The Rules are also intended to provide an alternative for Chinese investors who may be concerned about potential bias against them in offshore forums due to a lack of understanding of Chinese law and practice. The Rules retain traditional arbitration characteristics such as flexibility, efficiency, and economy but incorporate elements of both Chinese and international arbitration law and practice. How the Rules will be adopted in practice, however, remains to be seen. The Rules could be included in investment contracts between Chinese investors and host country governments.
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The arbitral tribunal shall hold oral hearings when examining the case. However, the arbitral tribunal may examine the case on the basis of documents only if the parties so agree. The arbitral tribunal may adopt an inquisitorial or adversarial approach in hearing the case having regard to the circumstances of the case, and if it considers it necessary, it can issue procedural orders or question lists, produce terms of reference, or hold pre-hearing conferences, etc.
Summary Procedure Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, Summary Procedure shall apply to any case where the amount in dispute does not exceed RMB 5,,; or to any case where the amount in dispute exceeds RMB 5,,, yet one party applies for arbitration under the Summary Procedure and the other party agrees in writing.
The Respondent shall submit its Statement of Defense, evidence and other supporting documents within 20 days of receipt of the Notice of Arbitration; counterclaim, if any, shall also be filed with evidence and supporting documents within the same time period.
The arbitral tribunal shall render an arbitral award within 3 months from the date on which the arbitral tribunal is formed. If the parties wish to conciliate their dispute but do not wish to have conciliation conducted by the arbitral tribunal, CIETAC may, with the consent of both parties, assist the parties to conciliate the dispute in a manner and procedure it considers appropriate.
The parties may also settle the case by themselves. If a settlement agreement is reached through conciliation by the arbitral tribunal or by the parties themselves, the parties may withdraw their claim or counterclaim. The parties may also request the arbitral tribunal to render an arbitral award or a conciliation statement in accordance with the terms of the settlement agreement.
Where conciliation fails, any opinion, view or statement, and any proposal or proposition expressing acceptance or opposition by either party or by the arbitral tribunal in the process of conciliation, shall not be invoked by either party as grounds for any claim, defense or counterclaim in the subsequent arbitration proceedings, judicial proceedings, or any other proceedings.
Parties can choose the arbitrators listed in the Panel of Arbitrators, they can also choose arbitrators outside the Panel. Those arbitrators are professionals of both common law and civil laws, and procedural patterns inquisitorial or adversarial approach. While those arbitrators cover the fields of major jurisdictions in the world, a lot of them are also Chinese law experts or experts from other professional fields.
CIETAC Arbitration Rules
It is also the earliest and the biggest arbitration institution in China. In order to satisfy the demands of business, the CIETAC also established 26 liasion offices in different regions and specific business sectors to provide parties with convenient arbitration advice. It acts as a specialized organization for communicating with related sectors and promoting arbitration and a specific arbitration center to resolve disputes of specific business sectors based on authorization. With its emphasis on commercial arbitration, CIETAC has fostered a diversified, dynamic and interdependent service system for multiple dispute resolution. Throughout the past 50 years, the CIETAC has made prominent contributions to the legislation of the Chinese Arbitration Law and the development of the arbitration practice in China, has maintained positive relations and cooperation with all the major arbitration institutions across the world and gained the reputation at home and abroad as an independent, impartial and efficient arbitration institution.
CIETAC Investment Arbitration Rules
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