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Chief Justice Draws Legal System Blueprint

China seeks to establish a comprehensive legal system by 2010, Xiao Yang, president of the Supreme People's Court, said yesterday.

"The system will feature seven major categories," he said when delivering a speech at the ongoing 22nd Congress on the Law of the World in Shanghai.

The first involves the Constitution and relevant laws, which are the foundation for the protection of civil rights and regulating state powers. After several amendments in the past, China's Constitution has integrated more modern rule-of-law practices, Xiao said.

The second are civil and commercial laws, which are considered the legal form of a market economy. He said China's top legislature is accelerating the enactment of a unified Civil Code.

The third is administrative laws, an important basis for administration according to the rule of law. "China is currently in the process of drafting a batch of administrative laws, including one for administrative enforcement," said Xiao, praising China's transformation from "administration according to policies" to "administration according to laws."

The fourth is economic laws, which will serve to maintain and guarantee the order of the market economy through appropriate government intervention.

According to Xiao, China is actively drafting anti-monopoly, anti-dumping and subsidy laws so as to further improve the legal system of state control of market operations.

The fifth is social laws, according to Xiao, which are designed to protect the interests of laborers and disadvantaged groups such as the unemployed and the disabled.

The sixth is criminal laws.

The last ones, said Xiao, are litigation and non-litigation procedure laws, which are of great significance in maintaining social fairness and justice.

"To date, China's criminal, civil and administrative procedure laws combine to form a relatively comprehensive system," said Xiao. He said that after more than 20 years of development, China's legal system framework has begun to take shape.

World Law Conference Program

(Xinhua News Agency September 9, 2005)

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