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21 April
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Asia

The electronic system eBRAM to help to slash arbitration costs

The city government backed it to the tune of HK$150 million

Photo: Pixabay

/NOVOSTIVL/ The system, Electronic Business Related Arbitration and Mediation – or eBRAM – is expected to slash arbitration costs by cutting down on face-to-face meetings and long-distance travel. This article appeared in the South China Morning Post.

First advocated by justice minister Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah in 2017 when she was still in private practice, it was co-founded and supported by the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society, among others.

The city government has backed it to the tune of HK$150 million (US$19.1 million) for its first six years. Pending the legislature’s approval, it could launch in the fourth quarter of 2019 or in early 2020.

The mediator or arbitrator could hear the case over video conferencing and read documents filed online before issuing a verdict on the platform, Chan added.

While the parties would be encouraged to adopt Hong Kong law, Chan said, they could also choose the laws of other jurisdictions to settle the case.

“Lawyers charge an hourly rate and that is coupled with the expense of flights and accommodation, together with administrative costs charged by an arbitration centre. It can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars,” said Zhao, who worked as an arbitrator himself.

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