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CEAC’s 10th anniversary celebration

China’s Belt and Road Initiative

In 2018 (the Chinese Year of the Dog), the Chinese European Arbitration Centre (CEAC) celebrated its 10th anniversary with an international arbitration conference at its seat in Hamburg, Germany. For two days, 130 participants from 24 nations and five continents united to discuss the conference topic ‘China’s Belt and Road Initiative – Opportunities and Challenges for International Dispute Resolution and Contracting’. The conference was supported by 26 associations and arbitration organisations, and the faculty was equally diverse and reputable.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) was a topic of general interest, which was discussed from both an arbitration law and a substantive law perspective. It was discussed in panels, among other things, ‘What do arbitration institutions offer to BRI-arbitrations?’; ‘Common Law and Civil Law Perspective of the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts’ (ie, soft law explicitly referred to in article 35 of the CEAC Hamburg Arbitration Rules (the CEAC Rules)); ‘What can arbitrators do to bridge between common and civil law in arbitration proceedings?’; and ‘Interaction between the CISG and the UNIDROIT Principles – a hot topic for China-related contracts’.

This kind of gathering is a sign of the vivid international arbitration community, which jointly, with all its diversity, provides a ‘backbone for business’ (being a leitmotif of the CEAC’s commitment to arbitration). In the end, there exist over 1,000 arbitration institutions around the globe for business people and companies to choose from. There is no ‘one size fits all’ arbitration solution. The arbitration world has become diverse with arbitration institutions of various kinds and specialisations. And it remains without saying that there are situations where an arbitration clause choosing the arbitration rules of the CEAC may be the best choice.

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