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Foreign Law
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中华人民共和国合同法(英文版)

发布日期:2018-08-20

Supplementary Provisions

General Provisions

Chapter I Common Provisions

Article 1 This Law is enacted for the purpose of protecting the legitimate rights and interests of the parties to contracts, maintaining the socio-economic order and promoting the socialist modernization.

Article 2 For the purpose of this Law, a contract means an agreement on the establishment, alteration or termination of a civil right-obligation relationship between natural persons, legal persons or other organizations as subjects with equal status.

Agreements on establishing such personal relationships as marriage, adoption and guardianship shall be governed by the provisions of other laws.

Article 3 The parties to the contract have equal legal status, and neither party may impose its will on the other.

Article 4 The parties shall, pursuant to law, have the right to enter into a contract on their own free will, and no unit or person may unlawfully interfere.

Article 5 The parties shall observe the principle of equity in defining each other's rights and obligations.

Article 6 The parties shall observe the principle of good faith in exercising their rights and fulfilling their obligations.

Article 7 The parties shall, in making and fulfilling the contract, abide by laws and administrative regulations and respect social ethics, and may not disrupt the socio-economic order nor impair social and public interests.

Article 8 A legally executed contract has legal binding force on the parties. The parties shall fulfill their obligations as contracted, and may not arbitrarily modify or terminate the contract.

A legally executed contract is protected by law.

Chapter II Making of the Contract

Article 9 The parties shall, when making a contract, have corresponding capacity for civil rights and civil conduct.

A party may, in accordance with the law, entrust an agent to make a contract.

Article 10 The parties may, when making a contract, use written form, verbal form or any other form.

The written form shall be adopted if laws or administrative regulations so require. The written form shall be adopted if the parties so agree.

Article 11 "Written form" as used herein means any form which renders the information contained in a contract capable of being reproduced in tangible form such as a written agreement, a letter, or electronic text (including telegram, telex, facsimile, electronic data interchange and e-mail).

Article 12 The content of a contract is determined by the parties and generally includes the following clauses:

(1) designations or names and addresses of the parties;

(2) the targeted matter;

(3) quantity;

(4) quality;

(5) price or remuneration;

(6) time, place and mode of fulfillment;

(7) liability for breach of contract; and

(8) dispute settlement.

The parties may make contracts with reference to various model contract forms.

Article 13 The parties shall, in making a contract, take the form of offer and acceptance.

Article 14 An "offer" is an intent indication showing the desire to enter into a contract with others, and the intent indication shall conform to the following provisions:

(1) the content indicated shall be concrete and definite;

(2) the offeror shall, as is indicated, be bound by the intent indication upon its acceptance by an offeree.

Article 15 An invitation for offer is an intent indication showing the desire to receive offers from others. Mailed or delivered price catalogs, auction announcements, invitations for bid, capital-raising prospectus and commercial advertisements are such invitations for offer.

A commercial advertisement shall, if its content conforms to the provisions regarding offers, be deemed an offer.

Article 16 An offer becomes effective when it reaches the offeree.

If a contract is made in the form of text in electronic data and the receiver has designated a special receiving system to receive such data text, the time at which the text in electronic data enters the designated special system shall be the time of arrival; if no special receiving system is designated, the time at which the text in electronic data first enters any of the receiver's systems shall be the time of arrival.

Article 17 An offer may be withdrawn. The withdrawal notice of an offer shall reach the offeree before or at the same time as the arrival of the offer at the offeree.

Article 18 An offer may be revoked. The revocation notice of an offer shall reach the offeree before the dispatch of an acceptance notice by the offeree.

Article 19 An offer may not be revoked under any of the following conditions:

(1) the offeror has specified a time limit for the acceptance, or has explicitly indicated in any other manner the irrevocability of the offer;

(2) there are grounds for the offeree to maintain the irrevocability of the offer and the offeree has made preparations for the fulfillment of the contract.

Article 20 An offer loses its effect under any of the following conditions:

(1) a rejection notice of the offer has reached the offeror;

(2) the offeror has revoked the offer pursuant to law;

(3) when the fixed time limit for acceptance expires, the offeree undertakes no acceptance; or

(4) the offeree makes a substantial change of the content of the offer.

Article 21 An acceptance is an assent indication of the offeree to an offer.

Article 22 An acceptance shall be made in form of a notice, unless, in light of trade practices or as indicated by the offer, the offeree may indicate the assent by performing an act.

Article 23 An acceptance shall reach the offeror within the time limit fixed by the offer.

If no time limit is fixed by the offer, the acceptance shall reach the offeror in accordance with the following provisions:

(1) if an offer is made orally, acceptance shall be made promptly unless the parties stipulate otherwise; and

(2) if an offer is not made orally, the acceptance shall reach the offeror within a reasonable period of time.

Article 24 If an offer is made through a letter or a telegram, the time limit for acceptance commences on the date shown on the letter or on the date the telegram is handed in for dispatch or, if no such date is shown on the letter, from the date shown by the postmark of the letter. If an offer is made by means of instantaneous communications such as telephone or facsimile, the time limit for acceptance commences at the moment that the offer reaches the offeree.

Article 25 A contract is executed at the time when the acceptance becomes effective.

Article 26 The acceptance becomes effective when the acceptance notice reaches the offeror. If an acceptance needs no notice, it becomes effective when an act of acceptance is performed in light of trade practices or as indicated by the offer.

Where a contract is made in the form of text in electronic data, the provisions of Paragraph 2, Article 16 of this Law shall be applicable to the time of arrival of the acceptance.

Article 27 An acceptance may be withdrawn. The withdrawal notice of the acceptance shall reach the offeror before or at the same time as the acceptance notice reaches the offeror.

Article 28 If the offeree makes an acceptance beyond the time limit for acceptance, it shall constitute a new offer unless the offeror notifies the offeree in time that the acceptance is effective.

Article 29 If an offeree makes within the time limit for acceptance an acceptance that could reach the offeror in time under normal conditions but happens to reach the offeror beyond the limit due to other reasons, the acceptance shall be effective notwithstanding unless the offeror notifies the offeree in time that the acceptance is denied due to its delayed arrival.

Article 30 The content of an acceptance shall be consistent with the content of the offer. If the offeree proposes any substantial change to the content of the offer, it shall constitute a new offer. Changes related to the targeted matter, quantity, quality, price or remuneration, duration of fulfillment, place and mode of fulfillment, liability for breach of contract and method of dispute settlement in a contract are substantial changes to the content of an offer.

Article 31 If an acceptance makes non-substantial changes to the content of the offer, the acceptance shall be effective notwithstanding and the content of the contract shall thus be based on the content of the acceptance, unless the offeror indicates in time its objection thereto, or as indicated in the offer, the acceptance may not make any change to the content of the offer.

Article 32 If the parties enter into a contract in the form of a contract instrument, the contract is executed at the time when both parties put their signatures or affix their seals thereto.

Article 33 If the parties enter into a contract in the form of letter or text in electronic data or any other forms, a confirmation instrument may be required prior to the execution of the contract. The contract is executed at the time when the confirmation instrument is signed.

Article 34 The place where the acceptance becomes effective shall be the place where the contract is executed.

Where a contract is made in the form of text in electronic data, the receiver's major place of business is the place of execution of the contract; in the absence of a major place of business, the receiver's habitual residence is the place of execution of the contract. Where the parties stipulate otherwise, such stipulations shall govern.

Article 35 If the parties adopt the form of a contract instrument to make a contract, the place where both parties sign or stamp the contract is the place of execution of the contract.

Article 36 Where the parties fail to make a contract in written form as provided for by laws or administrative regulations or as agreed by the parties, but a party has already performed the major obligations and the other party has accepted the performance, the contract shall be considered as executed.

Article 37 If, in making a contract in the form of a contract instrument, a party has already performed the major obligations pending the signature or seal and the other party has accepted the performance, the contract shall be considered as executed.

Article 38 If the State gives, according to the needs, mandatory assignments or State purchase orders, the legal persons and other organizations concerned shall conclude contracts in accordance with the rights and obligations provided for by the relevant laws and administrative regulations.

Article 39 If standard clauses are used in making a contract, the party that provides the standard clauses shall determine the rights and obligations between the parties in accordance with the principle of fairness, and shall call in a reasonable manner the other party's attention to the exemptible and restrictive clauses regarding its liability, and give explanations of such clauses at the request of the other party.

"Standard clauses" means the clauses that are formulated in anticipation by a party for the purpose of repeated usage and that are not a result of consultation with the other party in the making of the contract.

Article 40 Standard clauses shall become invalid if they fall under any of the circumstances set forth in Articles 52 and 53 of this Law or if the party that provides the standard clauses exempts itself from the liability, imposes heavier liability on the other party, or precludes the other party from its main rights.

Article 41 If a dispute arises over the understanding of a standard clause, the clause shall be interpreted in accordance with its common understanding. If a standard clause has more than one interpretation, the clause shall be interpreted in a manner unfavorable to the party providing the clause. If a standard clause is inconsistent with the non-standard clause, the non-standard clause shall be adopted.

Article 42 In the making of a contract, the party that falls under any of the following circumstances, causing thus loss to the other party, shall hold the liability for the loss.

(1) engaging in consultation with malicious intention in name of making a contract;

(2) concealing intentionally key facts related to the making of the contract or providing false information; or

(3) taking any other act contrary to the principle of good faith.

Article 43 Neither party may disclose or inappropriately exploit business secrets obtained in the making of a contract no matter the contract is executed or not. The party that discloses or inappropriately exploits the said business secrets causing thus loss to the other party shall hold the liability for the loss.

Chapter III Validity of the Contract

Article 44 A contract legally executed shall become effective upon execution.

Where a contract may become effective only after the completion of approval and registration procedure according to the provisions of laws and administrative regulations, such provisions shall govern.

Article 45 The parties may agree to attach conditions on the validity of the contract. A contract with collateral conditions on its entry into effect shall become effective upon the fulfillment of the conditions. A contract with collateral conditions on its dissolution shall lose its validity upon the fulfillment of the conditions.

Where either party, for the sake of its own interests, unjustifiably prevents the fulfillment of the aforesaid conditions, the conditions shall be deemed as fulfilled; where either party unjustifiably hastens the fulfillment of the conditions, the conditions shall be deemed as not fulfilled.

Article 46 The parties may agree to attach a time limit for the entry into effect of a contract. A contract with an attached time limit for its entry into effect shall become effective upon expiry of the time limit. A contract attached with a time limit for its termination shall lose its effect upon expiry of the time limit.

Article 47 A contract entered into by a person with limited civil capacity may become valid only after ratification by his legal agent. However, a contract of such kind which is purely profit-making or the making of which is compatible to the age, intelligence and mental health of the person concerned needs no ratification by his legal agent.

The counterpart may urge the legal agent to give ratification within one month. Where the legal agent does not respond, the non-response shall be deemed a refusal of ratification. Pending the ratification, the bona fide counterpart has the right to rescind. The rescission shall be made by a notice.

Article 48 A contract that is entered into by an actor without the right of agency, in excess of the right of agency or beyond the expiration of the right of agency, in the name of a principal and without ratification by the principal, shall have no binding force on the principal, and the actor shall bear the responsibility therefor.

The counterpart may urge the principal to give ratification of the contract within one month. Where the principal does not respond, the non-response shall be deemed a refusal of ratification. Pending the ratification, the bona fide counterpart has the right to rescind. The rescission shall be made by a notice.

Article 49 Where an actor enters, without the right of agency, in excess of the right of agency or beyond the expiration of the right of agency, into a contract in the name of a principal, and where the counterpart has grounds to believe that the actor has the right of agency, the act of agency shall be deemed as effective.

Article 50 Where a legal person, or the legal representative or the person in charge of an organization exceeds the limits of power in making a contract, the act of representation shall be effective unless the counterpart is aware or ought to be aware of the excess of the limit of power.

Article 51 Where a person without the right of disposal disposes of another's property, upon ratification by the obligee or if the person without the right of disposal obtains the right of disposal after making the contract, the contract shall be effective.

Article 52 A contract is invalid under any of the following circumstances:

(1) either party enters into the contract by means of fraud or coercion and impairs the State's interests;

(2) there is malicious conspiracy causing damage to the interests of the State, of the collective or of a third party;

(3) there is an attempt to conceal illegal goals under the disguise of legitimate forms;

(4) harm is done to social and public interests; or

(5) mandatory provisions of laws and administrative regulations are violated.

Article 53 The following clauses on liability exemption in a contract shall be invalid:

(1) those causing physical injury to the other party; or

(2) those causing losses to property to the other party by intention or due to gross negligence.

Article 54 Either party has the right to request a people's court or an arbitration institution to alter or rescind any of the following contracts:

(1) any contract which is made under substantial misunderstanding; or

(2) any contract the making of which lacks fairness.

Where a party makes the other party enter into a contract against its true will by means of deceit, coercion or taking advantage of its difficulties, the injured party has the right to request a people's court or an arbitration institution to alter or rescind the contract.

Where the request of the party is an alteration to the contract, the people's court or arbitration institution shall not rescind it.

Article 55 The right to rescind shall vanish where:

(1) the party with the right to rescind has not exercised it within a year from the date on which it was aware or ought to be aware of the matter for the rescission; or

(2) the party with the right to rescind waivers its right by express indication or by its own act after it was aware of the matter for the rescission.

Article 56 An invalid or rescinded contract does not have legal binding force from the outset. If a part of a contract becomes invalid without affecting the validity of the other parts, the other parts remain valid.

Article 57 If a contract becomes invalid, or is rescinded or terminated, the validity of its independently existing clauses pertaining to the settlement of disputes shall not be affected.

Article 58 After a contract becomes invalid or is rescinded, any property obtained under the contract shall be returned. If it is impossible or unnecessary to return the property, compensation shall be made at an estimated price. The party at fault shall compensate the other party for the loss caused by the fault. If both parties have faults, they shall bear their respective responsibilities.

Article 59 If the parties impair by malicious conspiracy the interests of the State, of the collective or of a third party, the property they have thus obtained shall be returned to the State, the collective or the third party.

Chapter IV Fulfillment of the Contract

Article 60 The parties shall fulfill fully their respective obligations as contracted.

The parties shall observe the principle of good faith and fulfill the obligations of notification, assistance and confidentiality in accordance with the nature and aims of the contract and trade practices.

Article 61 For a contract that has become valid, where the parties have not stipulated the contents regarding quality, price or remuneration or the place of performance, or have stipulated them unclearly, the parties may supplement them by agreement; if they are unable to reach a supplementary agreement, the problem shall be determined in accordance with the related clauses of the contract or with trade practices.

Article 62 Where the parties have unclearly stipulated related contents in a contract and fails to determine them in accordance with the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the following provisions shall apply:

(1) in case of unclear quality requirements, the contract shall be performed in accordance with State standards or trade standards, or in the absence of such standards, in accordance with common standards or special standards conforming to the aim of the contract;

(2) in case of unclear price or remuneration stipulation, the contract shall be performed in accordance with the market price in the place of contract performance at the time of the making of the contract, or according to the government-set price or government-guided price if it is so required by law;

(3) in case of unclear stipulation of place of performance, where the payment is in cash, the contract shall be performed in the place of the cash recipient; where the payment is in real estate, the contract shall be performed in the place where the real estate is located; where other targeted matters are involved, the contract shall be performed in the place of the party fulfilling the obligations;

(4) in case of unclear time limit for the performance, the debtor may fulfill its obligations at any time, and the creditor may demand the fulfillment at any time, while giving the debtor necessary time to make preparations;

(5) in case of unclear mode of performance, the contract shall be performed in a manner conducive to the realization of the aim of the contract; and

(6) in case of unclear charge for the performance, the charge shall be borne by the party fulfilling the obligations.

Article 63 For a contract with the government-set price or government-guided price as the fulfilling price, where the government price is adjusted within the delivery period of the contract, the price at the time of delivery shall be the fulfilling price. Where an overdue delivery occurs and the price goes up at the delivery, the original price shall be the fulfilling price; if the price drops at the delivery, the new price shall be the fulfilling price. Where an overdue delivery-taking or overdue payment occurs, the new price shall be the fulfilling price if the price goes up; and the original price shall be the fulfilling price if the price goes down.

Article 64 Where the parties agree that the debtor shall discharge the debts to a third party and where the debtor fails to do so or fails to meet its liability as contracted, the debtor shall bear the liability for breach of contract to the creditor.

Article 65 Where the parties agree that a third party shall discharge the debts to the creditor and where the third party fails to do so or fails to meet its liability as contracted, the debtor shall bear the liability for breach of contract to the creditor.

Article 66 Where the parties are in debt to each other and there is no time order for discharging the debts, they shall meet their respective liabilities simultaneously. Either party has the right to reject the other party's demand for the discharge before the latter meets its own liabilities. Either party has the right to reject the other party's demand for the discharge if the latter fails to meet its liabilities as contracted.

Article 67 Where the parties are in debt to each other and there is a time order for them to discharge the debts, the party which is the next to discharge the debts has the right to reject the discharge demanded by the party which is the first to meet its liabilities but fails to meet them. The party which is the next to discharge the debts has also the right to reject a corresponding discharge demanded by the party which is the first to meet its liabilities but fails to meet them as contracted.

Article 68 The party which ought to discharge its debts first may suspend the discharge if it has truthful evidence to prove that the other party falls under any of the following situations:

(1) business operations seriously deteriorating;

(2) diverting properties and withdrawing capital to evade debts;

(3) falling into business discredit; or

(4) other situations showing inability or possible inability to meet liabilities.

A party that suspends the discharge without truthful evidence shall bear the liability for breach of contract.

Article 69 Where a party suspends the discharge of its debts in accordance with the provisions of Article 68 of this Law, it shall promptly notify the other party of the suspension. The party shall resume the discharge when the other party provides a guarantee. The party that has suspended the discharge may dissolve the contract if the other party has failed to regain its capability of meeting its liabilities and to provide a guarantee within a reasonable period of time.

Article 70 If a creditor splits, merges or changes domicile without notifying the debtor and thus makes it difficult to discharge the debts, the debtor may suspend the discharge or deposit the targeted matter.

Article 71 The creditor may refuse an anticipated discharge of debts by the debtor, except that the anticipated discharge does not impair the creditor's interest.

Any additional expenses caused to the creditor by the debtor's anticipated discharge of debts shall be borne by the debtor.

Article 72 The creditor may refuse a discharge of debts in part by the debtor, except that the partial discharge does not impair the creditor's interest.

Any additional expenses caused to the creditor by the debtor's discharge of debts in part shall be borne by the debtor.

Article 73 If a debtor is indolent in exercising its matured creditor's rights and thus causes losses to the creditor, the creditor may apply to a people's court to subrogate the debtor's creditor's rights and exercise them under the creditor's name, except for the creditor's rights exclusively belonging to the debtor.

The scope for exercising the subrogation is limited to the creditor's rights enjoyed by the creditor. The expenses required by the creditor's subrogation shall be borne by the debtor.

Article 74 If a debtor disclaims its due creditor's rights or transfers gratis its property and thus causes losses to the creditor, the creditor may apply to a people's court to rescind the debtor's action. The creditor may also apply to a people's court to rescind the debtor's action if the debtor causes losses to the creditor by transferring its property at a low price evidently unreasonable and with awareness of the transferee.

The scope for exercising the right of rescission is limited to the creditor's rights enjoyed by the creditor. The expenses required by the creditor in exercising its right of rescission shall be borne by the debtor.

Article 75 The right of rescission shall be exercised within one year from the day on which the creditor is aware or ought to be aware of the matters for the rescission. If a creditor does not exercise its right of rescission within five years from the day on which the action of the debtor occurred, the right of rescission shall vanish.

Article 76 After a contract has become valid, neither party may refuse to perform its obligations under the contract due to any change in name or designation or any change in legal representative, person in charge or sponsor.

Chapter V Modification and Transfer of the Contract

Article 77 The parties may modify the contract upon consensus through consultation.

Where provisions of laws and administrative regulations require the modification of a contract to go through approval and registration procedures, such provisions shall govern.

Article 78 A contract shall be assumed as not having been modified if the content of the modification of the contract is not clearly agreed upon by the parties.

Article 79 A creditor may transfer its rights under a contract in whole or part to a third party, except in any of the following circumstances:

(1) the transfer is not allowed according to the nature of the contract;

(2) the transfer is not allowed according to the agreement between the parties; or

(3) the transfer is not allowed according to the provisions of laws.

Article 80 Any transfer of rights by a creditor shall be notified to the debtor. The transfer shall not bind the debtor without such notification.

A creditor may not revoke the notice of its transfer of rights, except with the consent of the transferee.

Article 81 Where a creditor transfers its rights, the transferee shall also obtain the accessory rights related to the creditor's rights, except for cases the accessory rights exclusively belonging to the creditor.

Article 82 After a debtor has received a notice on the transfer of creditor's rights, the debtor may address its plea against the transferor to the transferee.

Article 83 When a debtor receives a notice on the transfer of creditor's rights, and if the debtor has creditor's rights over the transferee and the creditor's rights of the debtor are matured before or at the same time as the transferred creditor's rights, the debtor may advocate to the transferee an offset.

Article 84 If a debtor intends to transfer its obligations under a contract in whole or in part to a third party, consent shall be obtained from the creditor.

Article 85 If a debtor transfers its obligations, the new debtor may advocate the original debtor's plea against the creditor.

Article 86 If a debtor transfers its obligations, the new debtor shall assume the accessory debts related to the principal debts, except for the accessory debts exclusively assumed by the original debtor.

Article 87 Where provisions of laws and administrative regulations require the transfer of rights or obligations to go through approval and registration procedures, such provisions shall govern.

Article 88 Either party may, with the consent of the other party, transfer its rights together with its obligations under the contract to a third party.

Article 89 When rights together with obligations are transferred, the provisions of Article 79, Articles 81 to 83, and Articles 85 to 87 of this Law shall apply.

Article 90 Where a party merges after the execution of the contract, the legal person or the organization arising from the merger shall exercise the rights under the contract and fulfill the obligations under the contract. Where a party splits after the execution of the contract, unless the creditor and the debtor stipulate otherwise, the legal persons or the organizations arising from the split shall enjoy joint and several creditor's rights under the contract and assume joint and several liabilities under the contract.

Chapter VI Termination of Rights and Obligations under the Contract

Article 91 The rights and obligations under a contract shall terminate in any of the following situations:

(1) liabilities have all been met as contracted;

(2) the contract is dissolved;

(3) liabilities are offset against each other;

(4) the debtor has deposited the targeted matter according to law;

(5) the creditor grants exemption from liabilities;

(6) both creditor's rights and liabilities are undertaken by one same person; or

(7) other situations as provided for by law or stipulated by the parties.

Article 92 After the termination of rights and obligations under a contract, the parties shall perform the duties of notification, assistance and confidentiality in light of the principle of good faith and in accordance with trade practices.

Article 93 The parties may dissolve the contract upon consensus through consultation.

The parties may stipulate the conditions for dissolution of the contract by either party. When the conditions for dissolution of the contract mature, the party with the right to dissolve may dissolve the contract.

Article 94 The parties may dissolve the contract under any of the following circumstances:

(1) the aim of the contract cannot be attained because of force majeure;

(2) before the period of performance expires, either party clearly indicates by word or by act that it will not discharge the principal debts;

(3) either party delays the discharge of the principal debts and still fails to discharge them within a reasonable period of time after being urged;

(4) either party delays the discharge of debts or is engaged in other illegal activities and thus makes realization of the aim of the contract impossible; or

(5) any other circumstances as provided for by law.

Article 95 If a time limit for exercising the right to dissolve the contract is provided for by laws or by agreement of the parties, and the party concerned does not exercise such right at the expiration of the time limit, such right shall vanish.

If no time limit for exercising the right to dissolve is provided for by laws or by agreement of the parties, but the party concerned does not exercise such right within a reasonable period of time after being urged by the other party, such right shall vanish.

Article 96 When a party advocates the dissolution of the contract in accordance with the provisions of Paragraph 2 of Article 93 and Article 94 of this Law, the party shall notify the other party. The contract shall be dissolved when the notice reaches the other party. If the other party has objection, it may apply to a people's court or an arbitration institution to determine the validity of the dissolution of the contract.

Where provisions of laws and administrative regulations require the dissolution of a contract to go through approval and registration procedures, such provisions shall govern.

Article 97 After the dissolution of a contract, for those clauses not yet performed, the performance shall cease. For those already performed, the party concerned may, in accordance with the situation of performance and the nature of the contract, demand their restoration to the original status or take other remedial measures, and have the right to claim compensation.

Article 98 The termination of rights and obligations under a contract shall not affect the validity of its clauses regarding settlement and liquidation.

Article 99 If the parties mutually owe matured liabilities, and if the varieties and quality of targeted matters of the liabilities are the same, either party may offset its liabilities against those of the other party, except for the liabilities that cannot be offset according to the provisions of laws or according to the nature of the contract.

The party that advocates an offset shall notify the other party. The notice shall become effective when it reaches the other party. No conditions or time limit may be attached to the offset.

Article 100 If the parties mutually owe liabilities and the targeted matters are different in variety and quality, they may also be offset against each other upon consensus through consultation by the parties.

Article 101 The debtor may deposit its targeted matter if it has difficulty to discharge its debts owing to any of the following situations:

(1) the creditor refuses to accept the discharge without justifiable reason;

(2) the whereabouts of the creditor is unknown;

(3) the creditor dies without determining an heir or has lost capacity of civil conduct without determining a guardian; or

(4) other situations as provided for by law.

If the targeted matter is unsuitable for deposit or the deposit is too expensive, the debtor may auction or sell it and deposit the proceeds according to law.

Article 102 After the targeted matter is deposited, the debtor shall promptly notify the creditor or his heir or guardian thereof, unless the whereabouts of the creditor is unknown.

Article 103 The risk of damage and loss of the targeted matter after deposit shall be borne by the creditor. Accrued interest from the targeted matter during the period of deposit shall belong to the creditor. The expenses for depositing the targeted matter shall be borne by the creditor.

Article 104 The creditor may collect the deposited targeted matter at any time. However, if the creditor owes the debtor matured liabilities, the depositary agency shall, at the debtor's request, disallow the creditor to collect the targeted matter before meeting its own liabilities or providing a guarantee.

The right of a creditor to collect the targeted matter shall vanish if the right is not exercised within five years from the date of deposit and the targeted matter deposited shall belong to the State after deduction of the deposit expenses.

Article 105 If the creditor exempts the debtor from its liabilities in whole or in part, the rights and obligations under the contract shall terminate in whole or in part.

Article 106 If both creditor's rights and obligations are undertaken by one same person, the rights and obligations under the contract shall terminate, except for those involving the interests of a third party.

Chapter VII Liability for Breach of Contract

Article 107 Either party that fails to perform its obligations under the contract or fails to perform them as contracted shall bear the liability for breach of contract by continuing to perform the obligations, taking remedial measures, or compensating for losses.

Article 108 If either party explicitly expresses or indicates by act its intention not to perform its obligations under the contract, the other party may, before the expiration of the period of fulfillment, demand that the party in question bear the liability for breach of contract.

Article 109 If either party fails to pay charges or remuneration, the other party may demand the payment.

Article 110 If either party fails to discharge non-pecuniary debt or fails to discharge non-pecuniary debt as contracted, the other party may demand the discharge, except in any of the following situations:

(1) legally or practically the discharge is impossible;

(2) the targeted matter of the debt is unsuitable for a compulsory discharge or too expensive for the discharge; or

(3) the creditor does not demand the discharge within a reasonable period of time.

Article 111 If the quality fails to meet the agreed requirements, liability for breach of contract shall be borne in accordance with the agreement between the parties. If the liability for breach of contract is not stipulated or is not clearly stipulated, nor can it be determined pursuant to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the party suffering the loss may, with reference to the nature of the targeted matter and the degree of the loss, choose in a reasonable manner to demand that the other party bear the liability for breach of contract in such form as repair, replacement, redoing, return of the targeted matter, discount in payment or remuneration.

Article 112 Where either party fails to perform its obligations under the contract or does not perform its obligations as contracted, and losses are still caused to the other party after the performance of obligations or the adoption of remedial measures, the party in fault shall compensate for the losses.

Article 113 If either party fails to perform its obligations under the contract or does not perform its obligations as contracted and thus causes losses to the other party, the amount of compensation for the loss shall be equivalent to the loss actually caused by the breach of contract and shall include the profit obtainable after the performance of the contract, but shall not exceed the sum of the loss that might be caused by a breach of contract and has been anticipated or ought to be anticipated by the breaching party in the making of the contract.

A business operator who practices fraud in providing commodities or services to consumers shall undertake to compensate for the damage in accordance with the provisions of the Law of the People's Republic of China on the Protection of Consumers' Rights and Interests.

Article 114 The parties may stipulate that in case of breach of contract by either party a certain amount of penalty shall be paid to the other party according to the seriousness of the breach, and may also stipulate the method for calculating the sum of compensation for losses caused by the breach of contract.

If the stipulated penalty for breach of contract is lower than the loss caused by the breach, the party concerned may apply to a people's court or an arbitration institution for an increase. If the stipulated penalty for breach of contract is excessively higher than the loss caused by the breach, the party concerned may apply to a people's court or an arbitration institution for an appropriate reduction.

If the parties agree upon a penalty for the breach of contract by a delayed fulfillment, the breaching party shall, after paying the penalty for breach of contract, discharge the debts notwithstanding.

Article 115 The parties may, in accordance with the Guaranty Law of the People's Republic of China, agree that one party pays a deposit to the other party as a guarantee of the creditor's rights. After the debtor has met its liabilities, the deposit shall be calculated as part of the price or be refunded. If the party paying the deposit fails to meet its liabilities as contracted, it shall not be entitled to the refund of the deposit. If the party receiving the deposit fails to meet its liabilities as contracted, it shall doubly refund the deposit.

Article 116 In the event that a penalty for breach of contract and a deposit are both stipulated by the parties, when either party breaches the contract, the other party may choose to apply either the clause on penalty for breach of contract or the clause on deposit.

Article 117 If a contract cannot be fulfilled due to force majeure, the obligations may be exempted in whole or in part depending on the impact of the force majeure, unless laws provide otherwise. If the force majeure occurs after a delayed fulfillment, the obligations of the party concerned may not be exempted.

Force majeure as used herein means objective situations which cannot be foreseen, avoided or overcome.

Article 118 Either party that is unable to fulfill the contract due to force majeure shall notify the other party in time in order to reduce losses possibly inflicted to the other party, and shall provide evidence thereof within a reasonable period of time.

Article 119 After either party breaches the contract, the other party shall take appropriate measures to prevent the increase of the loss; the party that fails to take appropriate preventive measures and thus aggravates the loss may not claim compensation for the increased part of the loss.

The reasonable expenses incurred by the other party in preventing the aggravation of the loss shall be borne by the breaching party.

Article 120 If both parties breach the contract, they shall bear their respective liabilities accordingly.

Article 121 Either party that breaches the contract due to a third party shall bear the liability for breach of contract to the other party. The disputes between the breaching party and the third party shall be settled pursuant to law or by agreement.

Article 122 If the breach of contract by either party causes infringement on the personal or property rights and interests to the other party, the injured party has the right to choose whether to demand that the breaching party bear the liability for breach of contract pursuant to this Law or bear the liability for infringement of rights in accordance with other laws.

Chapter VIII Miscellaneous Provisions

Article 123 Where other laws stipulate otherwise on contracts, such provisions shall govern.

Article 124 For contracts not explicitly regulated by the Specific Provisions of this Law or other laws, the General Provisions of this Law shall apply, and the most similar provisions in the Specific Provisions of this Law or other laws may concurrently be used as reference.

Article 125 In the event that the parties dispute about the understanding of a clause of the contract, the actual meaning of the clause shall be inferred and determined on the basis of the words and sentences used in the contract, related clauses of the contract, aim of the contract, trade practices and the principle of good faith.

If a contract is made in two or more languages which are equally authentic as contracted, the words and sentences used in the different language texts shall be assumed to be identical in denotation. If the words and sentences used in different language texts contain discrepancies, they shall be interpreted according to the aim of the contract.

Article 126 The parties to a foreign-related contract may choose those laws applicable to the settlement of contract disputes, unless stipulated otherwise by law. If the parties to a foreign-related contract fail to make such choice, the State laws most closely related to the contract shall apply.

For the contracts to be fulfilled in the territory of the People's Republic of China on Chinese-foreign equity joint ventures, on Chinese-foreign contractual joint ventures and on Chinese-foreign cooperation in exploring and exploiting natural resources, the laws of the People's Republic of China shall apply.

Article 127 The administrative departments for industry and commerce and other relevant competent administrative departments shall, within the scope of their respective duties and powers and in accordance with the law, be responsible for the supervision and treatment of the illegal activities endangering the State's interests and the social and public interests by making use of contracts; if a crime is constituted, criminal responsibility shall be investigated pursuant to law.

Article 128 The parties may settle contract disputes through consultations or mediation.

If the parties are unwilling to resort to consultation or mediation, or such consultation or mediation fails, the parties may apply to an arbitration institution for arbitration according to the arbitration agreement. The parties to a foreign-related contract may, according to the arbitration agreement, apply to a Chinese arbitration institution or any other arbitration institution for arbitration. If the parties have no arbitration agreement or the arbitration agreement is invalid, they may initiate an action in a people's court. The parties shall implement any legally effective judgment, arbitral award or letter of mediation; in case of a refusal to implement, the other party may apply to a people's court for execution.

Article 129 The time limit for initiating legal proceedings or applying for arbitration regarding contracts of international sale of goods and contracts on technology import and export shall be four years, calculated from the day on which the party concerned is aware or ought to be aware of the infringement of its rights. The time limit for initiating legal proceedings or applying for arbitration regarding other contracts shall be governed by the provisions of relevant laws.

Specific Provisions

Chapter IX Purchase and Sale Contracts

Article 130 A "purchase and sale contract" is a contract whereby the seller transfers its ownership over the targeted matter to the buyer and the buyer pays the price therefor.

Article 131 In addition to those clauses prescribed in Article 12 of this Law, a purchase and sale contract may also contain such clauses as method of packaging, inspection standards and method, mode of settlement, language used for the contract and their validity.

Article 132 The seller shall own the targeted matter for sale or have the right of disposal.

For a targeted matter the transfer of which is forbidden or restricted by laws or administrative regulations, the provisions therein shall govern.

Article 133 The ownership over a targeted matter is transferred upon the delivery of the targeted matter, unless the law provides otherwise or the parties stipulate otherwise.

Article 134 The parties may stipulate in a purchase and sale contract that the seller retains the ownership over the targeted matter if the buyer fails to pay the price or to perform other obligations.

Article 135 The seller shall perform its obligations of delivering the targeted matter or providing documents for taking delivery of the targeted matter and transferring the ownership over the targeted matter to the buyer.

Article 136 The seller shall hand over the related certificates and data to the buyer as contracted or according to trade practices in addition to the documents for taking delivery of the targeted matter.

Article 137 Where targeted matters involving intellectual property rights such as computer software are to be sold, unless the laws provide otherwise or the parties stipulate otherwise, the intellectual property rights of these targeted matters shall not belong to the buyer.

Article 138 The seller shall deliver the targeted matter within the stipulated time limit. Where a time limit is stipulated for the delivery, the seller may deliver the targeted matter at any time within the time limit.

Article 139 If the time limit for delivery is not stipulated or is unclearly stipulated, the provisions of Article 61 and sub-paragraph 4, Article 62 of this Law shall apply.

Article 140 If the buyer has already possessed the targeted matter before the contract is entered into, the time at which the contract becomes valid is the time of delivery.

Article 141 The seller shall deliver the targeted matter to the agreed place of delivery.

If the place of delivery is not stipulated or is unclearly stipulated by the parties and cannot be determined according to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the following provisions shall apply:

(1) If the targeted matter needs to be transported, the seller shall consign the targeted matter to the first carrier for its delivery to the buyer; and

(2) If the targeted matter does not need to be transported, and if the seller and the buyer know the location of the targeted matter when entering into the contract, the seller shall deliver the targeted matter at the said location of the targeted matter; if the location of the targeted matter is unknown, the seller shall deliver the targeted matter at the seller's place of business at the time when the contract is made.

Article 142 The risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter shall be borne by the seller prior to the delivery and by the buyer after the delivery, unless the laws provide otherwise or the parties stipulate otherwise.

Article 143 If the targeted matter is unable to be delivered within the agreed time limit because of the buyer, the buyer shall bear the risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter from the date of breaching the agreement.

Article 144 When the seller consigns its sold targeted matter to a carrier for transport, unless the parties stipulate otherwise, the risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter en route shall be borne by the buyer from the time when the contract is made.

Article 145 If the place of delivery is not stipulated or is unclearly stipulated by the parties, and if the targeted matter needs to be transported according to sub-paragraph 1, paragraph 2, Article 141 of this Law, the buyer shall bear the risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter when the seller consigns the targeted matter to the first carrier for transport.

Article 146 If the seller puts the targeted matter at the place of delivery as contracted or in accordance with the provisions of sub-paragraph 2, paragraph 2, Article 141 of this Law and if the buyer, in violation of the stipulation, does not take delivery of the targeted matter, the risks of damage and loss shall be borne by the buyer from the day on which the buyer violates the stipulations.

Article 147 The seller's failure to provide documents and data in relation to the targeted matter as contracted shall not affect the shift of the risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter.

Article 148 If the aim of a contract cannot be achieved owing to the fact that the quality of a targeted matter fails to meet the requirements, the buyer may refuse to accept the targeted matter or may dissolve the contract. In case the buyer refuses to accept the targeted matter or dissolves the contract, the risks of damage and loss of the targeted matter shall be borne by the seller.

Article 149 The responsibility of the buyer to bear the risks of damage and loss of a targeted matter shall not affect the buyer's right to demand that the seller bear the liability for breach of contract if the seller's discharge of debts fails to comply with the agreement.

Article 150 The seller has the obligation to guarantee that no third party shall claim rights against the buyer over the targeted matter delivered unless the law provides otherwise.

Article 151 If the buyer is aware or ought to be aware that a third party has rights over the targeted matter while entering into the contract, the seller shall not assume the obligations stipulated in Article 150 of this Law.

Article 152 Where a buyer has clear evidence to prove that a third party may probably claim rights over the targeted matter, the buyer may suspend the payment therefor, except in the case that the seller has provided an appropriate guarantee.

Article 153 The seller shall deliver the targeted matter in accordance with the contracted quality requirements. When the seller provides quality specifications of the targeted matter, the targeted matter delivered shall conform to the specified quality requirements.

Article 154 If the parties have not stipulated or have unclearly stipulated the quality requirements of the targeted matter, nor can they determine them pursuant to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the provisions of sub-paragraph 1 of Article 62 of this Law shall apply.

Article 155 If the targeted matter delivered by the seller fails to meet the quality requirements, the buyer may demand that the seller bear the liability for breach of contract pursuant to the provisions of Article 111 of this Law.

Article 156 The seller shall deliver the targeted matter in compliance with the contracted packaging method. If the parties have not stipulated or have unclearly stipulated the packaging method, nor can they determine it pursuant to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the targeted matter shall be packed in a general way, and in the absence of a general way, it shall be packed in a manner sufficient to protect the targeted matter.

Article 157 The buyer shall inspect the targeted matter after receiving it within the agreed period for inspection. If no period for inspection is stipulated, the buyer shall inspect the targeted matter in time.

Article 158 If the parties stipulate the period for inspection, the buyer shall, within the period for inspection, notify the seller of any unconformity of the targeted matter with the agreed quantity or quality. If the buyer is indolent to notify the seller thereof, the targeted matter shall be deemed in conformity with the agreed quantity or quality.

If the parties have not stipulated an inspection period, the buyer shall notify the seller of the unconformity of the targeted matter with the agreed quantity or quality within a reasonable period of time after it discovers or ought to discover the unconformity. If the seller fails to notify the seller within a reasonable period of time or within two years after the date of taking delivery of the targeted matter, the targeted matter shall be deemed in conformity with the agreed quantity or quality. However, in the event that there is a quality guarantee period for the targeted matter, the quality guarantee period shall apply instead of the provisions on the two-year limit.

If the seller is aware or ought to be aware of the unconformity of the targeted matter with the stipulation, the buyer shall not be limited by the informing time limit stipulated in the preceding paragraphs.

Article 159 The buyer shall effect the payment in accordance with the contracted price. If the parties have not stipulated or have unclearly stipulated the price, the provisions of Article 61 and sub-paragraph 2, Article 62 of this Law shall apply.

Article 160 The buyer shall effect the payment at the agreed place. If the parties have not stipulated or have unclearly stipulated the place of payment, nor can they determine it pursuant to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the buyer shall pay at the place of business of the seller or, if the delivery of the targeted matter or that of the document for taking delivery of the targeted matter is contracted as the precondition for the payment, the payment shall be effected at the place where the targeted matter or the document for taking delivery of the targeted matter is delivered.

Article 161 The buyer shall effect the payment at the agreed time. If the time for payment is not stipulated or not clearly stipulated, nor can it be determined pursuant to the provisions of Article 61 of this Law, the buyer shall pay at the same time as it takes delivery of the targeted matter or receives the document for taking delivery of the targeted matter.

Article 162 If the seller delivers extra targeted matter, the buyer may accept or refuse to accept the extra part. If the buyer accepts the extra, it shall pay for the extra at the price contracted. If the buyer refuses to accept the extra, the buyer shall promptly notify the seller.

Article 163 Any accrued interest generated by the targeted matter shall belong to the seller before delivery and to the buyer after the delivery.

Article 164 If a contract is dissolved due to the unconformity of the principal targeted matter with the contracted requirements, the effect of the dissolution shall extend to the accessory matters. If the contract is dissolved due to the unconformity of the accessory matters with the contracted requirements, the effect of the dissolution shall not extend to the principal targeted matter.

Article 165 If a targeted matter is composed of several objects and one of them fails to meet the contracted requirements, the buyer may dissolve the part of the contract in connection with that object. If the separation of that object from the other objects affects markedly the value of the targeted matter, the party concerned may dissolve the contract in connection with the several objects.

Article 166 For the targeted matter to be delivered by batches, if the seller leaves one batch of the targeted matter not delivered, or delivered in a manner not in conformity with the agreement, so that the aim of the contract in connection with that batch of the targeted matter cannot be attained, the buyer may dissolve what is in connection with that batch of the targeted matter.

If the seller leaves one batch of the targeted matter not delivered, or delivered in a manner not in conformity with the agreement, so that the subsequent delivery of the remaining batches of the targeted matter cannot attain the aim contracted, the buyer&

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