The practice of adverse document production or disclosure is largely foreign in civil law jurisdictions like mainland China. Despite resistance, the growth of judicial practice on document production prompted the Supreme People’s Court of China (“SPC”) to make the new Rules of Evidence on Civil Procedure (“Rules of Evidence”) on December 25, 2019, effective as…

Document production in China – getting to maybe Document production (also known as “discovery”) is still a very foreign concept in China’s civil law court system. The traditional notion of “who claims, proves” (“谁主张,谁举证“) in China’s Civil Procedural Law has ingrained in people’s mind that one has to prove its case by its own evidence….

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (“BRI”) is well known as the largest infrastructure construction program in world history. President Xi Jinping announced its two components in 2013; one is a land-based Silk Road Economic Belt and one a sea-based 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. His grand plan includes overland and maritime work to build bridges,…

Dr. Li Hu is Deputy Secretary-General of China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (“CIETAC”), Vice Chairman of China Maritime Arbitration Commission, and also Board Member of the Arbitration Institute of Stockholm Chamber of Commerce. He has authored several publications on dispute resolution in China and has served as arbitrator in over 120 domestic and…

Gong Xi Fa Cai! The Year of the Earth Pig has drawn to a close. In what was certainly an auspicious and lucky year for arbitration developments in East and Central Asia, we take a closer look at five key developments:   1. Initiatives in PR China to boost arbitration In southern coastal China, the…

Private antitrust actions were long thought to be non-arbitrable due to the public law character of antitrust law, though the scope of non-arbitrability has been reduced to varying extents in different jurisdictions. For instance, US courts had long adhered to the so-called “American Safety doctrine”, which limited the arbitrability of domestic antirust disputes. The scope of…

Introduction At the latest ODR Forum which was held on 29-31 October 2019 in Williamsburg, Virginia, Dr Anyu Lee presented on China’s vision of online dispute resolution (“ODR”). He discussed how far China has progressed in developing artificial intelligence (“AI”) tools for online courts, arbitration and mediation. He also described the potential of AI in…

On 1 October 2019, Mainland Chinese and Hong Kong bodies brought into force a reciprocal arrangement with significant implications for Hong Kong as a seat of arbitration. The arrangement allows the courts of each jurisdiction to award interim measures in support of arbitrations seated in the other territory. Parties to Hong Kong-seated arbitrations have been…

As Hong Kong Arbitration Week 2019 hits the midway point, we asked three next-generation arbitration practitioners: how do you see the future of arbitration in Hong Kong? These are their answers: Joyce Leung: As a construction lawyer, I am seeing an increase in arbitrations arising from the construction sector in light of the completion of…

Joe is the longest-serving counsel in HKIAC, having been at HKIAC since January 2014. He holds LLMs from New York University and London School of Economics and Political Science. His previous stints included private practice as well as that in SIAC. In January 2019, he was appointed as the Deputy Secretary-General of HKIAC. Our Blog…

Introduction Agreements governing the relationship of shareholders to each other and to the company (e.g., shareholders’, investment or subscription agreements) (collectively, “SHAs”) frequently address matters of corporate law. In the Chinese context, this creates uncertainty whether a given SHA dispute would be arbitrable as a “contractual dispute” or ”property rights dispute”, as required by Article…

On 6 August 2019, the State Council of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) (the “State Council”) published the “Framework Plan for the New Lingang Area of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone” (the “2019 Framework Plan”). Under Article 4 of the 2019 Framework Plan, reputable foreign arbitration and dispute resolution institutions may register…

Under China’s arbitration regime for foreign-related arbitration and international arbitration, the concept of a juridical seat is a statutory juncture where, in cases with no express agreement on the applicable law between the parties, Chinese courts must determine the applicable law (statutory text is available in Chinese here and unofficial English translation here). Recently, in…

In the case of ZL Offshore [translation] (“ZL”) v PICC P&C Shipping Insurance Operation Centre [translation] (the “Operation Centre”) and PICC P&C Zhoushan City Branch [translation] (the “Zhoushan Branch”) pronounced on 20 March 2019 (2019 Min 72 Min Chu 149), the Xiamen Maritime Court (the “Court”) of People’s Republic of China dismissed the challenge against…

On 19 July 2019, Beijing Arbitration Commission a.k.a. Beijing International Arbitration Center (the “BAC/BIAC”) released its amended Arbitration Rules (the “Rules”) and Fee Schedule (the “Fee Schedule”), both of which will take effect on 1 September 2019.   An Overview of BAC/BIAC’s New Fee Schedule The amendments introduced many reforms to reduce the time and…

Introduction On April 2, 2019, the Supreme People’s Court (“SPC”) and the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (“HKSAR”) signed the Arrangement Concerning Mutual Assistance in Court-ordered Interim Measures in Aid of Arbitral Proceedings by the Courts of the Mainland and of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (“Arrangement”). This…

In Part I of this post I discussed how the Arrangement excluded ad-hoc arbitration and how it raised certain issues on jurisdiction of the courts. In Part 2, I discuss other aspects of the Arrangement.   Interaction between Arrangement and CICC The interaction between the Arrangement and the China International Commercial Court (“CICC”) is also…

Background Since its announcement in 2013, China has invested more than US $120 billion into the target countries along the Belt and Road Initiative (“BRI”) on infrastructure projects ranging from ports and railroads to pipelines. Central Asia will become part of nearly the entire major trade corridor identified under the BRI. Hence the BRI presents…

Introduction In international arbitration, winning an award is not the end of the story.  Instead, a favorable business outcome depends on successful enforcement of the award in the jurisdiction(s) where the opponent’s assets are situated.  Unfortunately for the winning party, the losing party may delay or even avoid enforcement by raising challenges and instigating proceedings…

After facing one of the largest protests in the city’s history on June 9, and then repeated protest and clashes with police last Wednesday, the Hong Kong government suspended efforts to pass its extradition bill. The bill would have required the city’s judges to extradite criminal suspects to Mainland China with minimal safeguards and facilitated…

Introduction In March 2019 China’s Tianjin 1st Intermediate Court (“Tianjin Court”) rendered a decision dated 4 March 2019 (2018 Jin-01-Xie-Wai-Ren No. 1), granting an application for recognition and enforcement of a foreign arbitral award rendered by a sole arbitrator under the rules of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board (“KCAB”). The decision reflects an increasing trend of…

On 18 February 2019, the Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong – Hong Kong – Macao Greater Bay Area (the “Outline”) was published. Seen to rival the city clusters formed around San Francisco, New York and Tokyo, the development of the Greater Bay Area is a collaborative initiative to transform the Pearl Delta Region of…

Introduction On 2 April 2019, the Supreme People’s Court and the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region announced the signature of the “Arrangement Concerning Mutual Assistance in Court-ordered Interim Measures in Aid of Arbitral Proceedings by the Courts of the Mainland and of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region” (“Arrangement”). This announcement as…

Introduction Parties to international commercial transactions not infrequently find themselves in disputes over whether a valid arbitration agreement exists between them or whether a court or an arbitral tribunal has the jurisdiction to hear this issue. These situations are especially perplexing because – despite the general international acceptance of the “kompetenz-kompetenz” doctrine – national laws…