Hong Kong Court of First Instance rejects application to set award aside on grounds of public policy and res judicata

The Hong Kong Court of First Instance has refused an application to set aside an award made in an ICC arbitration seated in Hong Kong, on public policy grounds, rejecting an argument that it should be set aside because the subject matter was res judicata.

The dispute in Shanghai Fusheng Soya-Food Co Ltd v Pulmuone Holdings Co. Ltd arose under a joint venture agreement, which was governed by the law of the PRC with arbitration to be seated in Hong Kong. The applicant initially commenced proceedings in the Shanghai No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court alleging that the respondent had misappropriated funds from the JV company.

The respondent then commenced the arbitration proceedings alleging that the applicant had repudiated the JV agreement. The tribunal concluded receipt of evidence in June 2011.

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