Hill Dickinson Takes Part In Hong Kong Maritime Week 2018.

Legal News & Analysis - Asia Pacific - Hong Kong - Shipping Maritime & Aviation

7 December, 2018


The third Hong Kong Maritime Week was held from 18 to 24 November 2018. Organised by the Hong Kong Maritime and Port Board (‘HKMPB’), together with its partners including the Hong Kong Shipowners Association (‘HKSOA’) and Hong Kong Maritime Museum, international and local maritime practitioners and stakeholders gathered to share insights and experiences to ‘propel Hong Kong’ as a renowned international maritime centre.


Newly joined legal director Edward Liu, who is a co-opted member of the HKMPB and has extensive experience in maritime legal practice, participated in Hong Kong Maritime Week with other members of Hill Dickinson Hong Kong.


On 20 October, Edward participated in a legal forum themed ‘When Hong Kong lawyers meet shipping enterprises’, which discussed how, under the prospect of the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’ and the ‘Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area’, a closer cooperation between the Hong Kong legal and maritime industries would strengthen Hong Kong’s status as a high-value added maritime service centre.


This forum was held by the Hong Kong and Mainland Legal Profession Association, and was attended by the chief secretary of HKSAR Mr. Matthew Cheung, secretary of justice of HKSAR Ms. Teresa Cheng SC, deputy director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR Mr. Chen Dong and former secretary of justice of HKSAR Mr. Rimsky Yuen SC.


Edward acted as the moderator for the first discussion session in the forum with the topic ‘the opportunities and challenges faced by the Hong Kong Maritime Centre under the Belt and Road Initiatives and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area’. During this session, speeches were given by Mr. Rimsky Yuen SC, vice president of the Law Society of Hong Kong Mr. Chak Ming Chan, president of COSCO Shipping (Hong Kong) Limited Mr. Zhu Jianhui, and CEO & executive director of Great Harvest Maeta Group Holdings Limited Ms. Lam Kwan.


The guest speakers, representatives of legal professionals and enterprises in the maritime industry, all agreed that Hong Kong should utilise its advantages in terms of the well recognised legal system, judicial independence and diversified legal industry to develop Hong Kong as a maritime legal service centre.


The discussion concluded that Hong Kong should familiarise itself with the shipping industry and the relevant laws; Edward called for more opportunities for the legal and maritime sectors to exchange ideas and gain mutual understanding in order to fully explore the potentials of the city.


On 21 November, Edward, together with Hill Dickinson legal director Antony Cowie and trainee Timmy Lam, attended Mare Forum Hong Kong 2018. The Mare Forum was a platform for experts and practitioners in the maritime industry to exchange their ideas on a wide variety of topics ranging from market development and risks, environmental imperatives to the future of global shipping hubs.


Edward was a panel member of the Mare Forum and he participated in the discussion with other guest speakers. In the speech given by Mr. Frank Chan, the secretary for transport and housing of the HKSAR, he examined the challenges and opportunities faced by the maritime industry in recent years and further emphasised the support from the Hong Kong government to the local maritime industry.


In order to promote Hong Kong’s potential as the legal service hub for the maritime arbitration, Edward and Timmy were also invited to participate in the mock arbitrations held by China Maritime Arbitration Commission (CMAC), acted on behalf of the respondent in a jurisdictional challenge under the CMAC Rules against a team from Reed Smith Richards Butler. The audience included experienced lawyers and maritime practitioners from different sectors of the industry.


The factual background of the arbitration was designed to demonstrate Hong Kong's practical location of arbitration for maritime disputes, especially for those between Chinese and overseas enterprises under the Belt and Road Initiatives framework.


Hill Dickinson’s participation in the week allowed members to enhance their knowledge on the latest developments in the industry and share experiences with fellow practitioners, underlining the firm’s position in Hong Kong as a leading maritime legal services provider.