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    Special Decision on Reduction of Arbitration Fees

    To effectively contain the outbreak of novel coronavirus pneumonia, protect the health of the arbitrating parties, efficiently resolve commercial disputes between businesses, alleviate the financial burdens of dispute resolution, and maintain a stable, orderly, and fair business environment during the epidemic, the Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration (“SCIA”, also known as “South China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission” and “Shenzhen Arbitration Commission”) hereby issues the following special decision (“Decision”) on reducing the arbitration fees of cases heard online.

    1. Scope of Application
    The Decision is applicable to cases that meet the following conditions:
    (1) cases that have been accepted but not heard before the issuance of the Decision, and both parties agree to conduct subsequent proceedings (including but not limited to submitting documents, holding hearings, and examining evidence online) on SCIA’s Online Arbitration Service Platform (“Online Platform”);
    (2) cases that have not yet been accepted before the issuance of the Decision but the claimant subsequently requests for online arbitration and both parties agree to conduct all proceedings (including but not limited to submitting documents, holding hearings, and examining evidence online) on the Online Platform. The Decision does not apply to cases where only one party consents to online arbitration.
    2. Period of Fee Reduction
    The tentative period for fee reduction starts from the issuance of the Decision and ends when the epidemic ends (the specific date will be announced at a later time according decision of the government). This particular requirement is met by all cases accepted before this period and where both parties agree during this period to conduct subsequent proceedings on the Online Platform, and by all cases where the claimant requests for online arbitration during this period and both parties agree to conduct all proceedings on the Online Platform.
    The arbitration fees for cases administered online after the epidemic prevention period will be announced at a later time.
    3. Amount of Fee Reduction
    (1) For eligible domestic cases: case-acceptance fees will be waived; case-handling fees will be halved, i.e., collected at 50% of the rate specified in the applicable arbitration rules of the SCIA.
    (2) For eligible international and foreign-related cases (including those relating to Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan): registration fees will be waived; all other arbitration fees will be halved, i.e., collected at 50% of the rate specified in the applicable arbitration rules of the SCIA.
    (3) Where the parties to an online arbitration reach a settlement after the commencement of the online proceedings but before the formation of the arbitral tribunal, the arbitration fees will be reduced by a further 50% on top of the original 50% reduction.
    (4) Where the parties to an online arbitration reach a settlement after the formation of the arbitral tribunal but before the first hearing, the arbitration fees will be reduced by a further 30% on top of the original 50% reduction.
    (5) Where the parties to an online arbitration reach a settlement during or after the first hearing, the arbitration fees will be reduced by a further 10% on top of the original 50% reduction.
    (6) Fees that fall outside the scope of the Decision will continue to be governed by the relevant rules of the SCIA.
    4. Procedures of Fee Reduction
    (1) For any case that has been accepted before the issuance of the Decision and both parties agree to conduct subsequent proceedings on the Online Platform, each of the parties needs to submit the Consent to Online Arbitration and Application for Arbitration Fees Reduction through the Online Platform. Upon verification, for an eligible domestic case, 100% of the case-acceptance fee and 50% of the case-handling fee that have already been paid will be refunded upon the closure of the case; for an eligible international or foreign-related case (including any relating to Hong Kong, Macao, or Taiwan), 100% of the registration fee and 50% of all other arbitration fees that have already been paid will be refunded upon the closure of the case.
    (2) For any case that has not yet been accepted before the issuance of the Decision but the claimant subsequently requests for online arbitration and both parties agree to conduct all proceedings on the Online Platform, each of the parties needs to submit the Consent to Online Arbitration and Application for Arbitration Fees Reduction through the Online Platform. Upon verification, for an eligible domestic case, 100% of the case-acceptance fee and 50% of the case-handling fee will be waived; for an eligible international or foreign-related case (including any relating to Hong Kong, Macao, or Taiwan), 100% of the registration fee and 50% of all other arbitration fees will be waived.
    (3) Applicable refund will be issued for cases that are resolved at various stages of online arbitration proceedings upon closure of the cases.

    The SCIA encourages all parties to use its online arbitration service during this extraordinary period and looks forward to valuable feedbacks from all.
    Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration

    6 February 2020

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