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China: Paris forum targets global supremacy in dispute resolution

Sunday, 19th November 2018

"The International Court of Arbitration (ICA) wants to resolve disputes arising from China’s multi-billion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), claiming that it is the only arbitration institution that is ‘truly global’.

ICA president Alexis Mourre said parties will require a neutral venue when resolving disputes. He said the court would not create any perceived problems with neutrality, adding: ‘The court is not Asian, not European, it’s global.’ 

His comments will be seen as a shot across the bows of other forums hoping to cash in on arbitration disputes. Several arbitration centres, including the Hong Kong International Arbitration Center (HKAIC), as well as centres in Singapore and England and Wales, are marketing themselves as the ‘go-to’ place for international dispute resolution.

England and Wales in particular has ramped up its courting of other jurisdictions with the Ministry of Justice’s Legal Services are GREAT campaign. The campaign’s aim is to forge legal links with emerging jurisdictions as Brexit approaches, and to market England and Wales as the ’world’s pre-eminent legal centre’.

The ICA, part of the International Chamber of Commerce, is headquartered in Paris. Mourre was speaking at an event during last week’s Hong Kong International Arbitration Week: ’’Belt and Road: Financing and other issues’.

The BRI is a development strategy proposed by China’s president Xi Jinping that aims to improve connectivity and cooperation between Eurasian countries. The discussion focused on the types of dispute that may arise from the project and the best forums for resolving them."

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Language: English
Contact: Max Walters

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