Hong Kong Legal System
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4. Besides the Basic Law, Common Law and the Rules of Equity, what sort of laws exist in the Hong Kong Legal System?

Statute law makes up a large component of the Hong Kong laws. It consists of written ordinances of which the majority are passed by legislative procedure in the Legislative Council of the HKSAR, and they eventually become the Laws of Hong Kong (for details of each ordinance, please refer to the "Hong Kong e-Legislation"). In addition, some legislations are made under delegated powers. This is called subsidiary legislation. For example, an ordinance may delegate to the Chief Executive in Council (the Chief Executive with the advice of the Executive Council) the power to make regulations to deal with the details of the implementation of a legislative scheme.

However, some ordinances are not made locally such as:-

Chinese customary law

Some aspects of Chinese customary law apply in Hong Kong. For example, under section 13 of the New Territories Ordinance (Cap. 97) the courts may recognize and enforce Chinese customs or customary rights in relation to land in the New Territories.

International law

Over 200 international treaties and agreements have been applied to Hong Kong. A treaty does not constitute part of Hong Kong's domestic law until it is given effect by legislation. Nonetheless, it may affect the development of the common law. It may, for example, be resorted to by a court as an aid to interpret certain ordinance. The rapidly developing rules of customary international law can also become absorbed into the common law.

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