Associate Professor Weihuan Zhou
Associate Professor

Associate Professor Weihuan Zhou

Ph.D, LL.M, MIB (University of Sydney), LLB (SISU)

Law & Justice
School of Private & Commercial Law

I have great interest in the field of international economic law. My research focuses on the laws of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Customs law especially trade remedies, free trade agreements, Chinese commercial law, China’s regulations of international trade and investment, China’s integration into the international and regional economic order. I have published widely on these topics in a range of top international and domestic journals such as American Journal of International Law, Journal of International Economic Law, World Trade Review, Journal of World Trade, International & Comparative Law Quarterly, Leiden Journal of International Law, the China Quarterly, Melbourne Journal of International Law, the World Economy, Australian Law Journal, Chinese Journal of Comparative Law, and Tsinghua China Law Review. My work has been cited widely, including in European Parliament briefings, reports of the Parliament of Australia, Australia’s Productivity Commission, US Congressional Research Services and World Economic Forum as well as by leading scholars in my field.

At UNSW Law & Justice, I am Director of Research and Co-Director of the Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre. The CIBEL Centre is a university funded long term and strategic initiative to enhance research strength in the areas of international business and economic law of relevance to China in the twenty-first century. The CIBEL website is here: Globally, I am currently Co-Secretary of the Society of International Economic Law (SIEL), one of the world’s leading organisations for academics and academically-minded practitioners and officials in international economic law:

Prior to joining UNSW Law in 2015, I was a trade and commercial lawyer at a top-tier Australian law firm in Sydney. In that capacity, I advised the Government of China (represented by China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM)), Chinese industry associations, and numerous major producers and exporters from different countries in various trade remedy investigations in Australia. I also acted for major Chinese state-owned enterprises and private companies in a number of cross-border transactions including major Chinese investment into energy and resources, agriculture and property in Australia. Before that, I conducted research at the Faculty of Law, University of Sydney. My unpublished Ph.D thesis, completed in 2012, was on “Adjudicating De Facto Discrimination under the GATT National Treatment Rule: The Role of Regulatory Purpose”. Before that, I was a consultant at the WTO Secretariat. In that capacity, I developed two of the major online courses of the WTO including: “The Multilateral Trade Agreements” (554 pages) and “Market Access for goods and Non-Agricultural Market Access (NAMA) Negotiations” (382 pages), amongst other responsibilities. Currently, I continue to consult for leading Australian law firms on foreign trade and investment matters. I am a qualified lawyer in Australia.

+61 (2) 9065 2102
The Law Building
  • Journal articles | 2019
    Zhou W; Gao H; Bai X, 2019, 'Building A Market Economy Through WTO-Inspired Reform of State-Owned Enterprises in China', International and Comparative Law Quarterly, vol. 68, pp. 977 - 1022,

2022 “Engaging with China to Reform the World Trading System”, Hong Kong Research Grants Council General Research Fund, co-Investigator, with Bryan Mercurio and Qingjiang Kong (HK$1,067,713 / AU$200,000), 2023-2025.

2022 “International Regulation of Cross-Border Subsidies and China’s Policy Options”, National Social and Science Fund of China, co-Investigator (200,000 RMB / AU$43,000), 2023-2025.

2021 “Regulation of State-owned Enterprises in International Trade Agreements and China’s Policy Options”, National Social and Science Fund of China, co-Investigator (200,000 RMB / AU$43,000), 2021-2024.

2018 CIBEL Seeds Grant (with Associate Professor Henry Gao at Singapore Management University) (Between Market Economy and State Capitalism: China’s State-Owned Enterprises and the World Trading System)

2018 University of New South Wales/Tsinghua-UNSW Collaborative Research Fund - Seed Grant(Co-investigator)(Financial Innovation and Regulatory change in the Context of De-globalisation: China's Approach and the Implications for Australia)

2017 University of New South Wales/SJTU-UNSW Collaborative Research Fund - Seed Grant(Chief Investigator)(China's Liberalization of Trade in Education Services under ChAFTA)

2016 University of New South Wales/SJTU-UNSW Collaborative Research Fund - Seed Grant(Chief Investigator)(China's Liberalization of Trade in Legal Services under ChAFTA)

2015 Early Career Research Teaching and Development Support Fund, UNSW Law

My research expertise covers international trade regulation, the laws of the World Trade Organisation, Customs law especially anti-dumping and countervailing laws and practice, free trade agreement, general international economic law, cross-border transactions especially foreign investment into Australia, Chinese commercial law and regulations of foreign investment, Chinese trade policies and regulations, general Chinese commercial law.

My current research explores the capacity of the WTO to deal with state capitalism, China's implementation of WTO rulings, the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement particularly the liberalisation of trade in services, the theoretical foundation for a multilateral trading system, and the issues of non-market economies.

My Research Supervision

1. Xiaomeng Qu, "A Comparative Analysis of Compulsory Acquisition Law", co-supervise with Professor Brendan Edgeworth
2. Simon Lacey, "International Trade Rules for the Digital Economy: Can We Discern an Emerging Consensus?", co-supervise with A/Professor Heng Wang

3. Oxana Wolfson, "Proposed Solutions to Potential Legal Violations by the Private Sector Involved in International Water Trade, Infrastructure Financing, and Utility Delivery" co-supervise with Dr Janice Gray

PHD completions
1. Thuan Hoang, "Antidumping Regulations and Systems in Vietnam", co-supervise with Professor Lisa Toohey and Professor Colin Picker (completion in 2018 with two As).

My Teaching


  • Principles of Private Law (LAWS1150)
  • Principles of Private Law (JURD7150)
  • International Trade Law: The Law and Policy of the WTO (LAWS3084)
  • International Trade Law: The Law and Policy of the WTO (JURD7484)
  • International Trade Remedies: Law and Practices (LAWS3354)
  • International Trade Remedies: Law and Practices (JURD7554)
  • International Business Transactions (LAWS8993)
  • International Business Transactions (JURD7593)
  • Chinese Regulation of International Business (LAWS3157)
  • Chinese Regulation of International Business (JURD7657)
  • Intro to Chinese Regulation of Int'l Business (LAWS8365)
  • Intro to Chinese Regulation of Int'l Business (JURD7765)