On January 7, 2013, Hong Kong’s Secretary for Justice, Rimsky Yuen, and Macao’s Secretary for Administration and Justice, Florinda Chan, signed a bilateral arrangement to provide for the mutual recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards in both places.
Under the Arrangement, Hong Kong’s courts will recognize and enforce arbitral awards made in Macao pursuant to Macao’s laws of arbitration, and Macao’s courts will recognize and enforce arbitral awards made in Hong Kong pursuant to its Arbitration Ordinance.
Where a party fails to comply with an arbitral award, whether made in Hong Kong or in Macao, the other party may apply to the relevant court, in the place where the party against whom the application is filed is domiciled or the place in which the property of the said party is situated, for recognition and enforcement of the award.
The arrangement was made in accordance with the provisions in the Basic Law of both places. The content of the arrangement is also made in accordance with the spirit of the New York Convention, and is broadly similar to the existing arrangements on the same issue between Hong Kong and China and between Macao and China.
It is expected that the conclusion of the arrangement will add certainty to the enforceability of Macao arbitral awards in Hong Kong and vice versa, and provide a simple and effective mechanism in both jurisdictions on reciprocal enforcement of arbitral awards. It should also foster legal and judicial co-operation between Hong Kong and Macao in civil and commercial matters, and enhance Hong Kong's position as a regional arbitration centre for commercial disputes in Asia Pacific.
During his stay in Macao, Yuen also took the opportunity to visit other legal and judicial organizations in Macao, including the Secretariat for Administration and Justice and Legal Affairs Bureau, with the purpose of enhancing the mutual exchanges and relations of the two sides in legal and judicial matters..
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