Hong Kong is now taking steps to move forward to become a Mediation and Arbitration Centre for the Asia Pacific region. Mediation is an Alternative Dispute Resolution method which takes place outside all the formal settings as well as court procedures. Professional mediators, who are well trained with negotiation and problem solving skills, are responsible for co-ordinating and conducting meetings for disputed parties in an impartial manner, with an aim to facilitate the disputed parties to understand, discuss, and make efforts to resolve their disputes in a fair way. The mediation process is entirely voluntary and confidential.
Instead of being “the judge of the dispute”, mediators would not give any personal judgment or professional opinions to determine the “rights and wrongs” of the involved parties. To the contrary, the role of the mediators would assist the disputed parties to reach a mutually accepted agreement based on the parties’ self determination. If settlement agreement has been reached, it would be reduced into a written contract which is legal binding and enforceable under the law of contract.