To better cope with the challenges and to harness the additional opportunities offered by the Belt and Road Initiative and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Plan, the Inclusive Dispute Avoidance and Resolution Office (IDAR Office) was established within the Department, which works directly under the steer of the Secretary for Justice, on 2 January 2019.

The IDAR Office’s objective is to facilitate access to justice and provide equal opportunities for people from all walks of life and for all sectors of the economy without boundary, advancing Goal 16 of the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals in this region and beyond. Goal 16 emphasises the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, the provision of access to justice for all and the building of effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.

The IDAR Office’s work includes pursuing and concluding cooperation or partnership arrangements in relation to international arbitration and mediation matters with other jurisdictions and international organisations. It also organises, supports or encourages a number of important international events and activities in Hong Kong, as well as raises the international profile of Hong Kong in deal making and dispute resolution through capacity building and promotional activities overseas. For more details about the past and upcoming key legal and dispute resolution events in Hong Kong, please visit the Legal Hub’s website.

Supported by the Mediation Team of the Civil Division, the Arbitration Unit of the Legal Policy Division and the International Organisation and Legal Cooperation Team of the International Law Division, the IDAR Office strengthens the coordination of mediation and arbitration works in the Department, liaises with the relevant international, regional and local bodies, and serves the relevant steering committees relating to dispute avoidance and resolution services.