to issue orders, measures, and directives in conformity with the State Council's regulations.
Local congressional and government bodies enact local laws and administrative measures. However, they cannot be in conflict with national statutes.
The judgments of the Supreme People's Court are, however, factually respected by the lower courts and used as guidelines when the provision of law is in obscurity. However, Portuguese laws that were formerly applied to Macao, but not in conflict with the Macao Basic Law, still remain in force.
Also, the laws enacted by the Macao SAR legislature and other administrative regulations passed by the government are still law in Macao. Some components of the legal information system, such as finding tools, updating services, and citation standards, took years before they were forged into the Western systems.
Without a comprehensive legal information system, which is the foundation of legal study and practice, legal research cannot be conducted accurately and efficiently. In China, the major predicaments or challenges we face include the scarcity of legal information, the high difficulty of information access, the quality of legal publishing which is below standardthe lack of a uniform system of subject classification, underdeveloped library facilities and services, and the shortage of information specialists.
Problems in accumulating and accessing legal information Due to the absence of law for nearly three decades in China after the establishment of the PRC inthe development and progress of legal scholarship had been bleak in the country.
Of the minimal amount of research publications available, most are directly copied from the works of the former Soviet Union or simply political propaganda. Attention to and study of legal information access were almost zero and legal information professionals were few. Law schools had no steady resources to establish a competent collection to support legal teaching and research.
Textbooks that were rife with political preaching ideals and Soviet doctrines were the main teaching materials, and often the only materials available for certain subjects.
As a result, law graduate students in the s found themselves trapped between dual difficulties-the scarcity of legal materials and the lack of fundamental communication means for their theses. Consequently, a huge portion of their time was spent physically traveling around the country to collect information and data and visiting other law schools to exchange ideas and insights with their colleagues in person.
At the end of the s, the renaissance of legal research resulted in the flourishing of the legal publishing industry. Unlike those major law schools in big cities which were supplied with more governmental and other fundssmall to medium-sized law schools in the hinterland and judicial institutions have been struggling with the lack of basic legal materials.
Instead, problems from legal publishing still impede the development of a strong system supporting legal research. The major problem is the utilitarian and pragmatist approach of the legal publishers, which are mostly owned by the state.
These publishers are the ones who determine the publishing scheme, and they pay little attention to adopt commonly accepted techniques such as providing an index, digest, and standardized or unified citation.
Moreover, law classification is primitive and not uniform, two factors that play important roles in restraining the development of a competent legal information system in China.
Instead of a well-balanced scholarly and practitioner-oriented publishing scheme for primary and secondary sources seen by West Publishing as the base of the information pyramid [xiii] [xiii]publishers are driven more or less by the idea of profit making.
The utilitarian values adopted by legal publishers have resulted in the repetitive publishing of practical materials, popular legal readings such as law or regulation compilationsand all sorts of legal handbooks. This pragmatic tendency has squandered precious resources, hindering the production of research tools that are really needed.
For example, the legal periodical index, which is the most fundamental finding tool in legal research, only came out inwhile the "Reprint of Newspaper and Journals" by the People's University has been continually published over the decades.Updated world stock indexes. Get an overview of major world indexes, current values and stock market data.
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