Publish time: 2016-8-2
2015 marks the 20th anniversary of Beijing Arbitration Commission /Beijing International Arbitration Center (BAC/BIAC, hereinafter referred to as BAC). BAC’s new Arbitration Rules entered into force as of April 1, and the name of Beijing International Arbitration Center was officially used at the same time, symbolizing that BAC’s development has entered a new stage. In 2015, BAC reached a new high in case handling and dispute amount, and took a series of targeted measures in response to the surge of caseload and the insufficiency of staff members, so as to ensure high case-handling quality and efficiency. In 2015, BAC maintained its force in publicity and research, achieved a group of research results, and improved BAC’s brand cognition. Besides, BAC carried out reforms and improvements in such aspects as its organizational structure, personnel, work systems and performance assessment, enhanced the enthusiasm of its staff members, and made efforts to a team with great strength. Generally speaking, 2015 is the year for BAC’s rapid development and profound accumulation.
The following is the summary of BAC’s work in 2015 in four aspects: case handling, publicity, theoretical research, internal construction.
I. Case Handling
(I) Arbitration cases
1. BAC reached a new high in accepted cases and dispute amount in 2015
According to the statistics, BAC accepted a total of 2,944 cases in 2015, with an increase of 903 cases (44.2%) over 2014; the dispute amount reached 41,110 million Yuan, with an increase of 25,170 million Yuan (157.9%) over 2014.
There were 1,833 cases with a dispute amount less than 1 million Yuan whose total dispute amount reached 610 million Yuan, increased by 599 cases (48%) and 210 million Yuan than 2014 respectively; there were 810 cases with a dispute amount more than 1 million Yuan but less than 10 million Yuan whose total dispute amount reached 2,960 million Yuan, increased by 217 cases and 1,040 million Yuan than 2014 respectively; there were 246 cases with a dispute amount more than 10 million Yuan but less than 100 million Yuan whose total dispute amount reached 7,900 million Yuan, increased by 63 cases and 2,510 million Yuan than 2014 respectively; there were 55 cases with a dispute amount more than 100 million Yuan whose total dispute amount reached 29,140 million Yuan, increased by 24 cases (77%) and 21,520 million Yuan than 2014 respectively, among them, an arbitration case involved a dispute amount as high as over 10 billion Yuan and became the case involving the biggest dispute amount since BAC’s establishment.
2. With regard to case types, the number of international commercial arbitration cases remained stable, and the number of domestic cases involving the parties in other places increased slightly
In 2015, BAC continued to accept cases involving various dispute types: there were 773 disputes concerning sales contracts, accounting for 26.26% of all cases; there were 331 disputes concerning commission contracts, accounting for 11.24% of all cases; there were 315 disputes concerning contracts for construction projects, accounting for 10.7% of all cases; there were 816 disputes concerning investment & financing contracts, accounting for 27.72% of all cases; there were 153 disputes concerning lease contracts, accounting for 5.2% of all cases; there were 302 disputes concerning loan contracts, accounting for 10.26% of all cases; there were 64 disputes concerning new-type contracts in the franchise and tourism sectors, accounting for 2.17% of all cases; there were 28 disputes concerning contracts of hired work, accounting for 0.95% of all cases; there were 33 disputes concerning information networks, accounting for 1.12% of all cases; there were 50 disputes concerning technology contracts, accounting for 1.7% of all cases; there were 16 disputes concerning guarantee contracts, accounting for 0.54% of all cases; there were 26 intellectual property disputes, accounting for 0.88% of all cases; and there were 37 other disputes, accounting for 1.26% of all cases.
Besides, BAC accepted 52 international commercial arbitration cases in 2015, with an increase of 11 cases over 2014 and accounting for 1.77% of all cases. Among domestic cases, there were 1,604 ones in which at least one party was in another place, accounting for more than a half (55.46%); there were 397 ones in which both parties were in other places, with an increase of 99 cases over 2014 and accounting for 13.73%.
3. BAC maintained high rates of case conclusion and compromise as well as high case quality in 2015
BAC concluded 2,425 cases in 2015, with an increase of 670 cases (38.18%), and the average duration of cases is 91 days. Among them, 1,373 cases were concluded by arbitral awards, accounting for 56.62%; 349 cased were concluded by mediation, accounting for 14.39%; 700 cases were withdrawn by the relevant parties, accounting for 28.87% (440 cases were withdrawn before the tribunal was formed, 82% cases were withdrawn after the tribunal was formed); 3 cases were canceled by BAC, accounting for 0.12%.
None of BAC’s arbitral awards were revoked by the courts in 2015; 3 arbitral awards of BAC was refused for enforcement by the court, accounting for 0.12% of all concluded cases.
The following facts can be seen from the above data.
Firstly, there is a surge in the number of cases accepted by BAC, with increasing dispute amount.
BAC kept the increasing momentum of cases accepted by it since January, which means more and more parties prefer BAC for the resolution of commercial disputes with the rising influence and market recognition of BAC. Therefore, BAC must be well prepared both in personnel and professional knowledge. Particularly, BAC’s arbitrators should be more proactive and initiative in the management of case handling process, and strengthen the interactions with secretaries, so as to further improve the efficiency of case handling; on the other hand, they should improve their case handling capability and professionalism, so as to ensure the quality of case handling.
Secondly, the types of cases accepted by BAC generally remained stable, with a majority of cases related to investment & financing, construction projects and sales contracts.
The large range and stability of case types reflect BAC’s high market recognition and solid foundation for sustainable development.
The sharp increase in cases related to investment & financing and financial contracts reflects the changes in the arbitration market, requiring BAC to make corresponding changes in its reserve of professionals and professional knowledge.
The large increase in cases with a dispute amount less than 1 million Yuan and more than 100 million Yuan reflects the rather mediocre market recognition of BAC’s brand, which is in contrast to our goal of focusing on high-end commercial disputes.
The stable increase of cases involving foreign parties and parties in other places of China shows the inevitable development direction for BAC, requiring us to make further study on ideas and methods for our publicity to foreign countries (and other regions in China).
The largest proportion of cases involve disputes related to contracts signed in 2014 followed by those related to contracts signed in 2013, this fact reflect that there are more commercial disputes now and the cycle of disputes is getting shorter. Correspondingly, the relevant parties have higher requirements on the efficiency of case handling.
Thirdly, though BAC faced such difficulties as surging caseload and insufficient case handling personnel in 2015, it remained rather high level and efficiency of case handling through various efforts.
Let’s take the notarized service as an example, it is preliminarily estimated that the number of cases involving the notarized service in 2015 (708) is almost 2.4 times of that in 2014 (293). Theoretically speaking, the notarized service may lead to the extension of the average duration of cases, but we can see from the above data that the average duration of cases in 2015 is basically the same as that in previous years, which is sufficient to prove the effective control of case handling process and efficiency by BAC and its secretaries.
BAC’s achievements in “amount, types, quality and efficiency” benefit not only from the efforts of its arbitrators and secretaries in specific cases, but also from its good communication mechanism. One the one hand, BAC strengthened its trainings to arbitrators on procedures and substantive business, rapidly improved the familiarity and comprehension of its arbitrators to the new rules, improved the capability of its arbitrators in case handling, and enhanced the enthusiasm and initiative of its arbitrators; on the other hand, BAC adopted a new management system for case handling, ensured the communication quality and efficiency of arbitrators and secretaries through information technology, and improve the efficiency of case handling to a great extent.
At the beginning of 2015, BAC took advantage the annual discussion meeting with its arbitrators to release the Carefulness, High Efficiency and Prudence – Reiteration and Emphasis of Several Requirements on Arbitrators, reiterating the requirements on some common issues in the case handling by arbitrators, such as the file reading before hearing, the preparation of outlines for hearing, the use of various measures of hearing, the extension of time limit for hearing and the writing of arbitral awards. BAC also made explanations to all arbitrators through the office system and e-mails, emphasizing the standardization and efficiency in case handling by arbitrators and achieving certain effects. At present, certain improvement shave been make in such aspects as the extension of time limit for hearing and the writing of arbitral awards.
BAC has always take high-quality and high-level arbitral awards as the “gold-lettered signboard” for BAC’s development, while the “important key” for maintaining the “gold-lettered signboard” is arbitrators. In the following work, BAC will further strengthen and organize targeted trainings on practical techniques and skills for hearing, and further enhance the enthusiasm and initiative of its arbitrators. At the same time, BAC will pay more attention to the growth and training of its secretaries to improve their professionalism and efficiency, so that they could help arbitrators to handle arbitration cases with higher quality and efficiency.
(II) Independent mediation cases of the Mediation Center
In 2015, the independent mediation cases accepted by BAC’s Mediation Center were related to 9 types of disputes, including those concerning finance, real estate and intellectual property. BAC’s Mediation Center accepted a total of 44 cases in the whole year with a total dispute amount of 380 million Yuan, and realized revenue of 421,704 Yuan; 23 of them were cases entrusted for mediation by Beijing Higher People’s Court.
Based on the success in 2014, BAC’s Mediation Center continued to participate in the activities related to entrusted mediation organized by Beijing Higher People’s Court, so as to expand the sources of independent mediation cases. BAC gradually consolidated its cooperation with the relevant courts through good communications with them and the handling of first mediation cases entrusted by them, eliminating the obstacles of fee collection and improving the quality of case handling. The number of cases entrusted by the courts reached 23 in 2015. Next, BAC will further strengthen its cooperation with Beijing Higher People’s Court and other mediation institutions, expand the sources of cases with marketized operations under the premise of providing quality dispute resolution services, arouse the enthusiasm of various parties to participate in the independent mediation, strengthen the trainings to mediators, promote the business communication among mediators, follow international practice, and adapt to the development trends both at home and abroad.
(III) Arbitrator appointment and nomination
In 2015, a total of 359 arbitrators participated in case handling. BAC appointed arbitrators for a total of 2,879 person times, with an increase of 950 person times over 2014; among which, presiding arbitrator for 761 person times, sole arbitrator for 1,427 person times, first arbitrator for 245 person times, second arbitrator for 448 person times.
Among the 769 cases for ordinary procedure in which a tribunal was formed, claimants nominated arbitrators in 527 cases (68.5%) and respondents nominated arbitrators in 325 cases (42.3%).
The increase of these proportions reflects the general recognition of the fairness, professionalism and services of BAC’s arbitrators by the relevant parties.
BAC is exploring a set of scientific and systematic mechanisms for arbitrator appointment. When matching arbitrators with cases, we should not only consider the arbitrators’ professional fields, case handling experience and accumulated case amount, but also pay attention to the proper mix of senior and new arbitrators, so as to bring success to the echelon construction of the arbitrator team, generally build an well-structured arbitrator team with seniors ones advising new ones and all arbitrators helping each other, and ensure that the most suitable arbitrators are assigned to all cases as far as possible.
(IV) BAC’s revenue and expenditure in 2015
In 2015, BAC had revenue of 236.8 million Yuan, and paid taxes of 51,113,200 Yuan. Till the end of 2015, BAC has accumulated paid taxes of 222.5 million Yuan, 49.91 times of the fiscal allocation upon its establishment.
II. Publicity and Trainings
BAC began to implement its new Arbitration Rules and officially use the name of “Beijing International Arbitration Center” on April 1, 2015, coinciding with the 20th anniversary of the promulgation of the Arbitration Law of the People’s Republic of China and the 10th anniversary of BAC’s establishment. BAC made an overall planning and enabled its publicity and trainings to give prominence to key points, adopt multiple forms, cover a large audience and produce profound influence in 2015. Apart from the continuation of traditional forms including seminars, conferences, visits and advertisements, BAC made an all-round publicity of boutique programs with its own characteristics in combination with the celebration of its 20th anniversary, so as to ensure the profundity of publicity and make a comprehensive display of the good image of BAC and China’s arbitration. According to the preliminary statistics, BAC organized and participated in more than 100 publicity activities including various conferences, visits and advertisements in 2015, covering audiences of over 10,000 person times.
(I) BAC took the celebration of its 20th anniversary as an opportunity and organized a series of featured activities including the first Arbitration Week, achieving brilliant publicity effect
1. BAC specially planned the Arbitration Week in celebration of its 20th anniversary
In order to completely sort out and summarize BAC’s development concepts and practical experience, BAC adopted the form of Arbitration Week for the first time to celebrate its 20th anniversary.
On September 21, 2015, BAC hosted the “Seventh Session of China Arbitration Forum – Seminar on the Structural Reform of China’s Arbitration & 20th Anniversary of the Arbitration Law”. The seminar discussed the institutional mode for the structural reform of China’s arbitration which not only accord to China’s characteristics but also promote the long-term development of arbitration in China, attracting more than 100 participants including the leaders concerned about the structural reform of public institutions in China, experts, scholars, representatives from various arbitration institutions and other legal professionals.
On September 22, 2015, BAC hosted a summit in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Arbitration Law themed “Creation of Credibility: Challenges and Opportunities for China’s Arbitration in the New Era”. The summit included the main forum and two sub-forums: the main forum made a macroscopic discussion on the development experience and institutional advantages of arbitration; the two sub-forums respectively entered on the discussion on “improving the competitiveness of arbitration institutions” and the discussion on “litigious arbitration”. The summit attracted more than 100 participants in the arbitration circle including representatives from famous arbitration institutions both at home and abroad, persons in charge of judicial organs, famous scholars and experts of arbitration practice.
From September 23 to 30, 2015, BAC held an 8-day conference to release the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview (2015). For the first time, BAC released the report in ten topics covering 11 professional fields: arbitration and mediation, finance, international trade, intellectual property, energy, film and television, investment, general aviation, construction projects, real estate. The conference attracted hundreds of participants in the arbitration circle including representatives from famous arbitration institutions both at home and abroad, persons in charge of judicial organs, famous scholars and experts of arbitration practice. The event made a sufficient display of BAC’s comprehensive strength and development results in various fields in its history of 20 years to the whole industry from multiple perspectives, achieving excellent effects.
2. BAC specially planned featured salons in various professional fields in celebration of its 20th anniversary
On April 30, 2015, BAC hosted the Summit on the Practice and Outlook of Arbitration Related to Construction Projects and the First Arbitrators Salon in Celebration of BAC’s 20th Anniversary. The summit invited such guests as Ms. GUAN Li, Judge of the 1st Civil Adjudication Tribunal of the Supreme People’s Court, BAC’s arbitrator Mr. FENG Zhixiang, Ms. QIN Yuxiu, BAC’s arbitrator and Deputy General Counsel & General Manager of Legal Affairs Department of CSCEC, and Mr. ZHANG Shixing, partner of Beijing Yingjian Law Firm, and was presided over by Mr. ZHAO Hang, BAC’s arbitrator and Senior Counselor of Beijing Commerce & Finance Law Offices. The summit was attended by more than 120 participants including BAC’s arbitrators and professionals in the field of construction projects.
On June 25, 2015, BAC hosted the Summit on the Practice and Outlook of Financial Arbitration and the Second Arbitrators Salon in Celebration of BAC’s 20th Anniversary. The summit attracted more than 140 participants from the financial and legal circles, and made an all-round discussion on frontier issues related to the commercial dispute resolution in the finance sector.
On August 27, 2015, BAC hosted the Summit on the Practice and Outlook of Intellectual Property Arbitration and the Third Arbitrators Salon in Celebration of BAC’s 20th Anniversary. The summit attracted nearly 100 participants from the intellectual property and legal circles.
On September 24, 2015, BAC joined hand with the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC) in organizing the mock international arbitration event titled “Watch the Fun & See the Road” by specially inviting the Des Voeux Chambers team led by Ms. Teresa CHENG SC and consisted of 4 SCs, 8 barristers and 7 solicitors. This event is a follow-up to the event “Model Play of International Arbitration” jointly hosted by BAC and the HKIAC last year, where Hong Kong lawyers shared their experience of international arbitration with their colleagues in the Chinese Mainland. Over 200 participants from large foreign-funded enterprises, Chinese SOEs, renowned law firms, arbitration institutions and higher education institutions attended the event.
3. BAC initiated the amendment to the Constitution of Beijing Arbitration Commission in celebration of its 20th anniversary
To commemorate its 20th anniversary, BAC initiated the amendment to the Constitution of Beijing Arbitration Commission. The amendment is required by BAC’s development and is made in consideration of BAC’s current situation and changes: firstly, BAC has an additional name “Beijing International Arbitration Center” with the approval of the relevant authority, which should be clarified in the Constitution; secondly, BAC has made some useful explorations in arbitration systems and practices based on the principles of independence and fairness stipulated by the Arbitration Law, which has improved BAC’s credibility, won the universal recognition of the legal circle and should be included in the Constitution; thirdly, BAC is facing new challenges and opportunities with the deepening development and reform of China’s arbitration, so it needs to make forward-looking provisions on further improving its governance structure and systems in accordance with the general trend by referring to the experience of arbitration institutions both at home and abroad; fourthly, BAC needs to modify some outdated expressions and wording. At present, BAC has completed the framework and main contents of its new Constitution and has extensively solicited opinions. Next, BAC will make the amendment according to the relevant opinions and suggestions, and the amended Constitution will be submitted to the Committee for deliberation in the middle of 2016.
On October 17, 2015, Secretary of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee GUO Jinlong and Major of Beijing WANG Anshun made a survey at BAC. Mr. GUO listened to BAC’s introduction and report, was pleased at BAC’s performances in 20 years, and expressed his hope that BAC could keep its “gold-letter signboard” and become a new face of Beijing. The visit of Mr. GUO and Mr. WANG arouse the extensive attention of all social walks to arbitration and to BAC.
(II) A series of summit forums with international influence under the guideline of “Going out and Bringing in”
1. “Going out” – displaying the image of China’s arbitration to the world
(1) BAC organized the Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China respectively in London and Cologne, and made the global release of the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview for the third time
From July 5 to 11, 2015, BAC respectively organized the 2015 London Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China and the 2015 Cologne Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China. Taking advantage of the release of the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview (2015) compiled by BAC, the summits attracted a lot of professionals from China, the UK and other countries and regions including renowned scholars in famous higher education institutions, Queen’s Counsels and senior partners of top law firms both at home and abroad, who carried out all-round and in-depth discussions on multiple fields of China’s commercial dispute resolution.
The summits covered topics of dispute resolution in eight professional fields including arbitration and mediation, energy, construction projects, international trade, finance, real estate investment and intellectual property. The summits attracted the extensive attention of experts, scholars and lawyers in the international arbitration circle, and the BAC delegation consisting of 11 compilers of the Annual Review and Preview (SONG Lianbin, CHEN Xijia, TAN Jinghui, DENG Yongquan, ZHANG Libin, BAO Zhi, TAO Xiuming, XIE Guanbin, XU Bo, DONG Nianqing and ZHANG Qihuai) had splendid dialogues and communication with their international colleagues.
Mr. William Blair, Judge of the High Court of England and Wales, commented that “this summit includes detailed and profound discussions on practical and extensive topics, and the report makes an authentic and minute display of the progress and results of arbitration’s development in China based on solid data”. Mr. Thomas Weimann, President of the Chinese European Legal Association, commented that “this summit promotes the mutual understanding of China and Germany on the status quo of dispute resolution in each other, and opens a new era for the exchange of both countries on legal practice.”
(2) BAC attended the 6th Greater China Arbitration Forum, and made an all-round introduction of its new Arbitration Rules
On May 6, 2015, BAC attended the 6th Greater China Arbitration Forum as a founding member of the forum. On the forum hosted by the Hong Kong Institute of Arbitrators, Secretary-General LIN Zhiwei made a keynote speech on behalf of BAC in the “Arbitration Development – Legislation, Rules, Best Practice and Institutional Development” section. In his speech themed “Active Participation in Competition and Improvement of Internationalized Rules”, Mr. LIN made a detailed introduction of the background, contents and key points about the amendment to BAC’s Arbitration Rules, and shared BAC’s experience of brainstorming, learning from good examples and transparency in the amendment process with the audience. The forum attracted more than 100 participants of the arbitration circle in the Greater China Region including the Chinese Mainland, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
(3) BAC attended the Hong Kong Arbitration Summit as a platinum sponsor, and carried out extensive exchanges with the international arbitration circle
From May 11 to 15, 2015, BAC dispatched a delegation led by Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong to attend the Hong Kong Arbitration Summit as a platinum sponsor. Themed with “Bridging Culture, Connecting Future”, the summit aimed at gathering leading figures in the international dispute resolution field and elites from all circles to engage in high-end and in-depth dialogues on the new trend of international dispute resolution field triggered by the current development of international trade, and attracted the great attention of the international arbitration circle. BAC made an on-site publicity of itself and distributed more than 1,000 copies of materials, including the English version of the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview (2015) as well as BAC’s new Arbitration Rules and publicity leaflets, to more than 300 experts of international arbitration, senior judges, famous lawyers and scholars from more than 10 countries and regions. Besides, BAC visited the Department of Justice, Hong Kong S.A.R. and 5 international law firms, and exchanged experience with them.
(4) BAC attended the International Arbitration Conference in the 2015 Sydney Arbitration Week, and made an all-round introduction of the development of dispute resolution in China
On November 24, 2015, the 3rd International Arbitration Conference was jointly held by the Australian Law Commission, the Australian International Arbitration Center and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Australia Branch in Sydney. With the theme of “Challenges and Opportunities for Commercial Arbitration in the Next Century”, the conference is an important part of the 2015 Sydney Arbitration Week. As the only invited arbitration institution in the Chinese Mainland, BAC dispatched a delegation led by Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong to participate in the conference on invitation. Mr. Chen made a keynote speech and had profound exchanges with other participants.
2. “Bringing in” – creating a new face of Beijing
On March 18, 2015, BAC hosted the 6th In-house Counsel Forum & Celebration of BAC’s 20th Anniversary, HKIAC’s Honorary Chairman Philip YANG made a speech themed “Interpretation, Damages and Remedies in Anglo-American Contract Law – From the Perspective of International Business Practice”. The forum attracted nearly 180 participants including legal personnel of large enterprises, partners of renowned law firms, senior scholars both at home and abroad, BAC’s arbitrators and other persons concerned about the arbitration cause. 165 copies of the new book Construction of Contract by Mr. Philip YANG were distributed in the forum.
On May 29, 2015, the ICC-BAC International Forum jointly organized by BAC and The ICC International Court of Arbitration was grandly held in BAC’s brand new International Conference Hall. With the theme of “Demystifying International Arbitration for Chinese Parties”, the forum attracted more than 100 experts and amateurs in the international arbitration circle.
On July 3, 2015, BAC successfully held the seminar on “Practice and Reflection of ‘Going-out Enterprises’”. The seminar specially invited Mr. CHEN Rongchuan, lifelong honorary professor of the National Taipei University and Secretary-General of the Taiwan Legal Association, to be the keynote speaker, and carried out discussions on the application of private international law in foreign-related legal relations concerning “going-out enterprises”. The seminar attracted nearly 100 participants including BAC’s arbitrators and professionals from all social walks.
On August 4, 2015, the summit on Development Direction and International Experience of In-house Counsels jointly organized by the Corporate Legal Affairs Management Research Center and BAC was grandly held at BAC. The summit focused on the two topics of “In-house Counsel and Corporate Lawyer System” and “Latest Practice of Compliance Management”, and attracted more than 150 general counsels and persons in charge of legal affairs department from 120 enterprises at home and abroad including China Telecom, China Eastern Airlines, CECEP, China Coal, China Investment, PICC, Alibaba, Microsoft and Amazon.
On August 18, 2015, a delegation led by Secretary of Justice YUEN Kwok-Keung of the Hong Kong S.A.R. visited BAC. BAC’s Secretary-General LIN Zhiwei and Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong warmly welcomed the delegation, introduced BAC’s explorations and efforts in promoting the arbitration cause of the Chinese Mainland and even of the world, and mentioned about the friendly cooperation and communication between BAC and Hong Kong arbitration circle, lawyers and in-house counsels for years. Mr. YUEN highly praised the increasing influence of BAC in the international arbitration circle in recent years, and expressed the willingness to make further communication with BAC and join hands with BAC in promoting the development of international arbitration.
(III) Under the guideline of extensive participation, BAC dispatched delegations to participate in large-scale and influential events in the arbitration circle
1. On January 10, 2015, a BAC delegation consisting of Secretary-General LIN Zhiwei, Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong, Deputy Chief ZHANG Haoliang of No. 3 Business Division and case-handling secretary WANG Ruihua attended the 2014 China Annual Conference of In-house Counsels (Beijing) with the theme of “Building A Country Ruled by Law, Rebuilding the Silk Road”. The conference was participated by the relevant leaders of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission and the Ministry of Justice, general counsels of nearly 300 famous large enterprises both at home and abroad, arbitrators of arbitration institutions, renowned law experts, scholars and partners of top law firms. Mr. LIN Zhiwei made his comments in the dispute resolution section, and Mr. CHEN Fuyong presided over the private session.
2. On February 10, 2015, the “Fourth Annual Conference of Internet-related Legal Workers in Beijing” jointly organized by the ISC Mediation Center and BAC was successfully held, Secretary-General LIN Zhiwei, Division Chief JIANG Qiuju and WANG Xiaoxi attended the conference.
3. From March 19 to 21, 2015, Division Chief JIANG Qiuju and LIU Yang attended “The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Centenary Celebration” held in Hong Kong.
4. On March 26, 2015, Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong, Deputy Division Chief ZHANG Haoliang and XU Jie attended the In-house Counsel Forum, and Mr. CHEN Fuyong delivered a speech. More than 160 copies of BAC’s new Arbitration Rules, the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview (2014), the Commercial Law Dictionary and other materials were distributed to participants of the forum, achieving good publicity effects.
5. In the evening of April 23, 2015, Secretary-General LIN Zhiwei, Deputy Division Chief ZHANG Haoliang and ZHANG Ran attended the Award Ceremony of ALB China Law Awards. Mr. LIN Zhiwei acted as an award presenter and BAC offered sponsorship and publicity.
6. On May 13, 2015, Division Chief DING Jianyong attended the meeting on preparations for the “Seminar on Authentication Institutions” to be jointly held by Beijing Higher People’s Court, the Engineering Cost Division of Beijing Municipal Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and BAC, which will focusing on regulating the misconducts of authentication institutions in the judicial and arbitration process.
7. In the afternoon of May 15, 2015, Division Chief JIANG Qiuju attended the Second Conference on Protection of Rights at the China Television Artists Association. On the meeting, Ms. JIANG introduced the approaches for resolution and compensation of infringement in disputes related to film & TV products, made in-depth communication with other participants, and got more understanding of the background of film & TV contracts and the inside of film & TV industry.
8. On June 5, 2015, Deputy Secretary-General CHEN Fuyong attended the “Seminar on Establishing the China-Africa Strict Dispute Resolution Mechanism” organized by the China Law Society, and signed the “Beijing Consensus on Establishing the China-Africa Joint Dispute Resolution Mechanism”. It is the first time for BAC to attend the seminar, and the seminar offered a lot of enlightenments to BAC’s publicity work: apart from European countries, BAC can actively promote its publicity in South Africa, Nigeria and Mauritius by gradually doing more detailed work.
9. On November 25, 2015, a BAC delegation consisting of Division Chief JIANG Qiuju and case-handling secretaries LIN Chenxi and MA Xiaoxiao attended the Beijing 2015 In-house Legal Summit. The summit was hosted by the Asian Legal Business (“ALB”) with BAC’s support. The speakers of the summit, including persons in charge of legal affairs in large enterprises both at home and abroad, renowned Chinese scholars and partners of famous law firms, made communication and discussion on such topics as securities compliance, labor disputes in transnational corporations, anti-commercial bribery, anti-monopoly, M&A, foreign investment legislation and dispute resolution.
(IV) Targeted trainings on dispute resolution based on professional background
1. BAC strengthened its cooperation with lawyers associations, and made its trainings to lawyers more systematic and routinized
(1) BAC continued its trainings to lawyers in cooperation with lawyer associations. In 2015, BAC continued to perform its Framework Cooperation Agreement with Chaoyang District Lawyers Association and Haidian District Lawyers Association, and continued the cooperation with them by means of organizing a series of trainings to lawyers on commercial arbitration and conveying correct concepts of commercial arbitration to lawyers. In 2015, BAC organized the training on “Paraphrasing and Interpreting BAC’s New Rules”, the third training class of Sunflower Development Program for female lawyers in Beijing, the mock arbitration tribunal in the “100 Law Firms, 100 Vehicles and 1,000 Trainings” Project and other activities; these trainings offered pertinent and practical contents, advocated positive arbitration concepts, and won the appraise of participating lawyers.
(2) BAC continued its trainings on mock arbitration practice to applicants for lawyer’s qualification in Beijing. In 2015, BAC organized 7 trainings on arbitration practice, developed cases in 4 different professional fields, and trained nearly 1,200 new lawyers.
2. BAC continued its cooperation with key higher education institutions, and made them the frontline for the publicity of arbitration
(1) BAC held the “Seminar on Teaching Reform of Commercial Arbitration in Higher Education Institutions & Award Ceremony of the 2nd BAC Sup Article Contest”. BAC organized the 3rd “BAC Cup” national article contest on commercial arbitration, invited 19 experts from China Law Society, Peking University (PKU), Tsinghua University (THU), Remin University of China (RUC), China University of Political Science and Law (CUPL), University of International Business and Economics (UIBE), Foreign Affairs University and Shanghai University to form the Review Group. The Review Group made a careful assessment of all articles, and selected 1 article for the First Prize, 2 articles for the Second Prize, 3 articles for the Third Prize and 6 articles for the Excellent Prize after the preliminary examination, reexamination and oral defense.
(2) BAC sponsored the 12th CUPL Young Scholar Essay Contest, offering strong support to students’ academic and scientific research activities, attracting the students’ attention to dispute resolution, urging the students to participate in academic research, improving the students’ recognition of arbitration and BAC, and enhancing the students’ interest in arbitration.
(3) BAC offered courses on dispute resolution in higher education institutions. In 2015, BAC offered the course on China’s arbitration law in English to overseas students of the Master of Laws Program in Chinese Law in the Peking University Law School (CHEN Fuyong as the lecturer), offered the summer course on arbitration law to the Department of Law, University of Science and Technology Beijing (CHEN Fuyong and JIANG Qiuju as the lecturers), and offered the course on legal negotiation to students of Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (XU Jie and ZHANG Ran as the lecturers). Besides, BAC continued to offer the course on corporate case management in the CUPL Business School (CHEN Fuyong as the lecturer).
(4) BAC received the visits of students from higher education institutions both at home and abroad. In 2015, BAC received more than 100 students from BPP University Law School, PKU, Tsinghua University, CUPL, RUC and UIBE.
(V) BAC adopted multiple manners to enhance its influence with the mainstream media as major channels of publicity
In 2015, BAC maintained a good cooperation relationship with such media as the ACC Docket, the IBA Global Insight, the Commercial Law, the Faren Magazine, the Corporate Legal Affairs, the InHouse Community (Handbook), the Inter-Pacific Bar Association (IPBA), the Asian Dispute Review (ADR), the Asian Legal Business (ALB), the Global Arbitration Review (GAR) and the China Law, organized its staff members and arbitrators to publish 14 articles and 22 advertisements focusing on its new arbitration rules in these media, and achieved extensive publicity effects.
It’s worth mentioning that the survey of Secretary of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee GUO Jinlong and Major of Beijing WANG Anshun at BAC in October 2015 was broadly reported by BTV, the Beijing Daily, the Beijing Evening News, www.people.com.cn and www.xinhuanet.com. Besides, the Phoenix Satellite Television produced and broadcasted two special short films titled “China Perspective: Arbitration is A Dispute Resolution Approach beyond Litigation” and “China Perspective: Arbitration Level is An Important Indicator of Investment Environment”, offering strong promotion to the publicity of BAC and commercial arbitration.
After BAC put forward the goal of building itself into a research center on diversified dispute resolution, it has continuously increased the input of manpower and material resources in theoretical and practical researches, actively invited and organized its arbitrators and staff members to carry out the theoretical research on dispute resolution, energetically brought into play the academic research capability and influences of its arbitrators, stimulated the passion of its staff members for research, and vigorously formed a knowledge system of diversified dispute resolution with arbitration at the core. As 2015 saw a surge in BAC’s caseload, BAC was still setting the foundation for better knowledge management and research in 2015 due to limited energy in this field; however, BAC generally maintained the progress and profoundness of its research and achieved a series of research results.
1. BAC kept improving research brands within its own characteristics and achieving research results
BAC kept improving its existing research brands, and kept promoting its research platforms including the BAC Scientific Research Fund, the BAC Book Collections, the BAC Translation Series and the Beijing Arbitration Quarterly. BAC’s research results are as follows: 12 programs in the first batch of the BAC Scientific Research Fund for 2013 (including 8 excellent programs and 4 qualified ones) was concluded and passed the strict review by experts of the fund’s Review Group; the Solutions for Difficulty Legal Issues in Construction Projects (by TAN Jinghui) was included in the BAC Book Collections; the Industrialization Road of Mediation: 30 Top Mediators Tell You How to Be Successful in the Mediation Industry (temporary name, translated by XU Jie) was included in the BAC Translation Series; No. 91-94 Issues of the Beijing Arbitration Quarterly were published; the Beijing Arbitration Quarterly was included in www.classiclaw.com; besides, BAC published the Progress Report on the Rule of Law in Beijing (2015) and the Progress Report on Social Governance in Beijing (2014-2015) in cooperation with the Beijing Academy of Social Sciences and the Beijing Law Society respectively.
2. BAC strengthen the collection of excellent arbitral awards, and will successively publish the Interpretation of Commercial Arbitral Awards which consists of a series of books
The Interpretation of Excellent Arbitral Awards on Equity Transfer in China has been delivered to the Commercial Press for proofreading, and its Chinese version will be published soon. The book is the first of a series of books on the analysis of commercial arbitral awards specially planned by BAC, including the analysis of 10 experts, scholars and BAC’s arbitrators (DENG Feng, LIU Junhai, LIU Kaixiang, LIU Yi, LIU Yan, SU Haopeng, TANG Xin, XU Defeng, YE Lin, ZHU Ciyun). Its English version will be released overseas later. BAC is further updating and processing the collection of other arbitral awards such as the Excellent Arbitral Awards Selection in various special fields, the Interim Awards Collection and the Selection of Arbitral Awards without Arbitrator’s Signature, and will select and assemble excellent arbitral awards in various special fields, so as to form new research brands with BAC’s characteristics.
3. BAC’s staff members actively carried out researches by themselves or in cooperation with other institutions
In 2015, BAC’s staff members actively carried out the research on dispute resolution in spite of the heavy caseload, and successively published 8 articles in various public publications, including but not limited to: Twenty Years of China’s Arbitration: Retrospect of the Past, Outlook of the Future (CHEN Fuyong), Study on the Principle of “Ne Bis In Idem” in Arbitration and Mediation – Taking the Arbitration Case of A Real Estate Development Company vs. An Investment Group as Analysis Sample (ZHANG Jiechao), Growth in China’s Outbound Investment Brings Chances and Challenges (XU Jie), Mediation Center in Development: Increase of Case Sources and Standardization of Procedures (XU Jie), Application of the Law of the Application of Law for Foreign-related Civil Relations of the People’s Republic of China in Commercial Arbitration (LU Yang), Good Evidence Management in Construction Projects for the Avoidance of Disputes (LIN Xiaolu), Study on Innovative Mechanisms of Commercial Dispute Arbitration in Beijing (YANG Jinyan, ZHANG Haoliang, WANG Ruihua), Third-party Financing and Investor’s Self-regulation in International Arbitration (ZHANG Xi). Besides, BAC’s staff members also participated in the compilation and translation of some professional works, including: Chinese Arbitration Law (LexisNexis 2015, CHEN Fuyong is responsible for compiling the chapter of “The Arbitration Proceeding”), International Arbitration: Law and Practice (2015 version of the Commercial Press, CHEN Fuyong is responsible for translating the chapter of “Arbitration between Investors and Nations and between Two Nations”).
4. BAC enhanced the resource support in forms of books and data, and realized the diversification of research methods
BAC has always paid attention to the construction of its library, and it now has 12 kinds of published periodicals (paper mold), 2,976 Chinese books, 545 English books, and 106 books donated by arbitrators. BAC’s collection includes works on arbitration theories and practices, diversified dispute resolution theories and practices and classical civil and commercial theories related to multiple fields including investment & financing, energy, environmental protection, international trade, construction projects, real estate, intellectual property, franchise and leasing. BAC renewed the subscription of 6 domestic and foreign databases including www.cnki.net, www.pkulaw.cn, Kluwer Arbitration, www.wkinfo.com.cn, Global Arbitration Review, www.cnarb.com. BAC is now digitalizing and electronizing its library, so as to construct a small-size professional library both for its arbitrators and for its staff members.
At present, BAC has primarily formed its research brands, system and approaches, realized rapid development, and achieved a certain amount of research results. At the same time, BAC is facing the practical problem of how to stimulate the enthusiasm of its arbitrators and staff members in research with their limited energy, how to attract and select excellent research topics and how to carry out systematic, graded and quality research in spite of the heavy caseload. Next, BAC will think over how to overcome these problems gradually, and accumulate its experience in overcoming difficulties.
IV. Internal Construction
(I) BAC began to use its new case-handling system, officially implemented the system of arbitrator’s electronic signature, and improved the level of information technology in case handling
On January 4, 2015, BAC’s new case-handling system was put into trial operation. 86.5% of its arbitrators authorized and produced their electronic signatures. After the practical use of nearly one year, the various functions of the case-handling system have been gradually improved, and the arbitrators’ efficiency of case handling by using the system has been further enhanced.
(II) BAC completed the total fitment of its venues for office and hearings, and provided its clients with first-class modern facilities
After the fitment and added the signboard of “Beijing International Arbitration Center”, BAC’s venues are equipped with modern communication devices and complete facilities, create an internationalized environment for office and hearings, provide a pattern of comfort with modern and humanistic natures, and is able to offer all-round, internationalized and first-class services to its clients.
(III) BAC improved its organizational construction, set up professional posts, explored the mechanisms for cultivating and maintaining talents, and promoted the healthy development of its office workers
(IV) BAC completed the reform of its personnel performance appraisal system, and explored the compensation system conforming to the development of market economy
(V) BAC standardized its internal normative systems, and compiled some normative documents such as the Employee Manual and the Handbook for Case Handling based on the extensive solicitation of opinions
V. Existing Problems in 2015
In 2015, BAC’s faced a surge in arbitration caseload and a certain extent of staff turnover, and generally realized its work plan formulated at the year beginning by overcoming various difficulties with the hard work of all its staff members, ensuring the quality and efficiency of case handling at the same time. We also noticed the following improvements to be made:
(I) BAC needs to further improve its quality and efficiency of handling arbitration and mediation cases
Due to the current economic situation and the outlook on development of arbitration cause, commercial disputes will occur frequently in a long term to come. BAC and its arbitrators are facing some urgent problems such as how to maintain the arbitration’s advantages of professionalism and high efficiency, how to enhance the quality and level of case handling, how to improve the efficiency of case handling under the premise of a surging caseload. Though BAC organized some practical trainings for arbitrators in 2015, restated its requirements on the standardization and efficiency of case handling, and achieved some effects, there is still some room for BAC to improve its quality and efficiency of case handling.
(II) BAC needs to further strengthen the innovativeness and pertinence of its publicity
Through comprehensively sorting out BAC’s publicity of its various brands in 2015, we could find some common defects. Firstly, the defect in direction: lack of prominence in publicity emphases and features, lack of planning in implementation, lack of profoundness in the content of activities, and lack of pertinence in the choice of activities. Secondly, the defect in mechanism: insufficient allocation of resources and unclear division of work. Thirdly, the defect in performance: no assessment of publicity effects. Next, it is necessary for BAC to make an in-depth analysis of these defects and find effective solutions.
(III) BAC needs to further enhance the systematicness and profoundness of its research
Through sorting out BAC’s various researches in 2015, we could see the phenomena of insufficient energy, slow progress, lack of profoundness and systematicness in research though BAC achieved some results in its existing platforms such as the BAC Scientific Research Fund, the Beijing Arbitration Quarterly and the Arbitral Awards Selection despite of the in heavy caseload. Next, it is necessary to make a comprehensive consolidation and layout of BAC’s research and knowledge management work, so as to improve its research level.
VI. Work in 2016
(I) To complete the amendment to BAC’s Constitution
Through the amendment to its Constitution, BAC will further practice the spirit of the Arbitration Law, will adhere to its Committee’s core values of independence, fairness, professionalism and high efficiency, will improve its governance structure, and will ensure its sustainable and healthy development, so as to provide the institutional guarantee for enhancing BAC’s credibility and international competitive force and realizing BAC’s development strategy of internationalization and diversification.
(II) To improve the case-handling level of BAC’s arbitrators, and to further enhance the quality and efficiency of handling arbitration cases
With regard to the efficiency of case handling, on the one hand, BAC will strengthen the business trainings for arbitrators and the exchange among arbitrators by relying on arbitrators’ salons, and will further organize systematic and targeted trainings for improving arbitrators’ hearing skills and practical techniques, so as to enhance arbitrators’ enthusiasm and initiative. On the other hand, BAC will bring into full play such functions as information recording and case-handling reminder of the case-handling information systems, and will strengthen the communication between secretaries and arbitration tribunals on procedures, so as to enhance the efficiency of case handling.
With regard to the quality of case handling, BAC will strengthen the services to various professional arbitrators’ salons, and will make them the platforms for arbitrators’ professional research and communication, so as to urge arbitrators to keep improving their professional level. At the same time, BAC will make such professional salons windows for its publicity.
(III) To carry out targeted publicity according to different domestic and overseas demands
Domestically, BAC will continue the discussion on the relevant professional fields of the arbitration practice, and will develop publicity and training courses for different target groups including legal researchers and students in higher education institutions, in-house counsels and lawyers, so as to carry out the targeted publicity. For example, BAC will continue the professional trainings for lawyers in cooperation with the Chaoyang District Lawyers Association and Haidian District Lawyers Association, the mock arbitration events in cooperation with the CUPL, and the courses on arbitration practice in the PKU, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the CUPL.
Internationally, BAC will take the release of the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview as the thread, let out the China’s voice in the world, actively participate in international arbitration events, so as to display the image of BAC and China’s arbitration. In 2016, BAC will release the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview at Frankfurt, the Netherlands and Hague, and will sponsor ICCA’s international arbitration events.
(IV) To keep improving the research platforms, to enhance the profoundness of research, and to form a set of organic knowledge management systems
Firstly, BAC will stimulate the enthusiasm of its arbitrators and staff members to carry out cutting-edge researches on practices and theories related to hot legal issues in international arbitration with practical significance, and to enhance the profoundness and sensitivity of their researches, so as to form BAC’s knowledge system. For example, the fundamental researches on dispute resolution related to enterprises’ economic and trade activities in the relevant countries involved in the “One Belt, One Road” Initiative, and one uniform standards for commercial dispute resolution in the integrated development of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei.
Secondly, BAC will strengthen the solidification of its research results. Based on its existing research system and platforms, BAC will enhance the extensiveness and profoundness of its researches, input more manpower and material resources, take advantage of its research platforms including the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China: An Annual Review and Preview, the Beijing Arbitration Quarterly, the BAC Translation Series, the BAC Book Collections, the Interpretation of Commercial Arbitral Awards, the Excellent Arbitral Awards Selection and the BAC Scientific Research Fund, timely sort out and transfer its research results such as the arbitrators’ salons and the programs financed by the BAC Scientific Research Fund, and improve the utilization rate of its library collection.
Thirdly, BAC will enhance the application of its research results. BAC will bring into full play the role of its network platform and media platform, so as to transfer its research results into its high-end brands of professional dispute resolution.
(V) To strengthen its internal construction, and to improve its service level in an all-round manner
In terms of institutional building, BAC will further establish and improve its corporate governance structure, and will adopt a management system with effective balance of decision-making, execution and supervision.
Firstly, BAC will complete the echelon formation of its talent team with clear layers and orderly escalation according to its research on human resources, explore the development and cultivation of talents on professional posts, and reform and perfect the performance and compensation systems, so as to greatly enhance the enthusiasm and initiative of its staff members.
Secondly, BAC will improve its talent training system, strengthen the systematic induction training on new secretaries, carry out trainings on professional skills to its staff members in different age groups, organize the communication on business experience, and promote the knowledge sharing.
Thirdly, BAC will enhance its information construction and strengthen its information disclosure. At the same time of continuously improving various functions of its case-handling system, BAC will provide its clients with more information for their participation and supervision of the case-handling process through the Internet and mobile Internet platforms, offer more convenient case-handling procedures to its arbitrators, and share its arbitration research data with professionals in the same industry.