Firms move legal battles from protest-hit Hong Kong in fresh setback for business

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Months of demonstrations against mainland China's growing influence have pushed the city's economy into its first recession in a decade.

File: A demonstrator is detained by police officers during a protest in Hong Kong, China August 31, 2019.SINGAPORE - Safety fears in Hong Kong have prompted firms to shift arbitration hearings out of the Chinese-ruled city, industry sources said, another sign that pro-democracy protests are denting its appeal as an international business hub.

Countries compete to become international arbitration venues not just because it is a multi-billion dollar global industry, but because it bolsters their reputation for being a good place to do business. Singapore and Hong Kong are the two leading arbitration hubs in Asia, and in the top five globally, according to Queen Mary University of London.

Sarah Grimmer, Secretary General of the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre, declined to comment. But she said the centre's case numbers were at a record high, up 20% from this time last year.

Source: News Formal (


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