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GAR 100 - 5th Edition

Sally Harpole & Co

05 March 2012

A Hong Kong-based sole practitioner capable of working in English, Mandarin or Spanish.

Who’s Who name:
Sally A Harpole

This solo practice was set up by US national Sally Harpole in 2001 to enable her to pursue arbitrator work. Fluent in Mandarin and Spanish, she has an association with China stretching back more than 30 years and is unquestionably a pioneer in the field in the region. She was in the first tranche of non-Chinese lawyers appointed to the CIETAC panel of arbitrators in 1979 (with Michael Moser), coinciding with the country’s “open-door policy” to foreign trade and investment. Around that time, she established US firm Graham & James’ Beijing office and managed it throughout the 1980s. A 10-year secondment at Deacons ended around 2000 when the Hong Kong part of that firm split into two parts.

According to a Chinese lawyer in Beijing, Harpole is “highly regarded in Chinese arbitration circles” and receives regular appointments at CIETAC, “partly because of [her] Chinese language abilities.” In 2008, she was appointed to CIETAC’s supreme governing body for a three-year term. Outside China, she sits regularly as an arbitrator in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Stockholm.

Among the most famous cases she has arbitrated was an SCC arbitration between French food product company Groupe Danone and its Chinese joint venture partner – one of the largest Sino-Western disputes to date, fought across eight jurisdictions.

As counsel, she has represented multinational and Chinese entities, and clients in aviation, nuclear power, the hotel industry, television, film and live entertainment.

She is a former co-chair of the IBA’s arbitration committee and was a member of the AAA’s taskforce on the exchange of documentary and electronic materials. In addition, she’s a visiting professor and senior fellow at the Strauss Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University School of Law.

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