Last month, I stayed in Beijing for a few days to attend the second Belt and Road Joint Conference. I also took this opportunity to visit the Beijing Internet Court.
With the basic idea of “online case heard online”, the Beijing Internet Court adopts an e-litigation platform and utilizes artificial intelligence technology to generate pleadings, real time voice-to-text and the basic information of judgments. Hearings are conducted through the electronic platform on which parties to the litigation are not required to appear in person. The court, integrated with intelligent technology, brings an easy access to justice to all parties.
To echo with the Goal 16 of “the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals” - promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels, the HKSAR Government indicated support for the development of an online dispute resolution and deal making platform. A non-governmental organisation, eBRAM (Electronic Business Related Arbitration and Mediation) is tasked to develop such a platform to provide efficient and cost-effective online dispute resolution services.
eBRAM will use internet-based online platform to facilitate the provision of one-stop dispute resolution services. To ensure a smooth operation in future, the staff of eBRAM visits different places, such as the Beijing Internet Court, to learn more about the technology for e-litigation platform. At the same time, they also share their experience with institutions from other jurisdictions. Participation in the discussion on the development of online dispute resolution at APEC is an example.
One of the characteristics under development by eBRAM is making use of artificial intelligence and advanced technology to provide a secure platform for the upload, download and exchange of case materials to assist parties in resolving disputes and entering into business deals.
Users will be able to access the platform anywhere around the world with only an internet connection. It will not only facilitate development of local micro, small and medium-sized enterprises and legal professionals under the Belt and Road as well as Greater Bay Area Initiatives, but also create synergy with existing dispute resolution service providers.
Innovative technology has greatly helped the development of dispute resolution services. I believe the establishment of a safe, reliable and credible platform to provide enterprises with cost-effective online dispute resolution services will become a new trend. The Government will continue to actively promote LawTech. We hope that eBRAM will provide a more convenient way to access to justice in a bid to strengthen our rule of law.
August 7, 2019