Beijing Arbitration Commission

2019 Kuala Lumpur Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China Successfully Held

Publish time: 2019-10-30   Contributor:Xi Zhang

On October 17, 2019, the 2019 Kuala Lumpur Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China (the “Kuala Lumpur Summit”) jointly hosted by the Beijing Arbitration Commission / Beijing International Arbitration Center (the “BAC”) and the Asian International Arbitration Centre (the “AIAC”) and was successfully held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This is the first time the BAC holds such event in Malaysia. More than 100 professionals from Malaysia, Singapore, India, Australia and the UK and representatives of a number of Chinese enterprises subsidiaries registered in Malaysia have attended the event, where they had in-depth discussion and exchanges on China-Malaysia commercial disputes resolution practice in areas of investment, finance, intellectual property, construction and international trade.

The Kuala Lumpur Summit

The audience

The Kuala Lumpur Summit was moderated by Mr. Leonard Loh, Director of AIAC Business Development Dept. On behalf of Mr. Vinayak Pradhan, President of the AIAC, Ms. Tatiana Polevshchikova, Deputy Director of AIAC Legal Affairs Dept., delivered an opening address. Ms. Polevshchikova said that the BAC has held the Commercial Dispute Resolution in China roadshows in major international arbitration hubs such as London, Paris, Cologne, The Hague, Hong Kong, Vienna, Toronto and New York ever since 2013, and thereby built a qualified platform for foreign arbitration practitioners to learn about Chinese commercial dispute resolution practice and development and have exchanges and communication with their Chinese partners. As the BAC’s long-standing partner, the AIAC was pleased to host the Kuala Lumpur Summit jointly with the BAC in Malaysia, and it was expected that this event could further promote the cooperation between the two institutions.

Mr. Leonard Loh

Ms. Tatiana Polevshchikova

In his opening address, Dr. Chen Fuyong, Deputy Secretary General of the BAC, said that the BAC and the AIAC had a long-standing and well-established partnership. In 2017, the BAC launched the Belt and Road Arbitration Program jointly with the AIAC and the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (CRCICA), and the AIAC has also provided support to the BAC Commercial Dispute Resolution in China roadshows in Europe. Dr. Chen pointed out that the Chinese dispute resolution market has embraced huge reforms during the past two decades. On the one hand, the BAC had an ever-growing caseload year by year. On the other hand, Chinese parties have increasing requirements for international commercial arbitration. Under this background, the BAC organized the Annual Report of Commercial Dispute Resolution in China and hold roadshows overseas thereon, with purpose of establishing a platform for legal professionals, both from China and abroad, to have exchanges with each other and build mutual understanding and trust, so as to promote the diversified dispute resolution development.

Dr. Chen Fuyong

As a specially invited guest, Tan Sri James Foong Cheng Yuen, Former Malaysian Federal Court Judge, was present at the Kuala Lumpur Summit and delivered a keynote speech. He spoke highly of the BAC efforts in organizing the Annual Report of Commercial Dispute Resolution in China and the roadshows. He said that the BAC, as a leading Chinese dispute resolution institution, is willing to build an exchange platform for Chinese and foreign legal professionals, to share its experience and to listen to different voices while providing parties with qualified and efficient dispute resolution services, which is indeed worthy of praise. As a retired judge, he believed that the diversified dispute resolution industry could not well develop without support from the judiciary system, and judicial courts should keep positive communication and exchanges with diversified dispute resolution institutions, and construct an arbitration-friendly judicial environment jointly with them.

Tan Sri James Foong Cheng Yuen

Thereafter, the panel discussion of the Kuala Lumpur Summit convened. The panel discussion consisted of five sessions, on arbitration and mediation (Innovative Practice and Guiding Policy in PRC’s Commercial Arbitration and Mediation: Balance between Market and Law), financial and investment dispute resolution (Restructuring in the Capital Market of PRC: Addressing the Global Change and New Economic Environment), intellectual property dispute resolution (Lessons from the Tech Giant Battles: New Trends of Resolving Technology and Patent-related Disputes in the PRC), construction dispute resolution (Public Supervision and De-administration on Construction Projects in PRC: Quality, Efficiency, and Environment Protection), and international trade dispute resolution (New Era Under The New Trade Relations: The Role of Arbitration and Opportunities Under The Belt And Road Initiative For ASEAN Countries), respectively.

The session on arbitration and mediation was moderated by Ms. Gunavathi Subramaniam, Consultant of Nasser Hamid & Associates. Dr. Wang Xuehua, Partner of Beijing Huanzhong & Partners, and Ms. Yang Xueyu, Partner of Hui Zhong Law Firm, acted as the keynote speakers, and Mr. Paul Aston, Partner of Holman Fenwick Willan LLP and Ms. Shanti Abraham, Founding Partner of Shanti Abraham & Associates, as commentators. Dr. Wang and Ms. Yang presented to the audience an introduction of the changes of Chinese laws and regulations related to commercial arbitration and commercial mediation in 2018, analyses of typical cases, and comments on hotspot issues. Moderated by Ms. Abraham, the panelists had discussion and exchanges on the newly established “one-stop” dispute resolution mechanism of the International Commercial Court of the PRC Supreme People’s Court, the influence the Singapore Convention may have on dispute resolution industry, and the requirements on professional qualification and ethics of international mediators.

Dr. Wang Xuehua

Ms. Yang Xueyu

Ms. Gunavathi Subramaniam

Mr. Paul Aston

Ms. Shanti Abraham

Panel Discussion on Arbitration and Mediation

The second session was on financial and investment dispute resolution, and was moderated by Mr. Jalalullail Othman, Partner of Shook Lin & Bok. Dr. Tao Xiuming, Partner of JunZeJun Law Offices, and Mr. Bao Zhi, Partner of Baker McKenzie FenXun, acted as the keynote speakers, and Mr. Leong Wai Hong, Partner of Skrine, and Ms. Leng Wie Mun, Partner of Kevin & Co, as commentators. Started from the historical background of the separate supervision of China's financial industry, Dr. Tao introduced the financial asset management regulation in China, challenges of financial asset management dispute resolution and changes in the attitude of the judiciary. Mr. Bao started his speech from the changing legal environment for investment, saying that the governmental authorities was strengthening the regulation on asset management, enterprise operations and the like in order to keep financial stability and national security, while deregulating in respect of market access. He further shared views on practical issues including the criteria of invalidating investment contracts and typical structures of equity repurchase agreements. The panelists then had in-depth discussion on the respective advantages of litigation and arbitration as methods of dispute resolution in resolving financial disputes, and influences of the financial market fluctuations and the innovations of financial products on adjudication of financial disputes.

Dr. Tao Xiuming

Mr. Bao Zhi

Mr. Jalalullail Othman

Mr. Leong Wai Hong

Ms. Leng Wie Mun

Panel Discussion on Financial and Investment Dispute Resolution

The third session was on intellectual property dispute resolution. Ms. Hemalatha Parasa Ramulu, Partner of Skrine, acted as the moderator, Mr. Hu Ke, Partner of Jingtian & Gongcheng the keynote speaker, and Mr. Choon Hon Leng, Partner of Raja, Darryl & Loh, and Mr. Peter Bird, Managing Director of Berkeley Research Group, the commentators. Mr. Hu firstly presented an overall review of the highlights of Chinese IP law making and amendment in 2018, shared the efforts of Chinese courts in enhancing the standards of damage compensation for IP infringement and improving the professionalism, consistency and predictability of adjudication, and introduced the value of interim awards and injunctions in IP dispute resolution. In panel discussion, the panelists discussed practical issues such as the arbitrability of IP disputes, the influence of market transition on IP protection and dispute resolution and the valuation of IP assets.

Mr. Hu Ke

Ms. Hemalatha Parasa Ramulu

Mr. Choon Hon Leng

Mr. Peter Bird

Panel Discussion on IP Dispute Resolution

The fourth session was on construction dispute resolution, where Dr. Zhou Xianfeng, Partner of JunHe LLP, acted as the keynote speaker, Mr. Donatian Felix Dorairaj, Partner of Dorairaj, Low & The the moderator, and Ms. Swee Im Tan, International Arbitrator of 39 Essex Chambers, Mr. Andrew Goddard, Queen's Counsel at Atkin Chambers, and Mr. Andrew Jeffries, Independent Arbitrator of Jeffries Arbitration, the commentators. Dr. Zhou firstly introduced the China-Malaysia cooperation in the field of construction, and specifically introduced the “deregulation” reform and practice in Chinese construction industry based on the National Development and Reform Commission’s material reduction of the scope of construction projects subject to mandatory bidding and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development’s cancellation of record filing system for construction contracts. The Panelists then had discussions on the validity of Yin-Yang contracts, the importance of file management for construction dispute resolution, the application of industry practice in construction dispute resolution and international investment arbitration arising from construction disputes.

Dr. Zhou Xianfeng

Mr. Donatian Felix Dorairaj

Ms. Swee Im Tan

Mr. Andrew Goddard, QC

Mr. Andrew Jeffries

Panel Discussion on Construction Dispute Resolution

The fifth session was on international trade dispute resolution, which was moderated by Mr. Arvindran Manoosegaran, Associate Investment Manager of IMF Bentham. Mr. Liu Jiong, Partner of AllBright Law Offices, acted as the keynote speaker, and Mr. Allen Choong, Partner of Rahmat Lim & Partners, Dato' Sunil Abraham, Partner of Cecil Abraham & Partners, and Dr. Sam Luttrell, Partner of Clifford Chance LLP, the commentators. Mr. Liu firstly presented a comprehensive review of the trade cooperation between China and Malaysia, and introduced the latest Chinese legislation on trade. At last, he analyzed the criteria of defining the constitution of legal personality confusion in the context of associated firms in judicial practice based on case study. The panelists then had discussions centered on the challenges and opportunities brought by the Belt and Road Initiative to the dispute resolution industry, the relationship between free trade and cross-border dispute resolution, the increase of investment treaties and international investment arbitrations that may arise therefrom.

Mr. Liu Jiong

Mr. Arvindran Manoosegaran

Mr. Allen Choong

Dato' Sunil Abraham

Dr. Sam Luttrell

Panel Discussion on International Trade Dispute Resolution

The last session of the Kuala Lumpur Summit was moderated by Mr. Loh Chang Woo, President of Malaysia-China Legal Cooperation Society, where Mr. Ong Yew Chee, former Director for China and East Asia of Foreign Trade Development Bureau of Malaysia, delivered closing remarks. Mr. Ong Yew Chee firstly extended congratulations on the success of the event. He said that the long-standing development of economic and trade ties relies on good business environment and stable legal framework, and even more on independent, professional and efficient dispute resolution means. Commercial arbitration is undoubtedly one of the most important methods of resolving cross-border investment disputes, and is expected to be the preferred dispute resolution method for resolving such disputes. The in-depth exchanges and cooperation on China-Malaysia commercial disputes between the BAC and the AIAC, both of which are international leading arbitration institutions, are in line with the requirements of China-Malaysia business and legal community, and thus will help them to jointly explore and develop world-class dispute resolution services modes and build strong dispute resolution service platforms. In addition, under the background of the Belt and Road Initiative, the cooperation between the two institutions are also a pioneering and valuable attempt for developing and promoting the cross-border and cross-institution cooperation in Belt and Road commercial and investment dispute resolution. With the joint efforts of Chinese and Malaysian partners, the Belt and Road Initiative will inevitably push forward the China-Malaysia cooperation to a new height, and both partners will jointly embrace a brand new era of Asia.

Mr. Loh Chang Woo

Mr. Ong Yew Chee

The Kuala Lumpur Summit then came to a successful end. The speakers not only carefully joined in the panel discussions during the summit, but also had warm exchanges during tea breaks, the lunch party and the cocktail reception, where they had in-depth talks on a number of issues concerning the business environment and dispute resolution in China.

Group photo of speakers

Exchanges after the Summit

The International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (CRCICA), the Law Association for Asia and the Pacific (LAWASIA), the Malaysia-China Legal Cooperation Society and Malaysia-China Commercial Mediation Centre and LexPR provided assistance and support to the Kuala Lumpur Summit. As media partner, Global Arbitration Review (GAR) and Wolters Kluwer were also engaged in the Kuala Lumpur Summit.

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