Court provides first-class services: judge
Yu Changyong, who has served as a judge with Qianhai Cooperation Zone People’s Court since its establishment five years ago, said he has witnessed every change and reform the court has made and believes the court will provide first-class legal services to clients and become a pioneer in cross-border legal cooperation and judicial reform.
“The court acts like a pioneer in the Chinese judicial system,” said Yu. “It was required by the Supreme People’s Court to set a model for China’s judicial system reform.” It was specially established for the trial of commercial cases (as well as civil cases) within its jurisdiction (the Qianhai Cooperation Zone) and citywide cases involving Hong Kong, Macao,Taiwan and foreign matters.
“By adopting a court’s structure that is similar to its Hong Kong counterparts, this court doesn’t have the traditional divisions like other mainland courts, which is aiming to streamline the operation system and to achieve higher efficiency.”
As one of the few courts on the mainland that hires Hong Kong professionals as people’s assessors, the court respects and guarantees litigants’ right to choose the laws that apply to their cases in accordance with Chinese law.
According to Yu, the court has a “sound and sophisticated” system for handling cases.
“To provide quality services and guarantee the litigants’ rights, we appointed Hong Kong professionals as people’s assessors and receive help from the China Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan and Foreign Law Discerning and Application Center. It has greatly helped diminish and even eliminate mistrust and misunderstandings arising from the differences between different legal systems and environments,” he said.
Yu said his Hong Kong co-workers have the same right of authority in deciding a case. They also give advice on cases that involve Hong Kong, Macao,Taiwan or foreign matters.
“Working with them is a delightful thing for me. We are making an effort to provide first-class legal services to society and to offer judicial guarantees to the sound and smooth development of Qianhai,” he said.
“As the world is changing so fast, the court system needs to be open and vibrant. It has to carry out reforms to be inclusive and be able to adapt to the development of society. All legal systems share common notions and principles: justice, efficiency, equal protection, etc. Under these norms, they all need to change, to reform so as to improve within their own legal sphere,” he added.
From February 2015 to June 2019, the court handled 6,580 commercial disputes involving Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and foreign matters, among which 4,738 were Hong Kong-related, ranking No. 1 in terms of the number of such cases resolved in courts across the Chinese mainland. The people’s assessors from Hong Kong have participated in 386 trials so far.
The court has also actively explored the reform of trial procedures and mechanisms regarding foreign-related cases. The reform involved 27 items in six categories and has greatly enhanced efficiency in handling such cases by 50 percent compared to the pre-reform period.