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Legal Update: Hong Kong-Guangdong Framework Agreement on Legal Exchange and Mutual Learning

 

By Jade Tang

On September 7 2019, the Department of Justice entered into a framework agreement with the High People's Court of Guangdong Province to facilitate the exchange and mutual learning by legal professionals in Hong Kong and Guangdong (the “Agreement”).

 

The Agreement

Hong Kong has been playing a vital role in the development of the Greater Bay Area. This Agreement takes it one step further by providing a platform for the Hong Kong legal sector to engage in meaningful exchange with its Guangdong counterpart, and to leverage opportunities in the Greater Bay Area.

Under the Agreement,  

  • Courts in Guangdong and legal bodies in Hong Kong will launch projects on legal aspects for mutual exchanges and collaboration for the enhancement of the legal development and safeguard in the Greater Bay Area; and
  • Mutual learning opportunities such as seminars will be held for judicial members and legal practitioners in both jurisdictions to forge a better understanding of each other’s legal system.

 

Implications

  • A communication mechanism between Guangdong and Hong Kong for the exchange of legal information encourages mutual undertaking on our respective legal system, which will be essential for the implementation of any future cross-boundary co-operation projects that must be underpinned by legislation and firmly rooted in the overarching principle of “One Country, Two Systems” enshrined in the Basic Law.
  • Given the growing economic and trading activities between Hong Kong and mainland China, mutual understanding of each other’s legal principles will help advocates in the Greater Bay Area better grasp the legal issues, expediting the process of dispute resolution.

 

Conclusion

The Agreement, when viewed in conjunction with the Legislative Council paper “Opportunities for Hong Kong’s Legal and Dispute Resolution Services in the Greater Bay Area” issued in March 2019, can be acknowledged as an attempt to speed up the legal cooperation in the Greater Bay Area that is commensurate with the development of an open economy.   

 

If you have any questions on the above or on any corporate and commercial law issues, please contact one of the members of the Corporate and Commercial Law team.

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