Conference presentation: The future of dispute settlement under the Belt and Road Initiative

Fri 12 March 2021

By Hanna Jez


On the 16th of February 2021, UNSW Law’s Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre member Professor Heng Wang presented at the “Belt and Road Initiative in Africa: Addressing the Issues of Debt, Dispute Resolution, and Transparency” online conference.

The conference, which was co-hosted by the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives, the University of Victoria, the Centre for Comparative and Public Law, the Faculty of Law, and the University of Hong Kong was chaired by Professor William P. Alford from Harvard University, and ran from the 24th to the 26th of February.

Panellists who joined Professor Heng Wang on day 3 of the conference included Dr. Mariel Dimsey, CMS Hasche Sigle, Hong Kong LLP, Professor Won Kidane, School of Law, Seattle University, and Professor Weixia Gu, Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong. These individuals are all leading experts in their field of academia and practice.

At the panel, Professor Heng Wang spoke on “The Future of Dispute Settlement under the Belt and Road Initiative.” His presentation focused on two key questions – ‘Is there an identifiable approach that China adopts in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)?’ and ‘How can we understand this new approach by China toward international economic governance?’

Professor Heng Wang observed the ‘functional approach’ of the BRI – looking at trade, financial aspects, and people to people movements as well as the characteristics underpinning the approach, referring to a number of case studies involving dispute settlements in China.

The panel also discussed a few more related topics including BRI disputes, the competition of BRI international dispute resolution, and more. Full discussions and the recording of the panel is available here

Professor Wang’s recent articles related to the BRI can be found here: (i) China's Approach to the Belt and Road Initiative; (ii) The Belt and Road Initiative Agreements: Characteristics, Rationale and Challenges; and (iii) Selective Reshaping: China’s Paradigm Shift in International Economic Governance.

Professor Wang’s research may be found at ResearchGateSSRN, Twitter @HengWANG_law, and LinkedIn.