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Memorandum Signed

Memorandum Signed to Develop Mediation Rules for Disputes Over China BRI Projects

The Singapore International Mediation Centre and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade will jointly develop rules and procedures for disputes related to China's Belt and Road Initiative projects.

On January 24 2019, the Singapore International Mediation Centre ("SIMC") signed a Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade ("CCPIT"). Under the MOU, the SIMC and CCPIT will jointly develop the rules, case management protocol, and enforcement procedures for disputes submitted to mediation and establish a panel of mediators to resolve disputes arising out of The Central People's Government of China's Belt and Road Initiative ("BRI") projects.

BRI is designed to promote investment and trade in and along BRI jurisdictions. BRI projects, which tend to be high-value and multijurisdictional, create a demand for effective dispute resolution processes that address the expectations of all parties involved.

The MOU between the SIMC and CCPIT provides for the joint development of rules, case management protocol, and enforcement procedures for BRI disputes submitted to mediation. In this regard, the MOU can be seen as building on an earlier MOU signed by the same parties on September 19, 2017, which aims to promote mediation as a dispute resolution mechanism among businesses in Singapore and China. 

The panel of mediators to be established under the MOU will comprise experienced mediation professionals from China, Singapore ,and other BRI jurisdictions. According to the SIMC, these professionals are selected in accordance with global best practices in mediation, and will also participate in a skills exchange program to familiarize themselves with the business and dispute resolution culture of the BRI jurisdictions.

The MOU, which aims to make available a robust process for mediation conducted by mediators who are attuned to the dispute resolution culture of the BRI jurisdictions, will incentivize the use of mediation as a dispute resolution mechanism for disputes arising out of BRI projects.

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