General Principles of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China

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The General Principles of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China (Chinese: 中华人民共和国民法通则) is a law in the PRC promulgated in 1986 and came into force in 1987 January 1. It is intended to create a consistent framework for civil law interpretation in the People's Republic of China, and is heavily influenced by the German Civil Code. Unlike most civil law jurisdictions, the PRC does not have a comprehensive civil code, and attempts to create one have proven difficult and controversial.

It is the most important codification after the cultural revolution of China..It is significantly different from that of French and German's civil code.It consists of altogether 156 Articles and 9 chapters. Each chapter consists of following provisions:

  • Chapter 1: Consists the basic principles of civil activities like equality of parties in civil proceedings,voluntariness and honesty,protection of civil rights and lawful interests of legal persons,respect for social justice,public interest,state economic policies,etc.The general rules of the 1st chapter stipulate that the civil law of china regulates property and personal relationship among the citizens and legal persons;
  • Chapter 2: Deals with legal capacity of natural person;
  • Chapter 3: Deals with legal persons;
  • Chapter 4: Deals with legal persons legal acts and power of attorney;
  • Chapter 5: Deals with legal persons state,collective and individual ownership;
  • Chapter 6: Deals with legal persons remedies for breach of contract and torts;
  • Chapter 7: Deals with legal persons general provisions like limitations;
  • Chapter 8: Deals with legal persons provisions for private international law;
  • Chapter 9: Deals with legal persons supplementary and closing provisions;


It is the first systematic legislation after the foundation of PRC.