We are pleased to celebrate the signing of an agreement between JAMS and the Shanghai Commercial Mediation Center. Although JAMS is a global organization, this is the only agreement of its kind in China.
The primary reason for the success of ADR in the U.S. is that it allows parties to achieve resolution quickly and with less expense. The availability and use of skilled, highly trained and experienced mediators and arbitrators allows businesses to efficiently move beyond disputes so they can focus on their primary mission. Litigation can be extremely expensive and it uses resources that could be put to use in far more productive ways.
It is clear that China presents an even larger opportunity for mediation. It has a vibrant economy, an increasing number of commercial transactions and growing free trade zones. It is a perfect environment in which to establish and encourage mediation as part of business practices. The growing pace of cross-border commerce also presents a growing demand for mediation and arbitration.
JAMS has seen a rapid expansion in the number of cross-border disputes that it handles – a 30 percent increase last year alone. But we have limited expertise in cultures and legal systems outside of our core markets, and that is why it is important to have high-quality organizations like the SCMC to be our partner.
SCMC Director Madame Zhang and her team have expressed a desire to build the premier mediation company in China and our two organizations will work closely together to further that goal. SCMC has already put together a respected panel of experts in mediation and we will work together to ensure that the systems and procedures that SCMC puts in place are among the best in the world.
We are looking forward to a successful relationship with SCMC and hope that these efforts will ensure that ADR becomes as accepted here as it has in the United States so that businesses involved in both domestic and cross-border commerce can thrive.