Episode 4 (2 MARCH 2023) featured a discussion of the PRC Supreme Court’s recent guidance on issues relating to determining the validity of arbitration agreements, as part of our ‘A Case in Time’ Headnote series.

Helen Tang and Celine Wang of Herbert Smith Freehills, the authors of the GAP chapter on China, summarised the issues relating to determining the validity of arbitration agreements. They shared the key takeaways based on the PRC Supreme Court’s recent effort to provide a uniform approach for courts across the country to follow in dealing with these issues and discussed two guiding cases published by the PRC Supreme Court in December 2022, followed by comments from Isuru Devendra of Latham & Watkins (short bios of the speakers below) and a Q&A with the participants.



The Delos Guide to Arbitration Places (GAP) is designed to assist in-house counsel, corporate lawyers and arbitration practitioners with efficiently accessing key insights into a large range of jurisdictions, including for the purposes of negotiating the choice of arbitral seats and conducting arbitral proceedings in those jurisdictions.

This peer-reviewed open access publication is now in its second edition. Browse the table of contents, explore the jurisdictions covered in the GAP or jump to the traffic lights table.

Isuru Davendra is an Associate in the London office of Latham & Watkins and a member of the firm’s International Arbitration and Public International Law practices.  He represents clients in investor-State and international commercial arbitrations and advises on public international law matters. Isuru is the Deputy Secretary of the Asia-Pacific Forum for International Arbitration and recognised as a Future Leader in Arbitration by Who’s Who Legal.

Helen Tang is a partner at Herbert Smith Freehills. Helen specialises in China-related dispute resolution with a focus on commercial arbitration. Helen advises Chinese state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and private enterprises, as well as multinational corporations operating in China, on contentious matters. Her practice focuses on commercial arbitration, compliance and investigation, as well as other forms of dispute resolution including pre-action strategy and settlement negotiation.

Celine Wang is a senior associate at Herbert Smith Freehills’ Shanghai office. She advises corporate clients in relation to general commercial disputes, investigation and compliance matters. She represents companies and state-owned entities in international arbitration under UNCITRAL, ICC, SIAC, CIETAC rules in the oil and gas, construction and infrastructure, manufacturing, hospitality, pharmaceutical and shipping sectors. Celine was trained in the London office of Herbert Smith Freehills and is admitted as a solicitor in England and Wales. She has worked with Herbert Smith Freehills in its London, Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai offices since 2010.

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