HKIAC Case Digest offers users insight into HKIAC's procedural decision-making, including the analyses of HKIAC's standing committees - the Proceedings Committee and the Appointments Committee - to different procedural issues in cases that have been concluded for more than six months. Complimentary access to a case abstract is available to all. Those who subscribe will gain access to an abstract, the relevant parts of the arbitration clause(s), the relevant background to the procedural issue, and HKIAC's analysis and decision.

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Disclaimer
The HKIAC Case Digest summaries do not form part of HKIAC's decisions and do not bind HKIAC in any way including in any other case. HKIAC makes decisions in cases pursuant to the applicable rules and based on the circumstances of each case.

 
1976 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (1 Case)

CD2022/03/06

Date of Decision: June 2017

Abstract

HKIAC decided to proceed with an arbitration against three Respondents under the 1976 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“Rules”) and the 2015 Procedures for the Administration of Arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“Procedures”). While the three Respondents were not expressly listed as parties to the relevant arbitration agreement, HKIAC considered that the test for proceeding with the arbitration under Article 11.1 of the Procedures was satisfied, as there was prima facie evidence that the Respondents were bound by the arbitration agreement through the predecessor’s signing of the underlying agreement or assignment of shares between the Respondents.

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1993 HKIAC Securities Arbitration Rules (1 Case)

CD2021/12/01

Date of Decision: January 2021

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC determined its fees and expenses in an arbitration under the HKIAC Securities Arbitration Rules 1993 (“Securities Rules”) where the Securities Rules do not prescribe the method for determining such fees and expenses. In determining its fees and expenses, HKIAC considered the amount and nature of its work and compared its role under the Securities Rules with that under its main rules for administered arbitration.

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2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (16 Cases)

CD2021/12/08

Date of Decision: October 2018

Abstract 

In this case, the Claimant requested to apply the expedited procedure under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) on the ground of exceptional urgency, citing its urgent need for capital and potentially imminent insolvency. HKIAC rejected the request on the basis that, among other things, the Claimant did not make out a case of exceptional urgency and the expedited procedure could not provide the protection sought by the Claimant to avoid the alleged harm caused by the Respondents. HKIAC also considered the complexity of the dispute and found that the prejudice caused to the Respondents of being forced into the expedited procedure of a complex and high-value dispute outweighed the benefits that could be obtained by the Claimant.

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CD2021/12/09

Date of Decision: August 2018

Abstract 

In this case, the Claimant requested HKIAC to appoint an emergency arbitrator to order the Respondents to refrain from dissipating their assets in and outside of Hong Kong in respect of a corporate dispute concerning a failed transaction under a partnership agreement and its associated agreements. HKIAC appointed an emergency arbitrator within two days from the date of its receipt of the request in accordance with the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”).

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CD2021/12/10

Date of Decision: August 2018

Abstract

In this case, the Claimants requested the consolidation of two arbitrations against the same Respondent arising under separate but materially identical contracts, arbitration clauses, and claims relating to the same multicurrency note programme, pursuant to Article 28.1(c) of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (the “2013 Rules”). HKIAC decided to consolidate the arbitrations having considered the conditions under Article 28.1(c) and several other factors.


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CD2021/12/11

Date of Decision: June 2018

Abstract

In this case, HKIAC granted an application for expedited procedure to allow the dispute to be determined before an imminent deadline for the termination of a buy-out transaction. HKIAC considered that a case of exceptional urgency was established and exercised its discretion in favour of granting the expedited procedure having considered the complexity of the dispute, the type of relief sought, the risk of irreparable harm alleged by the Claimants, possible prejudice to the Respondent, and due process.

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CD2021/12/12

Date of Decision: September 2017

Abstract 

In this case, an entity sought to join itself to an arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) in the circumstances where it was not a party to the arbitration clause giving rise to the arbitration but a party to a relevant transaction document. HKIAC declined the request on the basis that the test for joinder under the 2013 Rules was not satisfied.

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CD2021/12/13

Date of Decision: December 2016

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC proceeded with the arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) on a prima facie basis under a shipping contract providing for arbitration in accordance with the “HKIAC Terms”. HKIAC considered that the words “HKIAC Terms” could be construed as a reference to the 2013 Rules in the maritime context and there was a prima facie basis for finding that an arbitration agreement under the 2013 Rules might exist.

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CD2021/12/14

Date of Decision: November 2016

Abstract 

In this case, the arbitration clause referred to the arbitration rules of HKIAC and the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (“SIAC”) and designated SIAC to appoint the sole arbitrator. Based on the terms of the arbitration clause and the parties’ positions in a separate but related court proceeding, HKIAC decided to administer the arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) on a prima facie basis but invited SIAC to appoint the sole arbitrator following the appointment process in the 2013 Rules. SIAC appointed the sole arbitrator accordingly.

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CD2022/03/02

Date of Decision: January 2016

Abstract 

HKIAC did not proceed with this arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) where the arbitration clause referred to “an Arbitration court of Hong Kong”. HKIAC considered that the language was too uncertain to establish an agreement to arbitrate under the 2013 Rules.

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CD2022/03/03

Date of Decision: June 2016

Abstract

HKIAC proceeded to administer this arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) where the arbitration clause contained references to “HKIAC Rules” and “the prevailing rules of the Hong Kong International Centre”. HKIAC was satisfied that the requirements under Articles 1.1 and 19.4 of the 2013 Rules were met.  

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CD2022/03/04

Date of Decision: June 2017

Abstract

HKIAC proceeded to administer this arbitration under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) where the arbitration clause provided for “THE HONGKONG INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION CENTER AT THE HONGKONG CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY IN ACCORDANCE WITH ITS ARBITRATION RULES”. HKIAC was satisfied that the requirements under Articles 1.1 and 19.4 of the 2013 Rules were met.  

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CD2022/03/08

Date of Decision: July 2016

Abstract 

At the request of an additional party, HKIAC joined the additional party to an arbitration pursuant to Article 27.8 of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) where it was a signatory to the arbitration agreement and its interest might have been affected by the outcome of the case.

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CD2022/03/09

Date of Decision: December 2017

Abstract 

HKIAC joined the shareholders of a party to an arbitration pursuant to Article 27.8 of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”) on the basis that those shareholders were parties to the arbitration agreement giving rise to the arbitration.  

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CD2022/07/02

Date of Decision: July 2018

Abstract

HKIAC decided to refer this matter to a sole arbitrator in light of the amount in dispute (approximately HK$1.6 million or US$200,000) and the complexity of the case, under Article 6.1 of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”).

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CD2022/07/04

Date of Decision: October 2017

Abstract

HKIAC decided to refer this matter to a sole arbitrator in light of the amount in dispute (approximately HK$62 million or US$7.9 million) and the complexity of the case, under Article 6.1 of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”).

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CD2022/07/05

Date of Decision: September 2018

Abstract

HKIAC decided to refer this matter to a sole arbitrator in light of the amount in dispute (approximately HK$24 million or US$3 million), the complexity of the case and the number of arbitrators in a related arbitration, under Article 6.1 of the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”).

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CD2022/07/09

Date of Decision: December 2016

Abstract

In this case, HKIAC decided not to grant an application for expedited procedure under the 2013 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2013 Rules”), given the nature of the allegations raised and the complexity of the dispute.

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2013 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (3 Cases)

CD2021/12/02

Date of Decision: January 2018

Abstract 

In this case, the Claimant commenced a single arbitration under three contracts pursuant to the 2013 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (the “UNCITRAL Rules”) and the 2015 HKIAC Procedures for the Administration of Arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (the “2015 Procedures”). HKIAC considered the issues of the applicability of the 2015 Procedures, the Claimant’s ability to commence a single arbitration under multiple contracts under the UNCITRAL Rules, and the Respondent’s jurisdictional objection. HKIAC decided to proceed with the arbitration as commenced on a prima facie basis, leaving the jurisdictional objection to be determined by the arbitral tribunal once constituted.

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CD2021/12/03

Date of Decision: June 2017

Abstract 

This case was commenced as a single arbitration under four agreements pursuant to the 2013 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“UNCITRAL Rules”) and the 2015 Procedures for the Administration of Arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“2015 Procedures”). One of the Respondents was not a signatory to any arbitration clause invoked in the arbitration and the UNCITRAL Rules do not include express provisions on commencing a single arbitration under multiple contracts. HKIAC decided on a prima facie basis to proceed with the arbitration, considering the connections between the agreements and the nature of HKIAC’s role under the UNCITRAL Rules and the 2015 Procedures.

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CD2022/07/03

Date of Decision: May 2018

Abstract 

HKIAC decided to refer this matter to a sole arbitrator in light of the amount in dispute (approximately HK$18 million or US$2.3 million) and the complexity of the case under the 2013 UNICTRAL Arbitration Rules (“UNCITAL Rules”) and the 2015 HKIAC Procedures for the Administration of Arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“2015 Procedures”).  

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2014 HKIAC Domestic Arbitration Rules (1 Case)

CD2022/03/07

Date of Decision: June 2019

Abstract 

HKIAC did not proceed with the Claimant’s request to appoint an arbitrator under the 2014 HKIAC Domestic Arbitration Rules (“Domestic Rules”) in the circumstances where the relevant contracts contained no reference to the Domestic Rules.

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2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (11 Cases)

CD2021/12/04

Date of Decision: February 2021

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC decided on a prima facie basis to proceed with the arbitration under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”) in circumstances where (1) the arbitration clause contained express references to HKIAC and its “rules and practice”; (2) the Claimant commenced the arbitration under the 2018 Rules; and (3) the Respondents had not made a final choice of institution or rules where it was empowered to do so under the arbitration clause. HKIAC concluded that there was a possibility that an arbitration agreement under the 2018 Rules might exist.

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CD2021/12/05

Date of Decision: August 2019

Abstract 

In a borderline case, HKIAC considered that the dispute was suitable for either the expedited or regular procedure under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”). However, considering the number and nature of the issues raised by the parties and the feasibility of a three-member tribunal to determine all issues within the time limit under the expedited procedure, HKIAC decided not to apply the expedited procedure and left it to the arbitral tribunal to adopt an appropriate procedure for the case.

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CD2021/12/06

Date of Decision: June 2019

Abstract 

In this case commenced under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“HKIAC Rules”), HKIAC decided not to proceed with the arbitration in circumstances where the arbitration clause referred only to the ICC Arbitration Rules (“ICC Rules”) and there was no indication that the parties had agreed to amend the arbitration clause to provide for arbitration administered by HKIAC under the HKIAC Rules. 

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CD2021/12/07

Date of Decision: June 2019

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC determined the number of arbitrators to be one, considering the amount in dispute and complexity of the case, under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”).

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CD2022/03/01

Date of Decision: February 2021

Abstract

HKIAC did not proceed with this arbitration under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”) where the arbitration clause provided for “arbitration in Hong Kong in accordance with its rules”. HKIAC considered that the test for proceeding with the arbitration under the 2018 Rules was not satisfied.

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CD2022/03/10

Date of Decision: April 2019

Abstract 

HKIAC joined an additional party to an arbitration pursuant to Article 27 of the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”) where the additional party was the guarantor of an alleged loan under the underlying contract and a signatory to the relevant arbitration agreement.

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CD2022/07/01

Date of Decision: May 2019

Abstract

In this case that was commenced as a single arbitration under three contracts pursuant to Article 29 of the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”), HKIAC decided to refer the case to three arbitrators having considered a range of factors including the circumstances where two of the contracts provided for three arbitrators and the other contract did not specify the number of arbitrators.

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CD2022/07/06

Date of Decision: July 2019

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC initially applied the expedited procedure under Article 42.1(b) of the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”) based on an agreement between the Claimant and a director of the Respondent, whose consent was later called into question by the Respondent’s court appointed receiver. Having considered the circumstances surrounding the director’s consent, the serious and complex allegations that led to the subsequent appointment of the Respondent’s receiver, and the arbitral tribunal’s preference, HKIAC disapplied the expedited procedure under Article 42.3 of the 2018 Rules.

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CD2022/07/07

Date of Decision: November 2019

Abstract

In this case, HKIAC decided not to grant an application for expedited procedure under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”), given the uncertainty in the amount in dispute, complexity of the case, and the feasibility of a three-member tribunal to conclude this arbitration within the six-month time limit under the expedited procedure. 

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CD2022/07/08

Date of Decision: November 2020

Abstract 

In this case, the Respondent requested HKIAC to disapply the expedited procedure that was previously granted on the basis of alleged new circumstances pursuant to Article 42.3 of the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”). Having found that the substance of the alleged new circumstances was already raised and considered by HKIAC at the time of applying the expedited procedure and that the timetable adopted by the arbitral tribunal under the expedited procedure sufficiently addressed the Respondent’s procedural preference for dealing with the “new circumstances”, HKIAC rejected the Respondent’s request for disapplication and continued the expedited procedure.

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CD2022/07/10

Date of Decision: August 2019 

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC decided not to grant an application for expedited procedure under the 2018 HKIAC Administered Arbitration Rules (“2018 Rules”), having considered the method of calculating the amount in dispute, the nature of the issues raised, and procedural fairness. 

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Arbitration Ordinance (Cap. 609) (2 Cases)

CD2021/12/15

Date of Decision: June 2019

Abstract 

In this case, HKIAC proceeded with a request for determination of the number of arbitrators under the Arbitration Ordinance (Cap 609) (the “Arbitration Ordinance”) on the basis that, prima facie, the arbitration clause of another charterparty was incorporated into the alleged charterparty giving rise to this arbitration.

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CD2022/03/05

Date of Decision: December 2016

Abstract

HKIAC proceeded to appoint an arbitrator in an ad hoc arbitration on the basis that Hong Kong was the implied seat of arbitration, where the arbitration clause did not specify the seat or designate an appointing authority.

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