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Eight innovation in China’s draft general provisions of civil law
March 10,2017   By:People's Daily Online
March 10, 2017 -- The 5th session of the 12th National People’s Congress (NPC) of China deliberated on the draft general provisions of civil law on Wednesday afternoon.
From the beginning, the draft has drawn strong response from the society. Its release will better improve the basic rules of the socialist market economy and provide the legal base for Chinese people’s civil rights and civil case ruling.
 
Su Zelin, Deputy Director of Law Committee of NPC Standing Committee, who participated the entire deliberation process, introduced the eight innovations in the general provisions to People’s Daily.
 
No.1: More emphasis on public order and good moral
 
The current General Principles of Civil Law, Contract Law and Property Law all stipulate that civil subjects, when conducting civil activities, shall respect social ethnics and avoid damaging public interests and economic order. However, none of them have been mandatorily enforced. The draft specifically listed “not violating public order and good moral” as abindingarticle of the civil law.
 
No.2: Requirement of energy conservation and environment protection
 
The general provisions included energy conservation and environment protection as basic requirements for civil subjects. Waste of resource and harming the eco-environment shall be castigated to curb the crude development style, which provides institutional guarantee for the scientific and sustainable development.
 
No. 3: Protection of embryo rights
 
The General Principles do not define embryos as nature persons in the legal sense, thus stripping their civil rights. The draft added clauses to protect the rights of embryos including inheritance and accepting grant. This is an extension of laws on protection of children’s rights, and will build a better environment for children’s healthy development.
 
No.4: Special protection for minors’ civil rights
 
Given the physical, psychological and mental features of minors, the general provisions stipulated special protection for minors’ rights. For instance, the statute of limitations of requests for legal representatives for person with none or limited capacity for civil conduct shall be counted from the day of termination of said legal representatives. Also, the statute of limitations for compensation of sexual abuse on minors shall be counted from the day the victim turns 18 years old.