Hong Kong—court powers in support of arbitration
Produced in partnership with Amanda Lees and Tiffany Lee of Simmons & Simmons (Hong Kong & Singapore)
Hong Kong—court powers in support of arbitration

The following Arbitration practice note Produced in partnership with Amanda Lees and Tiffany Lee of Simmons & Simmons (Hong Kong & Singapore) provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Hong Kong—court powers in support of arbitration
  • General principle—minimal interference
  • Scope of the court's powers
  • Emergency and interim relief
  • Interim measures arrangement—Hong Kong and Mainland China
  • Anti-suit and anti-arbitration injunctions
  • Extensions of time
  • Time for commencement of the arbitration
  • Time for the tribunal to make its award
  • Time to apply to set aside an award
  • More...

UNDER REVIEW: This Practice Note is under review in light of Dickson Valora Group v Fan Ji Qian [2019] HKCU 638.

General principle—minimal interference

The primary aim of the Arbitration Ordinance, Chapter 609 (AO) is to ensure party autonomy in the arbitral process with minimum court intervention. One of the principles of the AO is that the court should interfere in the arbitration of a dispute only as expressly provided for in the ordinance. The AO gives effect to article 5 of the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration (the Model Law), which provides that the court shall not intervene in arbitration proceedings except where so provided in the law.

Under the AO, the Hong Kong courts have been granted certain powers which they can use to support the arbitral process. In particular, under AO, ss 45 and 60, the Hong Kong courts have independent jurisdictions to order interim measures of protection and to make orders in relation to property for arbitrations seated in or outside Hong Kong. The parties to an arbitration agreement may also expressly opt for the provisions under AO, Sch 2, which gives the court greater powers, including the power to order the consolidation of arbitrations and to determine preliminary questions of law. (The provisions in Schedule 2 automatically apply to some domestic and construction arbitrations entered into before 1 June 2017

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