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HomeIssues2012/1Special feature: China's WTO DecadeThe Compromised “Rule of Law by I...

Special feature: China's WTO Decade

The Compromised “Rule of Law by Internationalisation”

Leïla Choukroune
p. 9-14


Upon accession to the WTO, China committed to a series of specific obligations often referred to as “WTO+,” aimed at the progressive transformation of the Chinese legal landscape. While one cannot ignore a number of very significant achievements as well as a true political responsiveness to other WTO members’ concerns, China has not been willing to grasp the WTO opportunity for domestic legal reforms as much as observers, and some Chinese leaders, had hoped for. This incomplete normative revolution now creates tensions between WTO members, as evidenced by an increasing number of disputes shedding a direct light on the lack of transparency in the Chinese legal system. Ten years later, this piece reflects upon predictions about Chinese “rule of law by internationalisation,” while putting China’s legal reform into a broader political perspective.

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Bibliographical reference

Leïla Choukroune, « The Compromised “Rule of Law by Internationalisation” », China Perspectives, 2012/1 | 2012, 9-14.

Electronic reference

Leïla Choukroune, « The Compromised “Rule of Law by Internationalisation” », China Perspectives [Online], 2012/1 | 2012, Online since 30 March 2012, connection on 19 June 2021. URL : ; DOI :

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About the author

Leïla Choukroune

Doctorate in International Law from Paris Sorbonne Law School, Lawyer Paris Bar. She teaches international economic law at Maastricht University. She is Deputy Director of the Institute for Globalization and Economic Regulation (IGIR). Her research deals with the interactions between trade, investment and human rights with a special interest for the emerging world and Asia, China and India in particular, where she has lived and visits very frequently.

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