Amazon has traditionally operated in China through a subsidiary named yoyo.com.
In its 2009 10-K filing to the SEC, Amazon has a characteristically euphemistic way to describe regulatory fiat in China
Although we believe that Joyo Amazon’s structure complies with existing PRC laws, it involves unique risks. There are substantial uncertainties regarding the interpretation of PRC laws and regulations, and it is possible that the PRC government will ultimately take a view contrary to ours.
Please look attentively, because it cuts deeper than meets the eye.
The 10-K makes subtle reference to the “PRC government” – not courts – as the ultimate ruler on compliance and interpretation of Chinese law.