FURTHER HONG KONG JUDGMENT CONFIRMS THAT AN ARBITRAL TRIBUNAL IS “THE MASTER OF ITS OWN PROCEDURAL RULES” AND COMPLIANCE WITH PRE-ARBITRATION CONDITIONS SHOULD NOT BE REVIEWED BY THE COURTS

In the recent judgment of T v B [2021] HKCFI 3645, the High Court of Hong Kong observed that “if the Court is the master of its own procedural rules, so should be the arbitral tribunal“. In so doing, the Court reaffirmed the principle that compliance with pre-conditions to arbitration is a question of admissibility, … Read more

HONG KONG COURT CONSTRUES INCONSISTENT DISPUTE RESOLUTION CLAUSES IN RELATED CONTRACTS

In a recent decision that involved interlinked agreements containing different dispute resolution clauses, the Hong Kong Court of First Instance refused to stay court proceedings in favour of arbitration, on the basis that the centre of gravity of the dispute did not fall within the contracts that contained the arbitration agreement. Zpmc-Red Box Energy Services … Read more

HONG KONG COURT CONSIDERS PERMISSIVE ARBITRATION CLAUSES

The Hong Kong Court of First Instance has stayed an action to arbitration where the agreement provided that disputes “may” be referred to arbitration. Kinli Civil Engineering Limited v Geotech Engineering Limited [2021] HKCFI 2503 Background Kinli commenced court proceedings to recover HKD 4,055,696.83, which it argued was due and owing from Geotech under a … Read more

HKIAC publishes average costs and duration

The Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre has released an updated report on the average costs and duration of HKIAC arbitral proceedings, following previous reports in 2018 and 2016. The report demonstrates that HKIAC offers parties administered arbitration, as well as expedited and emergency proceedings, that are both efficient and reasonably priced. The updated report reflects … Read more

KEY JUDGMENT ON ARBITRATION CLAUSES AFFECTING THOUSANDS OF COMMERCIAL CONTRACTS

Herbert Smith Freehills has secured an important victory in Hong Kong proceedings with far-reaching consequences for arbitration disputes around the world. Many commercial contracts contain “escalation clauses” requiring parties to take certain steps before formal arbitration begins – such as a requirement to “negotiate in good faith” before starting arbitration. Previously, failure to comply with … Read more

Hong Kong enacts Supplemental Arrangement in full

In a previous post, we reported the Supplemental Arrangement Concerning Mutual Enforcement of Arbitral Awards between the Mainland and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, which was concluded on 27 November 2020. The Supplemental Arrangement was a welcome development that clarified and removed certain restrictions in the mutual enforcement regime between Hong Kong and Mainland … Read more