Following a proposal by the German Government, representatives of the Federal Republic of Germany and the People’s Republic of China signed the Agreement on Exchange and Cooperation in the Legal Field on 30 June 2000. That formed the legal foundation for the expansion and intensification of bilateral relations in the field of law and ultimately led to the Sino-German Rule of Law Dialogue.
Since 2000, an annual symposium at ministerial level has been held alternately in China and the Federal Republic of Germany. These symposia are supported by project work and individual measures of various state bodies and non-governmental organisations.
The idea behind the Sino-German Rule of Law Dialogue came from former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, who wanted to establish a permanent platform for exchange and cooperation on matters of law between the two countries. The aim was to create a forum that would enable the Federal Republic of Germany to support and influence the legal and economic reforms in the People’s Republic of China. The primary objective is to stress to the partners in China the importance of the freedom of citizens and of respect for universal human and civil rights as essential prerequisites for stability and civil peace. A further aim is to provide legal advisory services oriented towards the market economy.