Proposed Revisions to PRC Arbitration Law

15 September 2021

On 30 July 2021, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) of the PRC released proposed revisions to the PRC Arbitration Law for public consultation (“Revision Draft”).  The MOJ also published explanatory notes to the Revision Draft. 



China’s Arbitration Law was enacted in 1994 and since its enactment there have been no significant  amendments.  In 2018, the MOJ commenced a review process of the current law, which led to the publication of the Revision Draft.



The proposed changes to China’s Arbitration Law have been necessitated by China’s economic growth over the last 20 years. The changes to the current law aim to align China’s Arbitration regime more closely with international Arbitration practice and procedures.



The Revision Draft foreshadows a number of new initiatives which include the following.

  • The scope of arbitration will be expanded to enable, among other things, Arbitration in connection with disputes relating to funding and sport.
  • Foreign arbitration institutions will be permitted to establish business operations in China to conduct foreign-related arbitration business.
  • Ad hoc arbitration will be permitted for “foreign-related commercial disputes”.
  • The nationality of arbitral awards will be determined by the seat of the arbitration.
  • Arbitrators will be allowed to determine their own jurisdiction over a claim.
  • Arbitral tribunals will be empowered to grant interim measures.
  • Arbitration proceedings will now be permitted to be conducted online.