CEDR launches first Asia local mediator panel in Hong Kong

The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) has launched its first local mediator panel in Hong Kong, driven by growing demand in Hong Kong for commercial mediation services.

CEDR’s Asia-Pacific division opened an operational base in Hong Kong in April 2011 and is launching a panel of 22 mediators for disputes arising out of the region. The new panel will operate as the CEDR Hong Kong practice group of mediators.

The majority of the mediators are partners of law firms in Hong Kong, including Eversheds litigation partner Ivan Ng and Orrick’s Asia dispute resolution head Robert Pe, and Hong Kong barristers, such as Gary Soo and Nigal Kat. The panel also includes law professors, medical doctors, engineers, former judges and general counsel.

According to Danny McFadden, managing director for CEDR Asia Pacific, who is also a listed mediator on the new panel, the launch of the Hong Kong panel has been driven by increasing demand for mediation services following the commence of Hong Kong’s Civil Justice Reforms in April 2009.

“The Hong Kong government has put in significant efforts in promoting mediation and encouraging parties to consider the possibility of mediation before pursuing litigation to trial. Since then, the number of cases and enquiries we’ve handled has increased noticeably,” said McFadden.

CEDR Asia Pacific has also facilitated mediations in other parts of the region, including China, Singapore and Vietnam. The centre will consider launching a local panel in Singapore as the city state becomes an increasingly important international dispute resolution hub.