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CHAPTER 1 Introduction to Chinese maritime law

Maritime Law and Practice in China

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Introduction to Chinese maritime law

Introduction to Chinese maritime law

1.1 The legal system of the People’s Republic of China (the “PRC”) is similar to the civil law system. The main statutory law of the maritime law of the PRC includes the Maritime Law (the “CMC 1992”)1 promulgated in 1992, and the Special Maritime Procedure Law (the “SMPL 1999”) promulgated in 1999. In practice, the Supreme People’s Court (the “SPC”) has also promulgated judicial interpretations for the implementation of Chinese maritime law. The SPC’s judicial interpretations have played an important role in Chinese judicial practice. Still, the judgments of maritime cases in China are not sources of Chinese law. However, maritime judgments, especially some judgments selected by the SPC as the guiding cases, have become important references for adjudication in Chinese maritime judicial practice.

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