Professor Heng Wang

Heng Wang is a professor and co-director of UNSW Law & Justice's Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre, the largest centre in this field outside China. He is also a co-director of the Tsinghua-UNSW Joint Research Centre for International Commercial and Economic Law (JCICEL). Heng has been recognized domestically and internationally for his outstanding contributions in the fields of international economic development and Chinese law, including being named Australia's research field leader in international law by The Australian newspaper’s Research 2020 magazine. Besides books, he has published extensively in leading journals in English and Chinese

His current research focuses on law and technology (particularly central bank digital currency (CBDC), digital currency and sustainable development), Chinese law, and international economic development (e.g., the Belt and Road Initiative, the China-US relationship, free trade agreements). His recent work has examined, among other topics, the future international financial system in view of CBDC, China’s approach to international economic order and the Belt and Road Initiative, the Belt and Road agreements, and US-China trade war

Heng is currently or has been an Executive Council member of the Society of International Economic Law (2008-2015), a founding member of the Asian International Economic Law Network, a member of the Asian WTO Research Network, and an executive member of governing council of all three Chinese societies of international economic law or WTO law. Prior to joining UNSW in 2015, Heng was a professor at the Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL), China, where he headed a WTO law centre. He has also been the recipient of over 20 top research awards and a number of major grants, including the triennial China Outstanding Law Research Award, twice, (China Law Society) and the Outstanding Research Award in Humanities and Social Science (Chinese Ministry of Education).  

As a leader in his field, Heng has spoken at over 70 universities across America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, including Harvard University, Oxford University, Columbia University, New York University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Virginia, the LSE and University of Paris 1. Furthermore, as a visiting professor, he has taught at the Case Western Reserve University, China University of Political Science and Law, SWUPL, University of Ottawa, Xiamen University, and Yokohama National University. More recently, he taught courses at National University of Singapore and Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen).Heng was also a Fernand Braudel Senior Fellow and Max Weber Fellow at the European University Institute, and conducted research at the WTO Secretariat. Furthermore, Heng’s more recent focus on the intersections between law and technology has led to a broad range of engagements, including serving as a panellist at the major events (e.g., DC FinTech Week at Capitol Hill), interviews with a leading podcast and media outlet, and the delivery of (keynote) addresses. 

Heng has advised or spoken at the events organized by the government, international organizations and institutions (e.g., the APEC, the Bank for International Settlements, International Chamber of Commerce, UNCITRAL, WTO), and the private sector, and is an arbitrator at arbitration institutions in and outside China. Heng is regularly interviewed by media in Australia, China, the US and elsewhere, including by the BBC, Reuters, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the South China Morning Post, SBS, Australia Financial Review, and the Australian.


Wang H, 2010, 服务原产地规则研究 (The Rules on the Origin of Service), Law Press, China, Beijing

Edited Books

Picker C; Wang H; Zhou W, (eds.), 2018, China - Australia Free Trade Agreement: A 21st-Century Model, Hart Publishing, Oxford; Portland, Oregon,

Wang H, (ed.), 2015, Legal Issues of China's Response to WTO Disputes

Wang H, (ed.), 2014, International Trade Law, Law Press China, Beijing,

Zhang X; Chen Y; Wang H, (eds.), 2012, International Economic Law, Xiamen University Press, China,

Journal articles

Shen W; Wang H, 2021, 'Libra and China's CBDC: New Challengers with New Impacts on the Financial System', Review of Banking & Financial Law, vol. 41

Wang H, 2021, 'How to Assess Regional Trade Agreements? Deep FTAs v. China’s Trade Agreements', The International Lawyer, vol. 54, pp. 247 - 279,

Wang H, 2021, 'The Belt and Road Initiative Agreements: Characteristics, Rationale and Challenges', World Trade Review, vol. 20, pp. 282 - 305,

Wang H, 2021, 'Selective Engagement? Future Path for US-China Economic Relations and Its Implications', Journal of World Trade, vol. 55, pp. 309 - 334,

Wang H, 2020, 'Selective Reshaping: China’s Paradigm Shift in International Economic Governance', Journal of International Economic Law, vol. 23, pp. 583 - 606,

Huiqin J; Wang H, 2020, 'China's Regulatory Approach to the Sharing Economy: A Perspective on Ride-Hailing', Journal of Law, Technology and Policy, vol. 2020, pp. 85 - 108,

Wang H, 2019, 'China’s Approach to the Belt and Road Initiative: Scope, Character and Sustainability', Journal of International Economic Law, vol. 22, pp. 29 - 55,

Wang H; Xiao Z, 2019, 'China's Free Trade Agreement Approach to Intellectual Property: The Future of China's Rules under the Belt and Road Initiative', Law Science (Fa Xue), pp. 107 - 128,$9A4hF_YAuvQ5obgVAqNKPCYcEjKensW4IQMovwHtwkF4VYPoHbKxJw!!

Wang H, 2019, 'The Future of Deep Free Trade Agreements: The Convergence of TPP (and CPTPP) and CETA?', Journal of World Trade, vol. 53, pp. 317 - 342,

Wang H, 2018, 'Divergence, Convergence or Crossvergence of Chinese and US Approaches to Regional Integration: Evolving Trajectories and Their Implications', Tsinghua China Law Review, vol. 10, pp. 149 - 185,

Wang H, 2018, 'How May China Respond to the U.S. Trade Approach? Retaliatory, Inclusive and Regulatory Responses', Columbia Journal of Asian Law,

Xi J; Zhou W; Wang H, 2018, 'The impact of the China–Australia Free Trade Agreement on Australia's education exports to China: A legal and economic assessment', World Economy, vol. 41, pp. 3503 - 3523,

Wang H, 2017, 'The rcep and Its Investment Rules: Learning from Past Chinese ftas', The Chinese Journal of Global Governance, vol. 3, pp. 160 - 181,

Wang H, 2016, 'The features of China's recent FTA and their implications: An anatomy of the China-Korea FTA', Asian Journal of WTO and International Health Law and Policy, vol. 11, pp. 115 - 154,

Wang H, 2016, 'The challenges of China’s recent FTA: An anatomy of the China-Korea FTA', Journal of World Trade, vol. 50, pp. 417 - 446

Wang H, 2016, 'The Implications of the Trans-Pacific Partnership for SMEs: Opportunities and Challenges', KLRI Journal of Law and Legislation, vol. 6, pp. 45 - 82,


Wang H; Guo H, 2013, 'Law and Economic Analysis of WTO Domestic Regulation Disciplines for Services Trade', Wuhan University International Law Review (Wu Da Guo Ji Fa Ping Lun)

Wang H; Hui K, 2013, 'Fair and Equitable Treatment of International Investment Law', Law Science (Fa Xue)

Wang H; Wang G, 2012, 'On British Depositor Protection Scheme Reform in the Post-Financial Crisis Era: Perfection of China’s Depositor Protection System', Contemporary Law Review (Dang Dai Fa Xue)

Wang H, 2012, 'On the Application of International Services Trade Law to Climate Change: A Perspective from General Exceptions', Modern Law Science (Xian Dai Fa Xue)

Wang H; Ke Y, 2012, 'The Substantive Rules of Domestic Regulation in the GATS: Flaws and Strategies', Law Science (Fa Xue)

Wang H, 2012, 'The interpretation of GATS disciplines on economic integration: GATS commitments as a threshold?', Journal of World Trade, vol. 46, pp. 397 - 438

Wang H, 2010, 'WTO Origin Rules for Services and the Defects: Substantial Input Test as One Way Out?', Journal of World Trade, vol. 44, pp. 1083 - 1108,

Wang H, 2006, 'Chinese views on modern marco polos: New foreign trade amendments after WTO accession', Cornell International Law Journal, vol. 39, pp. 329 - 369

Book Chapters

Wang H; Wang L, 2020, 'China's Bilateral Investment Treaties', in Chaisse J; Choukroune L; Jusoh S (ed.), Handbook of International Investment Law and Policy, Springer,

Wang H, 2019, 'The legal issues of RCEP investment rules', in Economic Integration in Asia, Routledge, pp. 71 - 92,

Wang H, 2019, 'The Legal Issues of RCEP Investment Rules: A Sino-ASEAN Perspective', in Mukherjee D (ed.), Economic Integration in Asia: Key Prospects and Challenges with the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, Routledge,

Wang H, 2019, 'The RCEP Investment Rules and China', in China's International Investment Strategy, Oxford University Press, pp. 243 - 257,

Wang H, 2019, 'The RCEP Investment Rules and China: Learning from the Malleability of Chinese FTAs', in Chaisse J (ed.), China's International Investment Strategy-- Bilateral, Regional, and Global Law and Policy, Oxford University Press, pp. 243 - 257,

Wang H, 2019, 'Building Towards the RCEP? Reflections on the ASEAN-China FTA', in Hsieh PL; Mercurio B (ed.), ASEAN Law in the New Regional Economic Order: Global Trends and Shifting Paradigms, Cambridge University Press, pp. 46 - 63,

Wang H, 2018, 'An Analytical Introduction to the ChAFTA: Features and Challenges', in The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement: A 21st Century Model, pp. 19 - 44,

Wang H, 2017, 'The Differences Between China’s Recent FTA and the TPP: A Case Study of the China-Korea FTA', in Economics, Law, and Institutions in Asia Pacific, Springer Singapore, pp. 293 - 305,

Wang H, 2017, 'An Asian Perspective on SMEs in International Economic Law', in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises in International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, pp. 189 - 215,

Wang H, 2017, 'The Differences Between China’s Recent FTA and the TPP', in Paradigm Shift in International Economic Law Rule-Making, Springer

Wang H, 2017, 'The Asian Perspective on SMEs in International Trade Law: Opportunities and Challenges Arising from the TPP', in Rensmann T (ed.), Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises in International Economic Law, edn. International Economic Law Series, Oxford University Press, pp. 189 - 215,

Wang H, 2016, 'The Interpretation of WTO Services Schedules', in The Future of the WTO, Shanghai People’s Press

Wang H, 2016, 'Subsidies Issues in Renewable Energy Trade', in Matsushita M; Schoenbaum T (ed.), Emerging Issues in Sustainable Development : International Trade Law and Policy Relating to Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment, Springer, pp. 343 - 352

Wang H, 2009, 'Enhancing business participation in trade policy-making: Lessons from China', in Redesigning the World Trade Organization for the Twenty-first Century, pp. 257 - 284


Working Papers

Wang H, 2011, China, Free Trade Agreements and WTO Law: A Perspective on the Trade in Services, EUI Working Paper MWP 2011/05, http://dx.doi.org

International economic law, Chinese law, trade law

Gerkin DJ; Wang H, 2020, Will COVID-19 Affect International Trade and Globalization?,



Research|20 Apr 2021
Is the future of money digital?
Should commercial banks be concerned about central banks issuing a new form of currency to individuals?
Achievement|23 Feb 2021
Spotlight on Professor Heng Wang
Professor Heng Wang was recently awarded a Best Paper Prize at the Machine Lawyering Conference 2021 hosted by the Chinese University of Hong Kong in January 2021.
Research|30 Nov 2020
Reshaping the future of international economic governance
Developments in international economic law could alter Australia's relationship with China and other key trading partners, says UNSW Law’s Professor Heng Wang.
Thought leadership|03 Jul 2020
The way forward for Australia-China trade relations
UNSW academics offer differing solutions in the attempt to ‘cool down’ rising trade tensions between Australia and China.
Opinion|04 Jun 2020
China-led RCEP provides starting point for reducing tensions and building new global trade rules
World commerce badly needs a confidence boost amid increasing protectionism and deteriorating relations between trade partners. Bilateral approaches are insufficient with high trade tensions while multilateral institutions like the WTO struggle to adapt to new challenges.
Opinion|06 Mar 2020
OPINION: How world trade will be affected by COVID-19
COVID-19 brings a pressure test for governments, businesses and the public, affecting both demand and supply in trade.
Opinion|Thought leadership|30 Jan 2020
US-China phase one trade deal: what does it mean?
While phase one of the US-China trade deal will curb tensions, more work is needed to provide predictability and protection to the world economic order.
Achievement|02 Aug 2019
Hong Kong and Singapore roadshow a success for CIBEL Centre
Roadshow helps to strengthen research collaboration with academic staff in five top universities.
Achievement|Opinion|15 May 2019
How will the US-China trade war affect Australia?
The trade war will have mixed implications for Australia, says UNSW Faculty of Law Associate Professor Heng Wang.
22 Jan 2019
Associate Professor Heng Wang talks Central Bank Digital Currency
Professor Heng Wang, from the Faculty of Law discusses Central Bank Digital Currency, China business and economic law.
16 Nov 2018
UNSW Law and Herbert Smith Freehills partner on China international business and economic law research
The five-year partnership will strengthen research and joint education initiatives that contribute to economic relationships between Australia and China.
20 Oct 2017
Strengthening our commitment to China and the region
UNSW Law’s China International Business & Economic Law (CIBEL) Initiative travelled to Beijing last month to further drive collaboration and strengthen the Faculty’s commitment to China and the region.