Guest Blog: Chief Justice Bathurst’s launch of Asian Law books

[Ed: The Hon TF Bathurst AC, Chief Justice of New South Wales, kindly launched two Asian law books at a CAPLUS seminar hosted by Herbert Smith Freehills in Sydney on 28 November 2019: ‘Contract Law in Japan‘ by Hiroo Sono, Luke Nottage, Kenji Saigusa and Andrew Pardieck (Wolters Kluwer 2019) and ‘ASEAN Consumer Law Harmonisation and Cooperation‘ by Luke Nottage, Justin Malbon, Jeannie Paterson and Caron Beaton-Wells (CUP 2019). Other discussants included Sydney Business School Adjunct Professor Donald Robertson (expert in international contract law) and Sydney Business School Professor Gail Pearson (expert in comparative consumer law). The Chief Justice’s remarks are uploaded on the Supreme Court website and are reproduced below with permission.]

1. I would like to begin by acknowledging the traditional custodians of the land on which we meet, the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, and pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.  It took a long time for our legal system to recognise the unique connection with this land which they have under their ancient law and customs.  When it did, a door was opened to a greater understanding which had the potential to enrich both traditions and heal some of the wounds within our community inflicted by more unjust times.

2. In this way, our history demonstrates, rather starkly, the necessity for a dialogue between different systems of law.1  A dialogue offers us the opportunity to take a glimpse into the workings of an unfamiliar system, and, in so doing, see our own in a different light.  It may help us better appreciate the shortcomings and deficiencies of our own approach to important legal questions, and benefit from an understanding of how others have approached them.  In short, it is never enough to compare two systems simply by pointing out the differences.  It is necessary to go further, and reflect on how and why those systems differ, and what they can learn from each other.

3. The two books which we have gathered to launch today are fine examples of scholarly works within this tradition.  Neither could be described solely as a work of “comparative law”, since neither has a narrow, solely comparative focus.  For example, Contract Law in Japan2 seeks to present Japanese contract law largely on its own terms, although this inevitably involves occasional reference to its French, German, and even American progenitors.  In the same vein, ASEAN Consumer Law3 aims to treat the consumer law of ASEAN as a unified, or at least, unifying, entity, rather than as a simple agglomeration of the laws of its member states – although, as I quickly learned while reading, this is something much easier said than done.  

4. On their own merits, both works would stand as comprehensive guides to the substantive law of the jurisdictions which they cover.  However, it would be disingenuous for me to deny that both works invite and encourage the uninitiated reader, such as myself, to whom the contract law of Japan and the consumer law of the members of ASEAN has long remained a mystery, to draw their own comparisons with the law in their home jurisdiction, which in my case is, of course, Australia.  In my brief remarks this evening, I would like to touch on some of the connections and contrasts between Australian, Japanese, and ASEAN law which appear from both works.  To make such a large task feasible given the scope of the coverage in each book, I will focus on only two themes which I think have particular relevance to Australian law at present.

5. The first theme is concerned with the extent to which it is appropriate for a legal system to define causes of action, or otherwise enforce or restrict legal rights, based on broad, normative standards of conduct.  In Australian law, we might take as an example the statutory prohibitions on “conduct that is, in all the circumstances, unconscionable”.4  No further explanation of the nature of “unconscionable” conduct is given, although the legislation does list a sizeable number of factors which might be relevant.5  Ultimately, it is left to the court to determine whether the conduct in a particular case is “against conscience by reference to the norms of society”,6 or more prosaically, whether it was contrary to “accepted community standards”.7  

6. Now, while this does not simply amount to allowing a judge to proscribe conduct which they deem to be “unfair” or “unjust”,8 it may be thought to come closer than many other areas of law permit.  We can see the consequences in the recent decision of the High Court in ASIC v Kobelt,9 where the Court split 4:3 on the issue of whether the provision of an informal system of credit by the owner of a general store in a remote, Indigenous community was “unconscionable”.  The breadth of the standard makes it difficult to attribute the difference in opinion between the members of the Court to any legal error.  Rather, the distinction between the majority and the minority appears to lie in their contrasting views about what the “norms of society” or “accepted community standards” actually require.10  Put this way, difference in opinion ceases to be unexpected, and perhaps, becomes inevitable.11

7. This creates something of a dilemma for the law.  If the “norms of society” or “accepted community standards” are so subtle and esoteric in their application to a particular set of circumstances that even some of the most experienced legal minds in the country cannot agree, then ought the final decision to really remain in their hands?  In these circumstances, it would not be out of the question to believe that the legitimacy of the conduct should really be the subject of consideration by the representatives of the people in the legislature.  A provision which is clearly directed to address a particular situation puts beyond doubt that a matter has been considered by the legislature.  It defines its own standard by which the relevant conduct is to be judged.  To be sure, any statutory provision may be capable of giving rise to its own difficulties of interpretation, but at least these problems are susceptible to the application of more familiar legal reasoning.12  

8. It seems to me that this is an approach which has, to some extent, been adopted by Japanese contract law in analogous circumstances.  Rather than relying on a broadly-expressed criterion of “unconscionable conduct” to define the situations in which a court would be prepared to set aside a consumer contract, it instead states the particular circumstances which will give rise to such a claim.13  One such example, which seems to reflect the narrower, general law doctrine of “unconscionable conduct” in this country,14 is where “a business stirs up [the] excessive anxiety of a consumer without enough ability to judge due to [their] old age or mental disorder about [their] health or living conditions”.15  There are other similar examples, which spell out in some detail the types of conduct which are not regarded as acceptable business practice in Japan when it comes to consumer contracts.16  

9. It is worth noting that these exceptions for consumer contracts were introduced even though Article 90 of the Japanese Civil Code provides that a contract is void if it is “against public policy”,17 perhaps a phrase of even wider import than “unconscionable conduct”.18  Even though the express exceptions for consumer contracts could very well have been analysed as being “against public policy”,19 it was still felt necessary to craft particular provisions to deal with these situations.  It could well be thought that such an approach improves certainty, and promotes greater democratic legitimacy.  

10. While there can be a need to resort to general standards of conduct to ensure that unforeseen and undesirable activities do not escape the supervision of the law, it seems to me that there is much to be said for resisting the temptation to make these standards the “first port of call” for regulation.20  I think the Japanese approach to the grounds on which a consumer contract may be set aside for what we might describe as “unconscionable conduct” provides an interesting perspective on this issue.  There is much more that could be said about this topic, and, no doubt, Japanese law might have difficulties of its own with overbroad standards of conduct.  But the utility of the comparison should be apparent.  It illustrates the different approaches which may be taken to a complex issue, and suggests alternative ways of resolving them.  

11. The second theme I would like to touch on this evening is concerned with the role which regulatory bodies ought to play in policing and enforcing what might broadly be described as “consumer protection legislation”.  Again, this is something that has been a live issue in Australia since the Hayne Royal Commission delivered its Interim Report in 2018, which strongly criticised how ASIC approached the enforcement of the financial services legislation for which it was responsible.21  The Report noted that ASIC’s “starting point” for responding to misconduct appeared to have been to attempt to resolve the issues by agreement and negotiation with the entity concerned,22 with a focus on remediation of harm caused rather than sanction for the misconduct itself.23  In words which bear repeating in full, the Report stated:

“This cannot be the starting point for a conduct regulator.  When contravening conduct comes to its attention, the regulator must always ask whether it can make a case that there has been a breach and, if it can, then ask why it would not be in the public interest to bring proceedings to penalise the breach.  Laws are to be obeyed.  Penalties are prescribed for failure to obey the law because society expects and requires obedience to the law.”24

12. The rhetoric here is certainly characteristic of the direct and forthright attitude of the Commissioner.  It is compelling and persuasive, with seemingly inexorable logic.  However, I think it has somewhat directed attention away from an important anterior question:  to what extent was ASIC conceived to be a “conduct regulator” prior to the Royal Commission?  It must be admitted that now, in light of the Commission, public opinion overwhelmingly favours ASIC taking an active role as a “conduct regulator”.  And ASIC has taken heed.  Shortly after the publication of the Interim Report, in response to its criticisms, ASIC adopted what has been compendiously described as the “Why Not Litigate?” approach,25 placing enforcement squarely at the forefront of its responsibilities, although it has been quick to point out that this is by no means equivalent to a “litigate first, and ask questions later” approach for any breach, no matter how trivial.26  Was this always intended to be how ASIC operated?

13. Interesting light is shed upon this question by Mr Alan Cameron AO, a former Chair of ASIC and its predecessor from 1993 to 2000, in an address he delivered some months before the delivery of the Interim Report,27 although at a time when many of the shortcomings in the financial services sector had already been exposed in hearings before the Commission.  He reflected on the fact that, from its inception, ASIC has never seen itself solely as an enforcement body.  It has also regarded itself as having a “market facilitation role”,28 and, I might add, with some justification, because this objective is still reflected prominently in its enabling legislation today.29  Indeed, even as late as 2014, in a “Statement of Expectations for ASIC” published by the Government, enforcement was not mentioned as part of its “key role”, or even as one of its objectives.30  

14. It is striking the degree to which the same concerns and ambiguity about the proper role of a regulator appear in the topics discussed in ASEAN Consumer Law.  While no single chapter discusses the work of consumer protection regulators as its primary focus, it is a background theme which recurs with surprising frequency in other chapters when discussing the efficacy of the substantive law.  Importantly, one gets the sense that this results from much the same concerns which have motivated the discussion about the role of ASIC as a regulator in Australia:  despite the introduction of relatively strong protections for consumers “on the books” in most members of ASEAN in recent years,31 there has been little tangible evidence that these protections have translated into better outcomes for consumers.  

15. Even for those countries which have had consumer protection legislation for some time, there is often a dearth of filings in courts attempting to utilise these laws.32  Thailand appears to be an exception to this trend, but even then, there are few cases in which a consumer protection claim has proceeded to reported judgment.  Most are settled.33  Part of the reason for the slow uptake might be attributed to the lack of an effective and well-resourced regulator to educate the public about their rights as consumers, and where necessary, to step in and take appropriate enforcement action.34  In many countries, it falls to consumer advocacy NGOs to raise awareness about consumer protection issues, in the absence of better-resourced government programs.35  It should be no surprise that Thailand, with its higher filing rate, is also the country with the greatest consumer NGO activity.36  

16. Now, it may be accepted that there are significant differences between the level of economic development between most members of ASEAN and Australia.  Nevertheless, the experience of ASEAN ought to remind us that legislation needs to be coupled with an appropriate enforcement strategy if it is to be effective.  Introducing legislation to prohibit undesirable conduct is one thing.  Translating that legislation into practical outcomes for consumers is another.  And, ultimately, it is that second step which proves difficult.  As we have seen, perhaps there were grounds for believing that ASIC’s former approach was too lenient.  But it is a matter of balance.  There is always a risk that things may swing too far in the other direction.  

17. The themes I have discussed this evening are just two small examples of the way in which contemporary legal debate in Australia can be seen to overlap with those in other jurisdictions.  This focus might have given the mistaken impression that I believe that comparative law is only useful for what it can tell us about our own system of law.  This could not be further from the truth.  But, I firmly believe that the first step in motivating policy-makers and lawyers to engage with comparative law is to highlight the connections and similarities which we have with other systems.  It is only then that we can demonstrate that comparison opens a door to a dialogue from which both systems can benefit.

18. Both of the works being launched tonight are excellent examples of how such scholarship can incisively deconstruct unfamiliar legal systems and make them more accessible to a wider audience.  And, what is more, each clearly exposes and explains the challenges which each system faces on its own terms.  This is an admirable achievement, and one for which the authors deserve our congratulations.

19. Thank you.


1  See also Uwe Kischel, Comparative Law (Oxford University Press, 2019) 46 ff.

2  Hiroo Sono et al, Contract Law in Japan (Wolters Kluwer, 2019).

3  Luke Nottage et al, ASEAN Consumer Law Harmonisation and Cooperation: Achievements and Challenges (Cambridge University Press, 2019).  

Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) sch 2 (‘Australian Consumer Law’) s 21(1); Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 (Cth) (‘ASIC Act’)s 12CB(1).

Australian Consumer Law s 22(1); ASIC Act s 12CC(1).

ACCC v Lux Distributors Pty Ltd [2013] FCAFC 90 at [41] (Allsop CJ, Jacobson and Gordon JJ); ACCC v Medibank Private Ltd [2018] FCAFC 235at [239] (Beach J); ASIC v Kobelt [2019] HCA 18 at [57] (Kiefel CJ and Bell J), [87] (Gageler J).

Ipstar Australia Pty Ltd v APS Satellite Pty Ltd [2018] NSWCA 15 at [195] (Bathurst CJ); ASIC v Kobelt [2019] HCA 18 at [59] (Kiefel CJ and Bell J).

Attorney-General (NSW) v World Best Holdings Ltd (2005) 63 NSWLR 557 at 583 [120] (Spigelman CJ); cf ACCC v C G Berbatis Holdings Pty Ltd (2003) 214 CLR 51 at 64 [11] (Gleeson CJ).

9  [2019] HCA 18.

10  Ibid [75]–[79] (Kiefel CJ and Bell J), [101]–[111] (Gageler J), [124]–[129] (Keane J), [235]–[240] (Nettle and Gordon JJ), [296]–[302] (Edelman J).

11  Ibid [95] (Gageler J).

12  Commonwealth Bank of Australia v Kojic (2016) 249 FCR 421 at 436–7 [58]–[59] (Allsop CJ), 442–3 [85]–[87] (Edelman J); cf ASIC v Kobelt [2019] HCA 18 at [267]–[268] (Edelman J).

13  Sono et al (n 2) 79 [168] ff.

14  See Thorne v Kennedy (2017) 263 CLR 85 at 102–3 [37]–[39] (Kiefel CJ, Bell, Gageler, Keane and Edelman JJ). 

15  Sono et al (n 2) 80, quoting art 4(3)(v) of the Consumer Contract Act (Japan); cf Blomley v Ryan (1956) 99 CLR 362 at 405 (Fullagar J).

16  See also Sono et al (n 2) 83–4.

17  Civil Code (Japan) art 90.

18  Cf Sono et al (n 2) 81–3 .

19  See ibid 83 [182]–[183].

20  Attorney-General (NSW) v World Best Holdings Ltd (2005) 63 NSWLR 557 at 583 [121] (Spigelman CJ).

21  See Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, Interim Report (September 2018) vol 1, ch 8.

22  Ibid 277.

23  Ibid 296.

24  Ibid 277 (emphasis original).

25  Australian Securities and Investments Commission, ‘Update on Implementation of Royal Commission Recommendations’ (Paper, February 2019) 3.

26  See, eg, Commissioner Sean Hughes, ‘ASIC’s Approach to Enforcement after the Royal Commission’ (Speech, 36th Annual Conference of the Banking and Financial Services Law Association, 30 August 2019).  

27  Alan Cameron, Reflections on Regulators, Without Casting Aspersions’ in Pamela Hanrahan and Ashley Black (eds), Contemporary Issues in Corporate and Competition Law (LexisNexis, 2019) 165.  The speech was originally delivered on 26 June 2018.

28  Ibid 167.

29  ASIC Act s 1(2).  

30  Australian Government, ‘Statement of Expectations for ASIC’ (April 2014) <>; see also Cameron (n 26) 173.

31  See Nottage et al (n 3) chs 3–4.

32  Ibid 163–73,.

33  Ibid 167.

34  Ibid 240–1, 246–7.

35  Ibid 365–6.

36  Ibid 165–7.

New Frontiers in International Arbitration for the Asia-Pacific Region (9): Arbitration and Protest in Hong Kong

Guest post written by: A/Prof Jie (Jeanne) Huang and Winston Ma (Sydney Law School)

Following the promulgation of the judicial interpretation by the Supreme People’s Court (“SPC”) on 26 September 2019, the Arrangement Concerning Mutual Assistance in Court-ordered Interim Measures in Aid of Arbitral Proceedings by the Courts of the Mainland and of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (“Arrangement”) signed by Mainland China and Hong Kong on 2 April 2019 came into effect in Mainland China from 1 October 2019. This Arrangement provides mutual recognition and enforcement of interim measures between Hong Kong and Mainland China. It has generated broad coverage.[1] This post tries to add to the discussion by providing a note on the first case decided under the Arrangement on 8 October 2019, and more broadly, some reflections on the continuing protests in Hong Kong and arbitration under “One Country, Two Systems’.

Mutual recognition and enforcement of interim measures between Hong Kong and Mainland China

Hong Kong Arbitration Ordinance has long been allowing parties to arbitral proceedings in any place to apply to the courts of Hong Kong for interim measures. Interim measures include injunction and other measures for the purpose of maintaining or restoring the status quo pending determination of the dispute; taking action that would prevent, or refraining from taking action that is likely to cause, current or imminent harm or prejudice to the arbitral proceedings; preserving assets; or preserving evidence that may be relevant and material to the resolution of the dispute. However, in contrast to the liberal Hong Kong counterpart, people’s courts in Mainland China are conservative. Chinese law limits interim measures to property preservation, evidence preservation and conduct preservation. More important, Mainland courts generally only enforce interim measures in support of arbitration administered by domestic or foreign-related arbitration institutions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). This is because Article 272 of Chinese Civil Procedure Law provides that where a party applies for a preservation measure, the foreign-related arbitral institution of PRC shall submit the party’s application to the intermediate people’s court at the place of domicile of the respondent or at the place where the respondent’s property is located. Article 28 of Chinese Arbitration Law states that if one of the parties applies for property preservation, the arbitration commission shall submit to a people’s court the application of the party in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Civil Procedure Law. Article 10 of Chinese Arbitration Law restricts arbitration institutions to those registered with the judicial administrative department of the relevant province, autonomous region or municipalities directly under the Central Government.[2]

There are few exceptions to the Mainland conservative approach. First, since 2017, ad hoc arbitration has been permitted in China’s pilot free trade zones.[3] Therefore, Mainland courts are likely to issue interim measures in support of such ad hoc arbitration. Second, a party to a maritime arbitration seated outside of Mainland China can apply for property preservation to the Chinese maritime court of the place where the property is located.[4] However, the property to be preserved was limited to vessels, cargos carried by a vessel, and fuel and supplies of a vessel.[5]

The third exception is created by the recent Arrangement. Arbitral proceedings commenced both before and after 1 October 2019 are potentially caught by the Arrangement, under which property, evidence and conduct preservation orders could be granted by the courts in Mainland China to assist the Hong Kong arbitration.

The scope of the Arrangement confines to arbitral proceedings seated in Hong Kong and administered by institutions or permanent offices meeting the criteria under Article 2 of the Arrangement. Six qualified institutions have been listed on 26 September 2019, being Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (“HKIAC”), ICC Hong Kong, CIETAC Hong Kong, Hong Kong Maritime Arbitration Group, eBRAM International Online Dispute Resolution Centre and South China International Arbitration Centre (Hong Kong). Future applications will also be considered and the list may be subject to alteration.

Articles 3-5 of the Arrangement set out the procedural requirements for applying to the courts in Mainland China for interim measures. Since time is of essence, application can be made by a party to the arbitration directly to the relevant Mainland Chinese court before an arbitration is accepted by an arbitration institution.[6] If the arbitration has been accepted, the application should be submitted by the arbitration institution or representative office.[7]

Article 8 of the Arrangement further reflects the importance of timeliness by demanding the requested court to make a decision after examining the application “expeditiously”. Nevertheless, the Arrangement is silent on the specific time limit applicable to the court’s examination process. Pursuant to Article 93 of the Chinese Civil Procedure Law, the court is to make an order within 48 hours after receiving an application for property preservation prior to the commencement of arbitration; Furthermore, Article 4 of the Provisions of the SPC on Several Issues concerning the Handling of Property Preservation Cases by the People’s Courts demands the court to make an order within 5 days after the security is provided, and within 48 hours in cases of emergency.

The first case decided under the Arrangement demonstrates how “expeditiously” a people’s court can make a decision. In the morning of 8 October 2019, the Shanghai Maritime Court received a property preservation application submitted by HKIAC. In this case, the arbitration applicant is a maritime company located in Hong Kong and the respondent is a company in Shanghai. They concluded a voyage charter party which stated that the applicant should provide a vessel to transport coal owned by the respondent from Indonesia to Shanghai. However, the respondent rescinded the charter party and the applicant claimed damages. Based on the charter party, they started an ad hoc arbitration and ultimately settled the case. According to the settlement agreement, the respondent should pay the applicant USD 180,000. However, the respondent did not make the payment as promised. Consequently, the respondent brought an arbitration at the HKIAC according to the arbitration clause in the settlement agreement. Invoking the Arrangement, through the HKIAC, the applicant applied to the Shanghai Maritime People’s Court to seize and freeze the respondent’s bank account and other assets. The Shanghai Court formed a collegial bench and issued the property preservation measure on the same date according to the Arrangement and Chinese Civil Procedure Law.

Protests in Hong Kong

As the first and so far the only jurisdiction with the special Arrangement through which parties to arbitration can directly apply to Mainland Chinese courts for interim measures, Hong Kong has been conferred an irreplaceable advantage while jockeying to be the most preferred arbitration seat for cases related to Chinese parties. Arbitration that is ad hoc or seated outside Hong Kong cannot enjoy the benefits of the Arrangement. Parties to an arbitration seated in Hong Kong are encouraged to select one of the listed institutions to take advantage of the Arrangement. Meanwhile, the Arrangement also attracts prominent international arbitration institutions to establish permanent offices in Hong Kong.

One may argue that the Arrangement is the necessary consequence of the “One Country, Two Systems” principle and the increasingly close judicial assistance between Mainland China and Hong Kong. Especially in the context of China’s national strategy to develop the Greater Bay Area, the notion of “one country, two systems, three jurisdictions” makes Hong Kong the only common-law jurisdiction to deal with China-related disputes.[8]

However, to what extent may the recent protests negatively impact on the arbitration industry in Hong Kong? Notably, London and Paris have also experienced legal uncertainly (Brexit in the UK) and protests (Yellow vests movement in France) in recent years. Nevertheless, the Hong Kong situation is more severe than its western counterparts in two aspects. First, currently, the protestors have impacted on the traffic inside Hong Kong. Last month, they even blocked the Hong Kong airport. It is not surprising that parties may want to move the hearings outside of Hong Kong just for the convenience of traffic, if the arbitration is still seated in Hong Kong. Second, the continuation of protests and the uncertainty of the Chinese government’s counter-measures may threaten parties’ confidence in choosing Hong Kong as the seat for arbitration. The Arrangement brings an irreplaceable advantage to Hong Kong to arbitrate cases related with Chinese parties. However, this significance should not be over-assessed. This is because by choosing a broad discovery and evidence rule, parties and tribunals have various means to deal with the situation where a party wants to hide a key evidence. Arbitration awards can be recognized and enforced in all jurisdictions ratified the New York Convention. Therefore, the value of the Arrangement is mainly for cases where the losing party only has assets in Mainland China for enforcement.

The flourish of arbitration in Hong Kong is closely related to Mainland China. However, Hong Kong, if losing its social stability due to the protests, will lose its arbitration business gradually. In the Chinese Records of the Grand Historian (Shiji by Han dynasty official Sima Qian), there is a famous idiom called “cheng ye xiao he bai ye xiao he”.[9] It means the key to one’s success is also one’s undoing. It is the hope that Mainland China and Hong Kong can find a solution quickly so that the arbitration industry in Hong Kong can continue to be prosperous. This is more important than the implementation of the Arrangement.

Guest Authors:
– Jie (Jeanne) Huang is an associate professor at the University of Sydney Law School, Australia,
– Winston Ma is an LLB student at the University of Sydney Law School, Australia

Reproduced (with minor edits) with permission from:

[1] E.g.

[2] There are different opinions regarding whether Article 10 and 28 of Chinese Arbitration Law restrict the interim measures to arbitration administered by Chinese arbitration institutions. See the judgment of [2016] E 72 Cai Bao No. 427 issued by Wuhan Maritime Court. In this case, the Ocean Eleven Shipping Corporation initiated an arbitration in HKIAC against Lao Kai Yuan Mining Sole Co., Ltd. The applicant was a company in South Korea and the respondent a Chinese company. The parties had disputes over a voyage charter party. In order to ensure the enforcement of the coming award in Mainland China, the applicant applied to Wuhan Maritime Court to freeze USD 300,000 in the respondent’s bank account or seizure, impound or freeze other equivalent assets. The People’s Insurance Company provided equivalent insurance for the applicant’s property preservation application. Wuhan Maritime Court permitted the property preservation application according to Article 28 of Chinese Arbitration Law and Article 103 of the Civil Procedure Law. However, this case is inconsistent with majority cases where Chinese courts rejected to issue interim measures for arbitration administered by ad hoc or arbitration institutions registered outside of Mainland China.

[3] SPC Opinions on Providing Judicial Safeguard for the Building of Pilot Free Trade Zones, Fa Fa [2016] No. 34,

[4] Art. 21(2) of the Interpretation of the SPC on the Application of the Special Maritime Procedure Law of the PRC, Fa Shi [2003] No. 3.

[5] Ibid., art. 18.

[6] Art. 3 of the Arrangement.

[7] Ibid., art. 2.

[8] China has made the economic integration between the Grater Bay Area a national strategy. The Greater Bay Area includes Hong Kong, Macao and Guangdong Province