Hong Kong-Mainland China Arrangement on Interim Measures: HKIAC Update
HKIAC is pleased to provide an update on its work under the Arrangement Concerning Mutual Assistance in Court-ordered Interim Measures in Aid of Arbitral Proceedings by the Courts of the Mainland and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (the “Arrangement”).
This update covers the following information in respect of the Arrangement:
- HKIAC’s latest statistics.
- HKIAC’s English translations of two documents issued by the Supreme People’s Court of the People’s Republic of China (the “SPC”) to provide guidance under the Arrangement.
- HKIAC’s responses to frequently asked questions.
Since the Arrangement came into force on 1 October 2019, HKIAC has processed 25 applications made to the Mainland Chinese courts for interim measures. The key findings include the following:
- All applications were made in arbitrations seated in Hong Kong and administered by HKIAC under its Administered Arbitration Rules.
- All applications were made on an ex parte basis and in arbitrations that had been commenced.
- 24 applications were made for the preservation of assets and one was for the preservation of evidence.
- Approximately 30% of the applications were made by parties from Mainland China and 70% were made by parties from jurisdictions outside of Mainland China (i.e. the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Hong Kong, Samoa, Singapore and Switzerland). Approximately 50% of the applications concerned assets or evidence owned by Mainland Chinese parties and 50% concerned assets on the Mainland owned by non-Mainland parties (i.e. from the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Hong Kong and the Netherlands).
- The applications were made to 15 different Intermediate People’s Courts (“IPCs”) in the following Mainland Chinese cities: Beijing, Dalian, Hangzhou, Jinan, Lianyungang, Nanjing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Xiamen, Yantai and Zhaoqing.
- 16 applications were submitted to the IPCs by the applicant directly and nine were submitted by HKIAC to the IPCs upon their request.
- HKIAC issued a letter of acceptance to facilitate each of the 25 applications as required by the Arrangement. HKIAC issues a letter of acceptance typically within 24 hours from its receipt of the application.
- The total value of assets sought to be preserved across all applications was RMB 9.4 billion or approximately USD 1.4 billion.
- HKIAC is aware of 17 decisions issued by the IPCs. All 17 decisions granted the applications for preservation of assets upon the applicant’s provision of security and the total value of assets preserved amounted to RMB 8.7 billion or approximately USD 1.3 billion.
- Based on the information available in respect of 15 of the 17 decisions issued by the IPCs, the average time taken by the IPC to issue a decision was 14 days from its receipt of the complete application.
English translations of the SPC documents
To date, the SPC has issued two documents to provide guidance on the implementation of the Arrangement. They are (i) a note regarding the interpretation and application of the Arrangement published on People’s Court Daily on 26 September 2019 (the “SPC Note”), and (ii) 12 templates for use by parties or qualified Hong Kong arbitral institutions for different applications under the Arrangement (the “SPC Templates”). The SPC Note and the SPC Templates are often referred to or used in cases in which HKIAC is requested to facilitate an application under the Arrangement.
The original text of the SPC Note and the SPC Templates is in Chinese. The original text of the SPC Note can be found here. The original text of the SPC Templates can be found here.
HKIAC has prepared unofficial English translations of these SPC documents. The English translation of the SPC Note is available here. The English translation of the SPC Templates is available here.
HKIAC’s responses to frequently asked questions
In response to the high level of interest in the Arrangement, HKIAC has published a report to address some of the most frequently asked questions. The report provides an overview of the Arrangement and its effect and covers general information regarding the application process, HKIAC’s role and applications processed by HKIAC under the Arrangement. The report is published here and will be updated regularly.