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Govt proposes changes to arbitration rules

Fri, 18th May 2018


Executive Council spokesman Leong Heng Teng said Thursday that the government has drafted a bill regulating the city’s arbitration procedures, which aims to encourage residents to choose arbitration as an alternative means of dispute resolution.


Addressing a press conference at Government Headquarters, Leong said that the council, the government’s top advisory body, has completed its discussion of the bill, which is to replace the city’s current rules on the arbitration process.


The bill is now slated to be submitted to the Legislative Assembly (AL) for debate and vote.


Leong said that alternative ways of dispute resolution, including arbitration, have become increasingly popular among public entities and private entities around the world, as they can help improve the efficiency of solving disputes and alleviate the workload of the courts.


According to Leong, the city’s arbitration procedures are currently regulated by a decree-law promulgated in 1996 and another in 1998. The latter one was promulgated to tackle arbitration for commercial matters involving individuals or entities from outside Macau.


In order to promote the use of arbitration by residents for solving disputes and help Macau develop into a commercial arbitration hub between China and Portuguese-speaking countries (PSCs), Leong said that the government was proposing the arbitration bill on par with international standards.


The government proposes that the new arbitration law is to replace the two existing decree-laws, Leong noted.


According to Leong, the bill includes articles based on the requirements listed by the latest Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration drafted by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law. The model law, adopted in 1985, was amended in 2006.


The 1998 decree-law was drafted based on the requirements listed by the 1985 version of the Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration.