On June 22nd, 2019, China Maritime Arbitration Commission (CMAC) held “2019 China Maritime Jurisdiction and Arbitration Summit”  (the Summit) in Shanghai, China. The Summit is co-supported by Insurance Association of China, China National Shiprecycling Association, China Association of the National Shipbuilding Industry, China Shipowners Mutual Assurance Association, China Shipowners’ Association, China Ports & Harbors Association, China International Freight Forwarders Association, China Maritime Law Association, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of China, International Shipping Enterprise Alliance, China Diving & Salvage Contractors Association, China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing, Maritime Professional Commission of All China Lawyers Association, Dalian Maritime University, Shanghai Maritime University, Benchmark Chambers International, and Hong Kong Maritime Law Association. With approximately 350 attendees from courts, arbitration sector, business sector, lawyer community, and academia, the Summit featured the theme of “Challenges, Innovations, and Prospects of China Maritime Judicature and Arbitration in the New Era.” Mr. Gu Chao, Secretary-General of CMAC, hosted the opening ceremony of the Summit. Mr. Luo Dongchuan, Vice President of the Supreme People’s Court, Mr. Chen Ying, Standing Committee Member of Shanghai Municipal Committee and Deputy Mayor, and Mr. Lu Pengqi, Vice Chairman of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade and Deputy Director of CMAC, attended the opening ceremony and delivered speeches.

Mr. Chen Yin, Deputy Mayor of Shanghai, welcomed all attendees. He illustrated that Shanghai made great progress in building itself as an international shipping center, and Shanghai has always attached importance to the development of maritime justice and arbitration, benchmarking the highest international standards, and constantly improving the construction level of shipping centers. Shanghai will accelerate the construction of maritime justice and arbitration capacity, enhance the credibility and international influence of maritime trials and maritime arbitration, and accelerate the construction of an international maritime justice center to provide powerful support for the establishment of a remarkable global city and a socially modern international metropolis with world influence.

Mr. Lu Pengqi, Vice President of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade(“CCPIT”), said in his opening speech that China is accelerating the construction of the Belt and Road, vigorously developing the marine economy, and constantly moving toward a trade power, a maritime power, and a transportation power. As maritime justice and maritime arbitration are determined core means for the military and the marine control, the vigorous development of Chinese maritime arbitration and the construction of the International Maritime Justice Center complement each other. At present, opportunities and challenges coexist. We must aware problem-oriented consciousness to address shortcomings in development, learn from international advanced concepts and experience, feature specialization, strengthen international exchanges and cooperation, and constantly enlarge the role of functions to enhance the credibility of China maritime justice and arbitration. The CCPIT and CMAC are willing to work together with the business sector, the arbitration sector, and relevant sectors of society to make a positive and greater contribution to promote the development of maritime justice as well as arbitration and the healthy development of the world’s marine economy.

Mr. Luo Dongchuan, Vice President of the Supreme People’s Court, said in his speech that under the background of the Belt and Road initiative ,it is of great practical significance for the China Maritime Arbitration Commission to host this summit,. He stressed that it is necessary to give full play to the role of the maritime trial function, promote the development of the principles and rules of international law through more typical cases, and continuously expand the international influence of Chinese maritime justice. He urged to further improve the judicial support and supervise the work of maritime arbitration, develop mechanism to promote the further improvement of the quality of maritime arbitration, always put the non-litigation dispute resolution mechanism in front to facilitate the participation of maritime arbitration institutions in the construction of multi-disciplinary resolution mechanisms and to create an internationally influential Chinese maritime arbitration brand, and guide the maritime courts and the CMAC and other arbitration institutions to establish a dispute resolution platform for arbitration, mediation, and litigation to effectively improve the efficiency of resolving maritime disputes. He also commented that it is crucial to actively promote the revision of the Maritime Law, launch the study on the revision of the Maritime Litigation Special Procedures as soon as possible, actively participate in the drafting of relevant international maritime conventions, and contribute to Chinese wisdom for the improvement of international maritime rules.

The subsequent keynote speech was hosted by Professor Yin Dongnian of Shanghai Maritime University. Ms. Wang Shumei, President of the Fourth Civil Tribunal of the Supreme People’s Court, and Mr. Gu Chao, Secretary-General of CMAC, delivered wonderful addresses respectively with the topics of “ADR Mechanism and Establishment of the International Center of Maritime Justice” and “Chinese Maritime Arbitration in the Context of Building China into a Maritime Power.” President Wang said that in the past few decades, as Chinese maritime justice and arbitration started from scratch and experienced the process from small to large and from single to diversified, Chinese maritime justice has achieved considerable success, and so does the credibility of Chinese maritime arbitration. In the new era, the diversified dispute resolution mechanism is a key boost for the construction of an international maritime justice center. The Chinese judiciary strongly supports dispute resolution mechanisms such as arbitration and mediation. The Supreme People’s Court has actively explored to establish a one-stop dispute resolution platform. She maintained that it is the common responsibility and mission for Chinese maritime justice and maritime arbitration to build an international maritime justice center and to resolve maritime disputes fairly and efficiently. Secretary-General Gu shared three major concerns of CMAC under the new circumstance: first, the development orientation of Chinese maritime arbitration; second, the credibility of Chinese maritime arbitration; third, the positive interaction between Chinese maritime arbitration and the judiciary. He also put forward three suggestions for the development of Chinese maritime arbitration, including constructing a maritime service community to improve the aggregation effect of the industry, strengthening collaboration to promote informatization and concentrate superior resources in the field of maritime justice and arbitration to clarify the specialization of division of labor for the implementation of strategies.

The first topic of the summit was “Development and Review of Chinese Maritime Litigation in the New Era,” and Mr. Hou Shujie, Vice President of the Dalian Maritime Court, served as the moderator. Mr. Xie Zhenxian, Chief Judge of Maritime Tribunal of Shanghai Maritime Court, proposed in his speech “Promoting the Establishment of International Maritime Justice Center through Innovative Concepts and International Visions” that the establishment of an international maritime justice center should adopt international vision, innovative working methods, and advocate sense of missions. Mr. Zhang Wenguang, Associate Research Fellow of the Institute of International Law of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Deputy Director and Secretary General of Belt and Road Justice Research Base of the Supreme People’s Court, and CMAC Arbitrator, introduced the national strategy and institutional orientation in the “Observations on Chinese Maritime Litigation (2013-2019)” from 2013 to 2019. The overall situation of Chinese maritime justice in the year includes maritime judicial functions, case guidance systems, international commercial courts, maritime judicial reform, and international judicial assistance. Mr. Chen Yanzhong, Deputy Chief Judge of Trial Supervision Division of Xiamen Maritime Court, based on recent practical cases, demonstrated the maritime court’s determination of the validity of arbitration in arbitration, property preservation of maritime arbitration, revocation of arbitral award, and recognition and enforcement of foreign maritime arbitral awards in terms of support and supervision, illustrated in “Supervision and Support of Maritime Arbitration by Chinese Maritime Courts—Observations from Recent Cases.” The Honorable Sir Bernard Eder, London international arbitrator and judge of the Singapore International Commercial Court, explained the legal path, procedures, and cases of appealing the arbitral award under British law in 1996 in his address, “Challenging an Award in the English Courts.” Mr. Yang Liangyi, International Commercial and Maritime Arbitrator, explained the conditions, enforcement effects, and violation consequences of the British court ban and freezing order and interpreted the impact on maritime and international arbitration of the British Ban on Suit.

The second topic of the summit was “Practice and Integration of Chinese Maritime Arbitration in the New Era”, hosted by Ms. Xie Changqing, Deputy Secretary-General of CMAC. Ms. Chen Bo, Deputy Secretary-General of CMAC and Vice President of the Arbitration Court, gave a detailed account of the difference between maritime arbitration and commercial arbitration as well as the basic situation of CMAC’s case acceptance in her speech, “Features and Advantages of Chinese Maritime Arbitration.” Mr. Shen Sibao, Professor of the University of International Business and Economics, Director of the China International Economic and Trade Law Research Institute, Chairman of the Shenzhen International Court of Arbitration, and Member of the International Commercial Committee of the Supreme People’s Court, addressed “Logic of Arbitrators.” He suggested that the arbitrator should develop a corporate mindset and a macro awareness, and he explained the interpretation of the clarification right. Mr. Nie Ying, Director of CMAC Aviation Dispute Arbitration/Mediation Center and expert in civil aviation, made a vivid review of the advantages of arbitration in the aviation field as a dispute resolution method in the perspective of “Features and Advantages of Choosing Arbitration to Solve Aviation Disputes.” Mr. Li Lianjun, Partner of Reed Smith Richards Butler, compared the agency profiles, arbitration clauses, fees, and arbitrator designation of CMAC, HKIAC, HKMAG, LMAA, and SCMA in his talk, “Arbitration in CMAC or HKMAG or LMAA or SCMA.” Mr. Jin Yulai, Founder and Senior Partner of Kai-rong Law Firm, shared the practical issues and procedures worthy of attention in the case of award absence in “How to Better Represent an Arbitration Case with Default Award.”

The third topic of the summit was “Analysis and Practices Regarding Hot Issues of Maritime Justice and Arbitration in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative,” hosted by Ms. Li Xiujie, President of Tianjin Maritime Court. Mr. Chu Beiping, Dean of Law School of Dalian Maritime University, gave a detailed explanation of the overall situation, key points, and challenges of the revision of the Maritime Law through his “Latest Report on Revising the Maritime Code of P.R.China.” Mr. Ni Xuewei, Director of Research Department of Guangzhou Maritime Court, introduced the manifestations of maritime judicial support and supervision of maritime arbitration, and made a number of suggestions for the revision of the Arbitration Law in his speech, “Support and Supervision on Maritime Arbitration through Maritime Adjudication.” Mr. Guo Zaiyu, Judge of the Fourth Civil Tribunal of the Supreme People’s Court and Judge of the International Commercial Court, put forward questions from the different practices in the calculation of damages in practice, reviewed the principles and rules for breach of contract damages, and shared inspiration for relevant Taiwan practices in his address, “Analysis of Maritime Cases Relating to the Belt and Road Initiatives.” In a speech titled “Latest Development on International Shipping Arbitration and Litigation and Suggestions to Chinese Parties”, Edward Alder, Barrister of the Hong Kong Prince’s Chambers, made recommendations to Chinese parties from two aspects: the delivery of arbitration notice and the British Ban on Suit. Through “Legislation Updates of Electronic Bill of Lading,” Ms. Guo Yu, Associate Professor of Peking University Law School and Director of the Maritime Law Research Center, introduced the domestic and international legislation of electronic bills of lading on the legislative dynamics, proposed the problems to be solved by the electronic bill of lading legislation, and explained important issues such as the EBL credit model competition, bill of lading legislation, and its relevance to China.

The fourth topic of the summit was “Risk Control and Management Strategy among Chinese Parties in the Context of the Belt and Road Initiative” moderated by Mr. Ye Hongjun, General Counsel of China Cosco Shipping Co., Ltd. In his speech, “New Feature of Foreign-related Maritime Cases in Zhejiang and Its Implications in the Context of the Belt and Road Initiative,” Mr. Wu Xianjiang, Vice President of Ningbo Maritime Court, introduced the new characteristics, new situations, and new risks as well as inspiration of Zhejiang foreign-related maritime disputes in combination with actual trial cases. Mr. Yang Yuntao, Deputy Director of China Merchants Group Transport & Logistics Department and Beijing Headquarters and Director of China International Freight Forwarders Association Legal Affair Working Committee, analyzed the reasons of failures and successful cases of domestic enterprises’ overseas arbitration and proposed suggestions for the response in “Companies’ Experiences and Suggestions on Arbitration Abroad.” Mr. Chen Xiangyong, Senior Partner and Chairman of Board of Management of Guangdong Wang Jing & Co, analyzed the basic pattern of international arbitration and the failure of arbitration from the current situation of shipbuilding industry development and conducted a case study for response strategy with the title of “Experience of Assisting Chinese Parties in Arbitration Case in London Regarding Marine Construction Projects.” Paul Aston, Partner of Holman Fenwick & Willan in Singapore, in his address “the User’s Perspective: Tips for Conducting Foreign Arbitration or Litigation—Competition from Rise of ICCs,” reminded the parties of some important risk points that should be noted in the face of foreign-related litigation and arbitration. He also gave an overview of overseas dispute resolution from a practical perspective. Ms. Wang Wenying, Secretary-General of CMAC Hong Kong Arbitration Center, introduced the opportunities brought by the national strategy such as the Belt and Road Initiative to international arbitration and analyzed the issues and risks that should be considered with the “Dispute Resolution Clause Drafting and Risk-control in the Context of the Belt and Road Initiative.”

Ms. Chen Bo, Deputy Secretary-General of CMAC and Vice President of the Arbitration Court, made a closing speech for the summit. On behalf of CMAC, she thanked all the speakers and the guests for their contributions and participation as well as the supporters and sponsors for their sponsorship and support. She said that CMAC will continue to build a research platform, provide exchange opportunities, and work with colleagues from societal sectors to jointly promote the development and innovation of Chinese maritime justice and arbitration concepts, systems and systems in the new era.

The summit is an important meeting in Chinese maritime justice and maritime arbitration area. It demonstrated the achievements of Chinese maritime trial and arbitration undertakings, and built a platform for the sharing of advanced maritime justice and maritime arbitration concepts and exploration of theory and practice. The problems and solutions examined in the summit have effectively improved the ability of maritime risk prevention and dispute response, and made active efforts to accelerate the development of Chinese international maritime judicial center and the development of maritime arbitration. As the leading force in Chinese maritime arbitration field, CMAC will strive to forge ahead, integrate innovative attitudes, remain efficient, pragmatic and open, solidly promote the self-construction of institutions, and take a professional and international development path. CMAC will effortfully continue to promote the development and improvement of Chinese maritime arbitration system, help the cultivation of talents in Chinese maritime arbitration and the construction of arbitration culture. At the same time, CMAC will actively integrate into the international maritime arbitration governance, promote the construction of the maritime judicial center linkage mechanism, and make contributions to serve the Belt and Road initiative, the construction of the International Maritime Justice Center, and the expansion of Chinese maritime arbitration.