The China International Commercial Court (CICC) in 2018
The China International Commercial Court (CICC) in 2018
2021/3/24 10:49:27  点击率[546]  评论[0]
【法宝引证码】
    【学科类别】国际商法
    【出处】China International Commercial Court
    【写作时间】2019年
    【中文关键字】
    【英文关键字】China International Commercial Court; 2018
    【全文】

    In the principle of “achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration”, the First International Commercial Court and the Second International Commercial Court of the Supreme People's Court of China (SPC) were established and put into operation on June 29, 2018. They began court sessions on May 29 and 31, 2019 respectively, once again attracting global attention. Over the past year, the China International Commercial Court (CICC) of SPC has thrived.
     
    Operate from a strategically advantageous position
     
    “Chinese solution” for commercial disputes
     
    Under the backdrop of the deepening development of the Belt and Road Initiative, foreign-related cases are not only the window of China's judicial system, but also the barometer of China's open economic development. With the continuous advancement of economic globalization, exchanges between countries are becoming more frequent, and there are more foreign-related commercial disputes. Reportedly, from 2013 to 2017, the People's Courts at various levels had tried and concluded more than 200,000 foreign-related civil and commercial cases, which more than doubled in past 5 years. As a new platform for resolving international commercial disputes, the CICC has shouldered great responsibility ever since its establishment.
     
    On January 23, 2018, President Xi Jinping held the session of Central Leading Group for Deepening Overall Reform, examining and approving the Opinion Concerning the Establishment of the Belt and Road International Commercial Dispute Resolution Mechanism and Institutions (hereinafter referred to as the “Opinion”), which clearly stated that China will establish an international commercial court, i.e. the CICC.
     
    To ensure the principled establishment of the CICC, Zhou Qiang, President of SPC held the plenary meeting of the Adjudication Committee of SPC on June 25, 2018, examining the Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Several Issues Regarding the Establishment of the International Commercial Court (hereinafter referred to as the “Provisions”)。
     
    On June 29, 2018, the First International Commercial Court and the Second International Commercial Court of the SPC were inaugurated in Shenzhen and Xi'an respectively, and officially started to operate.
     
    Once the cornerstone was set, further construction followed.
     
    On August 24, 2018, the SPC issued the Decision on the Establishment of International Commercial Expert Committee. 31 experts from 14 countries and regions strived together to establish a robust mechanism for resolving international commercial disputes.
     
    On December 5, 2018, the SPC convened a symposium on “Diversified Resolution Mechanism for International Commercial Disputes”, and officially promulgated three regulatory documents: Notice of the Supreme People's Court on Inclusion of the First Group of International Commercial Arbitration and Mediation Institutions in the “One-stop” Diversified International Commercial Dispute Resolution Mechanism (hereinafter referred to as “Notice”), Procedure Rules for the China International Commercial Court of the Supreme People's Court (For Trial Implementation) (hereinafter referred to as “Trial Procedure Rules”) and Working Rules of the International Commercial Expert Committee of the Supreme People's Court (For Trial Implementation)。
     
    According to the Notice, several arbitration and mediation institutions are included in the first batch of “one-stop” mechanism for resolving international commercial disputes, including five international commercial arbitration institutions, namely China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission, Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration, Shanghai International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission, Beijing International Arbitration Center(Beijing Arbitration Commission) and China Maritime Arbitration Commission, as well as two international commercial mediation institutions including China Council for the Promotion of International Trade Mediation Center and Shanghai Commercial Mediation Center. These provide a clear institutional safeguard for the establishment of a “one-stop” mechanism for resolving international commercial disputes.
     
    More In-depth Work
     
    Another “experimental field” of the rule of law
     
    “It is manifested from last year's work that each step, from the CICC's establishment to its actual operation, was taken seriously and solidly to achieve steady advancement. The CICC shall provide high-quality and practical legal services and safeguards for the Belt and Road Initiative,” said Luo Dongchuan, Vice President of the SPC in an interview.
     
    Establishment of the CICC opened up yet another “experimental field” for the reform of the judicial system in the new era. In this “experimental field”, the CICC continues to work on judicial reform, explore new ideas for international commercial dispute resolution, and implement new measures for international commercial dispute resolution.
     
    In accordance with Article 11 of the Provisions, the CICC is committed to supporting the development and improvement of diversified dispute resolution mechanisms (including arbitration, mediation and litigation) by establishing a “three-in-one”, one-stop platform for resolving international commercial disputes. “In other international commercial courts, there is only one way to resolve the dispute: litigation; whereas parties enter the CICC, they can choose to resolve the dispute through mediation, arbitration or litigation.” Shen Sibao, Expert Member of the International Commercial Expert Committee and Director of Institute of International Business Law at University of International Business and Economics, added that the one-stop dispute resolution mechanism of mediation, arbitration and litigation reflected the unique Chinese wisdom of the CICC.
     
    The Opinion advocates the system of international commercial expert committee for the first time, and welcomes the participation of legal experts from different countries and regions within the “Belt and Road” in seeking the best option for dispute resolution by applying their respective strengths in foreign law ascertainment and dispute resolution, giving full play to their advantages and potentials.
     
    Luo Dongchuan remarked, “Internationalization is the prominent characteristic of the CICC, which pioneered the system of international commercial expert committee composed of legal experts from all over the world who specialize in international law and their own domestic laws. This joint participation in international commercial dispute resolution fully embodies the principle of 'achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration'.” Luo hopes that the joint acumen of legal experts from all countries will maximize the professionalization, internationalization and neutralization in dispute resolution, providing Chinese and foreign parties with more options for dispute resolution.
     
    Ascertainment of foreign laws has always been a difficult problem that may undermine trials of cases involving foreign elements. The Provisions listed a series of methods of such ascertainment, and provided open regulations for other reasonable methods (such as ascertainment via internet), thus promoting flexibility and feasibility, and ensuring that ascertainment of foreign laws can be done more quickly and conveniently, which increases trial efficiency.
     
    In addition, the CICC has carried out fruitful explorations on issues of jurisdiction, evidence and reasoning of judgments in relation to international commercial cases. This was an innovative breakthrough in multiple institutions and yielded a pioneering effect as a role model in the judicial field.
     
    Fast but steady
     
    Open hearing of the CICC's first case
     
    On April 29, 2019, the First International Commercial Court of SPC held a pre-trial conference concerning a product liability dispute between the plaintiff Guangdong Bencao Medicine Group Co., Ltd. and the defendant Bruschettini S.R.L. in accordance with Trial Procedure Rules. This was the CICC's first pre-trial conference.
     
    The Collegiate Bench hearing the above case consists of 5 CICC judges: Zhang Yongjian, Gao Xiaoli, Xi Xiangyang, Sun Xiangzhuang and Ding Guangyu. Zhang Yongjian, head of the First International Commercial Court and judge of the CICC, served as the presiding judge and presided over the pre-trial conference with Xi Xiangyang, member of the Collegiate Bench and judge of the CICC.
     
    The two parties failed to reach an agreement on mediation; a public hearing was therefore held on May 31, 2019 by the First International Commercial Court.
     
    On May 15, 2019, the Second International Commercial Court of SPC held pre-trial conferences for two cases concerning dispute on shareholder qualification conformation dispute: One was among the plaintiff Ruoychai International Group Co., Ltd. and the defendant Red Bull Vitamin Drink Co., Ltd. and the third party Red Bull Vitamin Drink (Thailand) Co., Ltd.; another was among the plaintiff Ruoychai International Group Co., Ltd. and the defendant Red Bull Vitamin Drink Co., Ltd. and third party Inter-Biopharm Holding Limited. Wang Shumei, president of the Fourth Civil Division of SPC and judge of the CICC, served as the presiding judge.
     
    Reportedly, the plaintiff originally commenced proceedings in the People's Court of Huairou District, Beijing on December 23, 2016. After the case was filed on January 4, 2017, two hearings were held on November 21, 2018 and February 25, 2019.
     
    “Given the fact that the Second International Commercial Court of the Supreme People's Court has already accepted a series of cases regarding Red Bull, and trial of this case will help other cases to be dealt with in a timely manner. Following CICC's principles of fairness, efficiency, convenience and cost-effectiveness in dispute resolution, the SPC decided that this case should be heard by the CICC on May 5, 2019 with its first instance judgment being final',” Wang Shumei said.
     
    On May 27, 2019, the Collegiate Bench reconvened a pre-trial conference to arrange for evidence exchange among the three parties and to determine relevant procedural matters.
     
    On May 29, 2019, the Second International Commercial Court heard its very first case in an open hearing for a shareholder qualification conformation case among the plaintiff Ruoychai International Group Co., Ltd. and the defendant Red Bull Vitamin Drink Co., Ltd. and the third party Inter-Biopharm Holding Limited. The case was heard by a Collegiate Bench composed of CICC judges Wang Shumei, Sun Xiangzhuang, Zhang Xuemei, Ding Guangyu and Guo Zaiyu.
     
    These two open hearings received wide attention from the international community. NPC deputies, CPPCC members, foreign diplomatic envoys in China, special supervisors of the SPC, expert members of the International Commercial Expert Committee, representatives from international commercial arbitration and mediation institutions, as well as representatives of teachers and students from universities sat in as audience.
     
    Shan Wenhua, Expert Member of the International Commercial Expert Committee of SPC, and Dean of the School of Law of Xi'an Jiaotong University, was invited to observe the trial. He said, “this trial will provide a blueprint for the resolution of international commercial disputes of the CICC. This is a very fruitful and rewarding attempt in respect of establishing a fair, efficient and cost-effective mechanism for resolving international commercial disputes (including those involving the Belt and Road Initiative), providing fair protection for the parties (whether Chinese or foreign), and creating a stable, fair, transparent and predictable business environment with the rule of law. ”
     
    Reportedly, apart from these two open hearing cases, the CICC has already accepted a number of cases involving parties from Japan, Italy, Thailand and other countries. For some cases, pre-trial conferences, inquiries and other procedures have already taken place.
     
    “We will resolve these cases in a fair and efficient manner in accordance with the law. With fairness and efficiency in respect of both process and results, we will present the image of Chinese courts on the international stage, enhance judicial credibility, and effectively provide services and safeguards for the construction of the Belt and Road Initiative”, remarked Luo Dongchuan.
     
    Breaking the waves
     
    Opening up a new world of judicial exchange
     
    In order to further promote mutual exchange and appraisal, and to deliver Chinese voices, the CICC actively carried out international exchanges.
     
    The 2018 China Arbitration Summit (“the Summit”), jointly organized by SPC, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) and the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), was inaugurated on September 17, 2018. Luo Dongchuan, Vice President of SPC, attended the Summit and delivered a keynote speech, wherein Luo introduced some new developments of the SPC in promoting judicial review of arbitration in China. Many honored guests attending the Summit made comments on the CICC.
     
    Since September 2001, Luo Dongchuan has met respectively with Anna Joubin-Bret, Secretary of UNCITRAL, Liu Xiaohong, Vice Chairman of ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR, and Emmanuel Gaillard, President of Association for International Arbitration. Luo introduced to them China's plan of establishing the CICC, forming the International Commercial Expert Committee, and striving to build a fair and just, open and inclusive, and transparent and convenient mechanism for resolving international commercial disputes.
     
    Emanuel Gaillard spoke highly of the efforts of the Chinese courts in international commercial dispute resolution, and expressed his honor to be appointed as one of the first committee members of the International Commercial Expert Committee of the SPC.
     
    On May 22, 2019, the Sino-French Symposium on International Commercial Trial was held in Beijing. Representatives of the two countries introduced their respective commercial courts and had discussions on case management, recognition and enforcement of judgments in foreign countries, and challenges faced by judges of international commercial courts. Everything is ready! As a new part of the beautiful rule-of-law landscape in the world, we look forward to the new achievements of the CICC.

    【作者简介】
    Liu Tingmei

    本网站文章仅代表作者个人观点,不代表本网站的观点与看法。
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