Country's first financial court opens in Shanghai

Li Qian
Shanghai Financial Court handling complicated civil cases involving the huge sums of money, received its first case yesterday
Li Qian

Shanghai Financial Court, China’s first to specialize in finance cases, opened Monday as the city strives to become a global financial center.

The court, at 209 Fuzhou Road, received its first case at 8:30am yesterday, one day after it officially opened. On same day, its bilingual website was launched.

The court, at the same level as an intermediate people’s court, will handle  complicated civil cases involving the huge sums of money, said the newly-appointed president Zhao Hong, former president of Shanghai Maritime Court.

The court deals with disputes involving banking, bills, crowd-funding, futures, insurance, lending, online payments, securities, trusts, etc. It will also deal with bankruptcy cases and administrative cases filed against financial regulators, Zhao told press conference yesterday.

If the dispute is based in Shanghai, it must involve at least 100 million yuan. The amount is lowered to 50 million yuan if any side is not based in Shanghai, Zhao said. 

The court does not accept any criminal cases nor cases between individuals. Only cases between individuals and financial platforms, institutions and other groups are accepted.

The new court has six sections and 28 presiding judges, described by Zhao as an “elite squad.” 

“They have worked on the front-line for many years, dealing with many prominent financial cases such as the Everbright Securities' fat-finger error that had rocked the Shanghai stock market,” she added.

The idea to establish a court specializing in financial disputes was first proposed during the city’s “Two Sessions” in 2010. China's top legislature approved its establishment in April.

The court aims to set an example for other courts and to become one of the rule-makers in the international financial market. 

Last year, courts in Shanghai heard more than 179,000 financial cases. The number of such cases in Shanghai grew by an average 51 percent from 2013 to 2017.

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