Guide to Regional Arbitration (volume 10 - 2022)

Beijing Arbitration Commission (BAC)

Beijing Arbitration Commission (BAC)

Professional notice


History and development

The Beijing Arbitration Commission, also known as the Beijing International Arbitration Center (the BAC/BIAC), was established on 28 September 1995. The BAC/BIAC became the first self-funded arbitration institution in mainland China in 1998. Over the past two decades, the BAC/BIAC has become a leading arbitration institution in China, with an international reputation for its independence, impartiality, professionalism and efficiency.

As an emerging international arbitration institution, the BAC/BIAC has built partnerships with major arbitration institutions along the Belt and Road countries to provide a world-class ADR service for its users. While the BAC/BIAC provides credible ADR service to users around the world, it also actively promotes exchange and cooperation within the international arbitration community. It is a member of the China-Africa Joint Arbitration Center and a co-founder of the Belt and Road Arbitration Initiative. It also regularly organises overseas summits on commercial dispute resolution in China, sponsors the biennial ICCA Conference and contributes constructively to the UNCITRAL Working Group II as an observer.

Structure and service

  • The BAC/BIAC’s operations are overseen by a committee, comprised of 11 members and led by the chair.
  • The daily affairs of the BAC/BIAC are run by its secretariat, headed by the secretary general, with more than 60 case managers who are capable of providing multilingual service.
  • The BAC/BIAC has nearly 700 arbitrators, including more than 130 foreign arbitrators, on its panel. Parties may nominate arbitrators outside the BAC/BIAC’s panel in international cases.
  • The BAC/BIAC also provides meditation and construction dispute board review for dispute resolution.
  • The BAC/BIAC released its Investment Arbitration Rules in 2019 to provide investment arbitration service.

Up-in-front practice

  • The BAC/BIAC has become the first arbitration institution in mainland China that separates arbitrator remuneration and institutional fees since 2019.
  • The BAC/BIAC’s current arbitration rules incorporate advanced practices of international arbitration, such as virtual hearings, interim measures, emergency arbitrators, joinder of additional parties and consolidation of arbitration cases.
  • Parties are free to adopt the IBA’s Rules on the Taking of Evidence in International Arbitration and its Guidelines on Conflict of Interests in International Arbitration, as well as other professional guidelines, into their case.
  • In 2017, the BAC/BIAC appointed its first emergency arbitrator in mainland China. The interim measure decision made by the emergency arbitrator was enforced in Hong Kong, which was unprecedented in mainland China.

Advantages and fees

  • The BAC/BIAC is financially independent and not subject to government interference.
  • Foreign lawyers are allowed to represent parties in arbitration cases.
  • The BAC/BIAC arbitral awards are final and binding, and enforceable under the 1958 New York Convention.
  • The BAC/BIAC’s arbitration fees are comparatively lower than other international arbitration institutions.
  • Fixed arbitration fees are provided under the BAC/BIAC fee schedule, but the parties may choose to pay the arbitrator’s fee on the basis of an hourly rate.

BAC/BIAC facilities

  • 23 hearing rooms equipped with technical assistance and simultaneous translation.
  • Three conference rooms for up to 200 people.
  • Teleconferencing and videoconferencing facilities.
  • Online case management system and app.
  • Self-service filing and enquiries service.
  • 70 free parking spaces.

BAC/BIAC figures

  • A steady increase of the caseload, from seven in 1995 to over 50,000 by 2021.
  • Parties involved in BAC/BIAC administered cases are from 54 jurisdictions to date.
  • Since 2005, there have been 669 appointments to foreign arbitrators.
  • Since 2014, the average amount in dispute is over US$2 million; in particular, the largest amount in dispute in a single case is over US$1.7 billion.

Annual caseload over the past 10 years

Total caseload1473162720412944301235504784673256177737
Disputed amount (US$ in billion)6.31215.941.146.644.875.213.513.415.5
International caseload26444152697788163215249

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