New Book: Japanese and European Private International Law in Comparative Perspective


A very interesting volume, collecting the contributions presented by prominent European and Japanese scholars at a conference organised in 2007 by the Max Planck Institute for Private Law in Hamburg, has been recently published by Mohr Siebeck: Japanese and European Private International Law in Comparative Perspective. A presentation of the book, and the TOC, are available on the MPI’s website:

Edited by Jürgen Basedow, Harald Baum und Yuko Nishitani, this conference volume is based on a symposium of the same name that was held in March 2007 at the MPI for Private Law in Hamburg and represents the first comprehensive analysis of the new Japanese private international law in any western language.

The idea of national codification is advancing on a global scale in conflict of laws. A large number of legislative projects dealing with codifying and modernizing private international law, both on the national and the supranational level, have been launched in the past few years. Among such recent initiatives, the advances taken by the European and the Japanese legislators are particularly reflecting these developments. On January 1, 2007, the new Japanese ‘Act on General Rules for Application of Laws’ entered into force replacing the outdated conflict of laws statute of 1898. This major reform finds its parallels in the current efforts of the European Union to create a modern private international law regime for its member states.

This volume presents the first comprehensive analysis of the new Japanese private international law available in any western language and contrasts it with corresponding European developments. Most of the contributors from Japan are scholars who were actively involved in and responsible for preparing the new Act. All of them are renowned experts in the field of private international law. Leading European experts in the conflict of laws supplement the Japanese analyses with comparative contributions reflecting the pertinent discussion of parallel endeavours in the EU. To guarantee better understanding, English translations of both the present and the former Japanese statutes have been added.

Table of Contents:

I. General Introduction
Jürgen Basedow: The Recent Development of the Conflict of Laws – Trevor C Hartley: The Brussels Regulation and Non-Community States – Masato Dogauchi: Historical Development of Japanese Private International Law – Hironori Wanami: Background and Outline of the Modernization of Japanese Private International Law

II. Contractual Obligations
Yuko Nishitani: Party Autonomy and Its Restrictions by Mandatory Rules in Japanese Private International Law – Catherine Kessedjian: Party Autonomy and Characteristic Performance in the Rome Convention and the Rome I Proposal – Fausto Pocar: Protection of Weaker Parties in the Rome Convention and the Rome I Proposal

III. Assignment of Receivables
Aki Kitazawa: Law Applicable to the Assignment of Receivables in Japan (Nihon ni okeru saiken jôto no junkyo-hô) – Eva-Maria Kieninger: General Principles on the Law Applicable to the Assignment of Receivables in Europe

IV. International Company Law
Dai Yokomizo: International Company Law in Japan – Sylvaine Poillot-Peruzzetto: International Company Law in the ECJ Decisions – Daniel Zimmer: The Proposal of the Deutscher Rat für Internationales Privatrecht

V. Non-Contractual Obligations
Toshiyuki Kono: Critical and Comparative Analysis of the Rome II Regulation on Applicable Laws to Non-contractual Obligations and the New Private International Law in Japan – Thomas Kadner Graziano: General Principles of Private International Law of Tort in Europe – Marc Fallon: The Law Applicable to Specific Torts in Europe

VI. International Family Law
Yasuhiro Okuda: Divorce, Protection of Minors, and Child Abduction in Japan’s Private International Law – Maarit Jänterä-Jareborg: Jurisdiction and Applicable Law in Cross-Border Divorce Cases in Europe – Alegría Borrás: Protection of Minors and Child Abduction under the Hague Conventions and the Brussels II bis Regulation

VII. International Civil Procedure Law
Yoshihisa Hayakawa: International Adjudicative Jurisdiction in Japan – Dieter Martiny: Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Germany and Europe

Annex I
Major European Community Legislation in Private International Law

Annex II
Japanese Legislation in Private International Law

Title: Japanese and European Private International Law in Comparative Perspective, edited by Jürgen Basedow, Harald Baum, and Yuko Nishitani, Mohr Siebeck (Materialien zum ausländischen und internationalen Privatrecht/48), Tübingen, March 2008, XVIII + 434 pages.

ISBN: 978-3-16-149547-2. Price: euro 89.