Lawyers, whether working in business, regulation, policymaking, or advocacy, are increasingly likely to come into contact with issues related to China over the course of their careers. Recent tensions, for example involving Huawei Technologies, trade bans on key exports, and the fight against COVID-19 are straining the Canada-China bilateral relationship. This course serves as a foundation for such encounters and aims to expose students to more of what lawyering involves in such contexts. It is an introductory course that addresses how aspects of the Chinese legal system shape China-Canada relations and inform the contemporary practice of law in Canada.
In addition to being of interest to students who would like to learn more about China and Canada-China relations, the class is also relevant for students interested in international relations and the practice of law in the global context.
The course will begin with an overview of Canada-China legal relations and China’s contemporary legal system. It will then examine the political, economic and social environment within which the Chinese legal system operates. Topics covered will include recent diplomatic disputes and their implications for bilateral relations; foreign investor ownership of residential real estate in Canada; cooperation on global issues in areas such as climate change, health and safety (including COVID-19), Arctic sovereignty and food security; gender equality, including sex work and human trafficking; trade and competition issues; key debates in criminal law, including extradition; and current tensions between Hong Kong and mainland China.
Course materials will include readings (all available for download through Moodle), documentaries, and guest speakers with experience working in the sphere of Canada-China relations (via zoom).
No prior knowledge of China or Chinese is required or expected for this course.
Please do not hesitate to reach out to the instructor (MBoittin@osgoode.yorku.ca) for any questions on the course.