HKIAC and BVI IAC sign cooperation agreement
HKIAC is pleased to announce that it has entered into a cooperation agreement (Agreement) with the British Virgin Islands International Arbitration Centre (BVI IAC). Sarah Grimmer, HKIAC Secretary-General, François Lassalle, BVI IAC Chief Executive Officer, and Hana Doumal, BVI IAC Registrar, signed the Agreement online from Hong Kong and the BVI respectively.
Grimmer comments that “HKIAC’s arbitration caseload has consistently included a significant number of entities incorporated in the BVI. We are pleased to cooperate with the BVI IAC through the exchange of knowledge and best practice to support users’ needs and preferences in this jurisdiction. We look forward to working with our friends at the BVI IAC.”
Lassalle adds “the Agreement provides both institutions with the possibility for holding hearings at the other’s facilities and encourages knowledge and best practices sharing between HKIAC and BVI IAC. We are excited about our formal collaboration with HKIAC and look forward to continuing to work together in the best interest of the international business community.”
The percentage of HKIAC arbitration cases involving entities incorporated in the BVI has increased five-fold in the past decade, with BVI entities being involved in 20% of HKIAC arbitrations in 2020. The total value of those disputes is approximately US$13 billion and involve counterparties from 32 jurisdictions.
The BVI entities in HKIAC arbitrations commonly include a Mainland Chinese element in their corporate structure. Parties to these arbitrations when seated in Hong Kong have benefitted from the unique HK-PRC Interim Measures Arrangement under which applications for asset preservation orders to PRC courts have reached US$2.1 billion to date.