Professional certified Chinese-English and English-Chinese translation and interpretation services come in handy during arbitration. According to Article 15 of the Chinese Arbitration Law, all arbitration that takes place in China must be conducted according to Chinese law. At the outset, this requires conducting the arbitration in Chinese and, therefore, using a foreign language interpretation. Further, all evidence must either be in Chinese or include a foreign language translation. The law does include a special provision for resolving disputes between a Chinese party and a foreign investor or business. According to Article 65, this special provision applies only when the arbitration matter involves an economic, trade, transport or maritime dispute involving foreign concerns.
Regardless of whether the exception applies, the issue of arbitral jurisdiction always plays an important part as this determines which arbitral institution will conduct the proceedings, which procedure will apply, and which law will govern. Although there is no Chinese law that requires an arbitration to be held locally, it is rare that a Chinese business will agree to any arbitration agreement that will take place in the other party’s country for business that takes place within China. If this issue cannot be resolved, the usual alternative is to have the arbitration take place in a neutral third party country.