This article looks at the legal framework & regulation in the China eCommerce market and outlines the relevant requirements for trading in this territory.
The highest legal body in China is the National People’s Congress, a body tasked with approving the laws submitted by relevant designated departments of the Chinese administration. Local governments also set up various rules and regulations that apply to their individual localities. When establishing companies and running businesses within China, foreign enterprises must pay taxes according to Chinese tax laws.
A retailer should not assume that Hong Kong and China operate under similar legal systems; as a former British colony, Hong Kong has a more accommodating common law regime, whereas China operates a system based upon civil law.
The rise of ecommerce in the 1990s and its related demands cast light on the shortcomings of official regulation in this fast-growing sector and the Chinese authorities have since been undergoing a process of systematic legal reform. As a result, there has been great improvement and clarification in the law associated with online trading in China, though importantly the regulatory framework governing this sector is still far from comprehensive, remaining inconsistent and subject to regional interpretation. A prospective online retailer should also be aware that underdeveloped dispute resolution mechanisms in China make it difficult to deal with ecommerce disputes.
With ecommerce increasingly important to the Chinese economy, there is an increasing focus on related legislation.
We have compiled a series of tables in the full country guide containing some of the key legislation to consider before you begin trading in the Chinese market.
The table in the full country guide contains some key legislation to consider before you begin trading in China.
This article provides a legal framework overview of the China eCommerce market – we have produced a full country guide covering in-depth information on multiple aspects of trading into this territory including logistics, payments, legal framework and marketing.
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