Friday, September 30, 2022

Congratulations to Professor Haochen Sun !

Congratulations to Dr Haochen Sun on his promotion to full professorship! Professor Sun is an active member of our IP/IT law research team and has published widely in top journals in related fields. His most recent book entitled Technology and the Public Interest is published by Cambridge University Press. Professor Sun is a well known scholar in his field of expertise and speaks frequently at international conferences and events.  Click here to read more about his scholarship and achievements.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Hualing Fu on Pandemic Control in China’s Gated Communities (SSRN)

"Pandemic Control in China’s Gated Communities"
Fu Hualing
Published in July 2022
Introduction: A key global strategy to contain the coronavirus disease 2019 known as COVID-19 has been the implementation of social distancing measures (SDMs), in particular the Stay-at-Home (SaH) order. Given the epidemiological consensus at the time that social distancing significantly reduces transmission and that the ability of a country to contain the spread of infections depends on the degree to which SaH orders and other SDMs are enforced and complied with, few countries, if any, have not imposed lockdowns of sorts to some degree, in particular a range of SaH orders varying in scale and severity, placing a significant part of their population, if not all, under quarantine for various durations.1 To a large degree, the success or failure of these measures has depended on citizens’ willingness to change their behaviours to comply with SaH orders. ...

Richard Cullen: Hong Kong Doesn't Need Sermons from a 'Failed State' (China Daily)

"Hong Kong doesn’t need sermons from a ‘failed state’"
Richard Cullen
China Daily
Published on 13 July 2022
Introduction: Recently reported remarks by the US consul general in Hong Kong, Michael Hanscom Smith, stressed that business confidence in the special administrative region, may “continue to erode”. The National Security Law (NSL) for Hong Kong was vigorously cast, in this discussion, in a negative light.
     Indistinct, hypothesized risks were mentioned to try to put wind in the sails of yet another bout of Sinophobic grooming designed to generate alarm.
     Let us move, however, from these impressionistic risks to consider some specific rights abuses. By October 2019, all normal teaching at the University of Hong Kong was comprehensively shut down...

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

New Book by Evan Gibson: A Regulatory Design for Financial Stability in Hong Kong (CUP)

A Regulatory Design for Financial Stability in Hong Kong
Evan Gibson
Cambridge University Press
Published in August 2022
Book Description: In Hong Kong, the banking system is the primary source of financial stability risk. Post-2008 regulatory reforms have focused on financial stability policies and tools while neglecting the design of supervisory models. This book provides a comparative analysis of how supervisory models affect the management of financial stability regulations in Hong Kong's banking system. Regulatory issues discussed span prudential regulations, systemically important banks, unconventional liquidity tools, deposit insurance, lender of last resort, resolution regimes, central clearing counterparties and derivatives, Renminbi infrastructure, stock and bond connect schemes, distributed ledger technology, digital yuan, US dollar sanctions, cryptocurrencies, RegTech, and FinTech. A Regulatory Design for Financial Stability in Hong Kong elucidates the flaws and synergies in Hong Kong's banking regulatory framework and proposes conventional and innovative regulatory reforms. This book will be of great interest to banking, financial, and legal practitioners, central bankers, regulators, policy makers, finance ministries, scholars, researchers, and policy institutes.
     The author, Evan Gibson, is a Research Assistant Professor with the HKU-SCF FinTech Academy at the Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong. Dr Gibson’s research in financial law and regulation, economic law, comparative law and financial technology is recognised in world-leading publications including Financial Markets and Exchanges Law (2021), The Cambridge Handbook of Twin Peaks Financial Regulation (2021) and the Research Handbook on Asian Financial Law (2020).
     The book is now available at Amazon (Amazon.COM).  Related Event (Event URL on LinkedIn). Dr Evan Gibson will appear as guest on “Regulatory Ramblings – BRIEFS” with host Ajay Shamdasani to talk about the book on 29th September 2022 at 11:30AM to be streamed LIVE via HKU FinTech LinkedIn page. Regulatory Ramblings – BRIEFS is a 30-minute video podcast produced by HKU FinTech and hosted by HKU-SCF FinTech Academy, HKU-edX Professional Certificate in FinTech and Reg/Tech Lab.

Monday, September 26, 2022

AJLS Book Discussion: Non-Governmental Orphan Relief in China: Law, Policy and Practice, by Anna High (Zheng Xu and Shahla Ali)

"Book Discussion: Non-Governmental Orphan Relief in China: Law, Policy and Practice, by Anna High: Comments by Zheng Xu and Shahla Ali"
Zheng Xu & Shahla Ali
Asian Journal of Law and Society
Published on 13 July 2022
Abstract: Anna High's masterful and thoughtful book, Non-Governmental Orphan Relief in China: Law, Policy and Practice, examines the interplay between non-governmental and governmental orphan relief efforts in Mainland China. Both specialist and non-specialist readers will appreciate the humanitarian value of this work, focusing as it does on issues of child rights in the context of China's most disadvantaged children — gu'er, otherwise known as "the lonely orphans."
     High's book is the result of in-depth socio-legal case-based research published by the Routledge Contemporary China Series focusing on the legal grey zone of non-state orga­nized gu'er relief in contemporary China. It draws on a multi-year process participant observation and semi-structured interviews with non-governmental organizations (NG0s) and private caregivers across rural and urban China to shed light on the ambiguous role of law in child welfare. The author's nearly decade-long longitudinal ethnographic fieldwork reflects recent developments in Chinese charity law, with particular reference to the silent, and at times invisible, uphill struggle of non-governmental gu'er welfare pro­viders in China.
     In the opening chapters of the book, High provides background on the condition of Chinese gu'er. Drawing on extensive fieldwork, High systematically depicts the causes of abandonment, the vulnerability of the orphan, and, importantly, the contri­bution of private caregivers. She illustrates individual stories through in-depth case-studies to provide context for the rapidly changing laws and policies in the private relief sector. Importantly, she highlights the political and ideological context sur­rounding the sensitive question of "who looks after our children" in the Chinese context ... 

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Cora Chan on Legal Pluralism and the Dual State: Evolution of the Relationship between the Chinese and Hong Kong Legal Orders (Law and Ethics of Human Rights)

The Law and Ethics of Human RightsIssue16, Volume 1, pp. 99-135
Published in 2022
Abstract: This article provides the first-ever comprehensive analysis of how the relationship between the Chinese and Hong Kong legal orders has morphed in nature since China’s resumption of sovereignty over Hong Kong in 1997. It argues that the relationship has evolved from a form of legal pluralism found in the European Union to a monist but bifurcated system—to a “dual state,” to borrow from Ernst Fraenkel’s theory. Recent events, including Beijing’s imposition of a national security law on Hong Kong and its overhaul of Hong Kong’s election methods, have consolidated that evolution. The analysis herein not only enables us to make sense of the developments in the China-Hong Kong relationship, but has five wider theoretical implications. First, it suggests a way of distinguishing a dual state from a fully liberal legal system. Second, it discerns the similarities and differences between legal pluralism and dual state. Third, it connects the literature on theories of legal order and that on the dual state. Fourth, it clarifies the relationship between theories of legal order and regime types. Finally, Hong Kong’s experience reveals the challenges of and potential mechanisms for maintaining liberal values in an authoritarian regime.

Thursday, September 22, 2022

HKU Law Welcomes Trust and Equity Scholar, Dr Jing Hui

Dr JING Hui has joined HKU Faculty of Law on 1 July 2022 as Assistant Professor. Dr Jing obtained his LLB and master degree (by research) in Intellectual Property Law from Peking University. He completed his PhD at the University of Melbourne. Prior to joining HKU, Dr Jing was Assistant Professor at the City University of Hong Kong's School of Law. His teaching and research interests encompass equity and trust, property, intellectual property law and charity law.  His recent publications include "Risk Allocation: the Contractual Practice of Chinese Charitable Trusts" and ""Enforcing Charitable Trusts: a Study on the English Necessary Interest Rule".

Hui Jing on Enforcing Charitable Trusts: a Study on the English Necessary Interest Rule (Legal Studies)

"Enforcing charitable trusts: a study on the English necessary interest rule"
Hui Jing
Legal Studies
Volume 42 , Issue 2, June 2022, pp. 228 - 245
Published in June 2022
Abstract: In England, Parliament introduced the ‘necessary interest rule’ through the enactment of section 115 of the Charities Act 2011 (England and Wales), allowing ‘any person interested’ in a charitable trust to initiate charity proceedings against defaulting trustees in their administration of charitable assets. Nevertheless, insufficient attention has been paid to this rule despite it being initially enacted in 1853. Parliament has refrained from clearly defining the rule, and the courts have long been grappling with its meaning in determining whether a person is eligible to sue. This paper studies the necessary interest rule by exploring the way in which the courts have interpreted it and the uncertainties surrounding its operation. It is shown that, in the context of charitable trusts, the concern of securing the due administration and execution of the trust lies at the heart of the rule. The final section of this paper discusses the significant theoretical implications of the necessary interest rule. It considers the beneficiary-enforcer debate concerning the conceptual nature of express trusts and highlights the insights that analysis of the rule can provide into this debate.

Monday, September 19, 2022

Angela Zhang on How Antitrust Facilitates China’s Goal to Achieve Technological Self-Sufficiency (China Platform Governance)

Published on 27 June 2022
Introduction: This essay is part of The Four Domains of Global Platform Governance, an essay series that examines platform governance from four distinct policy angles: content, data, competition and infrastructure.
     Ant Group’s attempted initial public offering (IPO) in 2020 was to be the biggest in world history. If it had succeeded, 18 Chinese individuals would have become billionaires overnight. Unfortunately for Ant, Chinese regulators put the brakes on the deal just two days before it was to go ahead (Yang and Wei 2020). Ant never became the biggest IPO in Chinese history, while Alibaba (Ant’s affiliated company) would, just a few months later, become the recipient of the biggest fine ever issued by Chinese antitrust authorities. The months leading up to that US$2.8 billion1 fine were characterized by a fierce antitrust campaign aimed at China’s tech giants, all of whom have since faced some level of regulatory scrutiny over their business practices. .... Click here to read the full text. 

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Syren Johnstone on Regulating for Blockchain Ecosystem Development and Getting Past the Stumbling Block of Regulatory Incrementalism (Stanford Journal of Blockchain Law & Policy)

Vol. 5 No. 2, 261-269
Published on 29 June 2022
Abstract: This paper explores why we need to think differently about the oversight of cryptoassets to avoid the costs of regulatory incrementalism, and proposes how we might develop a more meaningful regulatory response that better engages with blockchain’s fundamental characteristics.

Friday, September 16, 2022

HKU Law's LLM (ADR): Newsletter (June 2022)

We are grateful to our students, alumni and wider community for its continued support of the LLM Arbitration and Dispute Resolution Program described as “a unique and internationalized programme with well-developed curriculum, diverse student body … high quality teachers… [and] professional accreditation (i.e., CIArb, HKMAAL) and strong connections with highly regarded arbitral institutions.” We thank Sarah Grimmer for her invaluable contributions to our Arbitration law teaching this past year and wish her well in Singapore. We also thank Mr. Cameron Sim, Ms. Elizabeth Chan, Dr. James Chiu, Ms. Sabrina Ho, Ms. Jojo Fan and Mr. Jonathan Wong for their public talks. We value your input and support. Please visit our website to learn more.

Conflict Prevention & Peacebuilding: The LLM program was delighted by the active participation of students in the Preventative Law: Approaches to Conflict Prevention and Resolution course last term. Student explored the dynamics of peace building and sustainable community engagement through class presentations, dialogue process, discussions with pe and research papers.

Vis East Achievements: We celebrate our highly ranked Willem C. Vis (East) Moot team which received Honorable Mentions for the Best Written Memorandum for Claimant. Paul and Kai Tik received Honorable Mentions for the Best Individual Oral Advocate. Many thanks to Mr. Michal Čáp (lead coach) and Professor Shahla Ali, and Olga Boltenko for coaching support.

Faculty Interview
The LLM Arbitration and Dispute Resolution program director was recently interviewed for the Faculty website. A link to the interview can be found here:

  James D. Fry
Deconstructing Dud Disarmament Disputes
Journal of Conflict and Security Law, Volume 26, Issue 1, Spring 2021, Pages 185-218
[read more]

Olga Boltenko
Balancing the Protection of Foreign Investors and States Responses in the Post-Pandemic World”.
[read more]

Shahla Ali
Decentralized Global Legal Ordering
Michigan State Law Review, Forthcoming
University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law Research Paper No. 2022/11
[read more]

Anselmo, R., & Weixia, G. (2021). Multi-Tier Approaches to the Resolution of International Disputes Cambridge University Press.
[read more]

Weixia Gu
The Global Rise of International Commercial Courts: Typology and Power Dynamics
Chicago Journal of International Law
[read more]

Angela Zhang
Improving Dispute Resolution in Two-Sided Platforms: The Case of Review Blackmail
[read more]


Thursday, September 15, 2022

CMEL e-Newsletter (July-August 2022 Issue)

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Dr Philip S. L. Beh, Prof Gabriel M. Leung and Dr Priscilla Song have recently completed their appointments:

  • Dr Beh: CMEL Co-Director (Medicine);
  • Prof Leung: Dean of the LKS Faculty of Medicine and ex-officio member of the CMEL Executive Board ("EB"); 
  • Dr Song: member of EB.

We are grateful to Dr Beh for his many pivotal contributions and to Prof Leung and Dr Song for their support and guidance.

We warmly welcome Prof Gilberto K. K. Leung, Prof Chak Sing Lau and Dr Julie Y. Chen, who have taken up the appointments below:

  • Prof Leung: CMEL Co-Director (Medicine);
  • Prof Lau: Dean of the LKS Faculty of Medicine and ex-officio member of EB; 
  • Dr Chen: member of EB.

Dr Haochen Sun, CMEL Research Fellow, has been promoted to full professor. We send him our heartiest congratulations.

Additionally, we are pleased to announce that CMEL Co-Director Dr Calvin W. L. Ho has been awarded a grant by the Research Grants Council to study the regulatory governance of medical AI in the Greater Bay Area. Prof Gilberto K. K. Leung will also be involved in this study.

Last but not least, we have presented in this newsletter various research and medical law updates and a collection of MBBS student essays


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"Credentialling—Myths, Challenges and Spirit"

In Hong Kong Medical Journal 

Gilberto K. K. Leung is a co-author.

"Respecting Values and Perspectives in Biobanking and Genetic Research Governance: Outcomes of a Qualitative Study in Bengaluru, India"

In Wellcome Open Research

Calvin W. L. Ho is a contributing author.



Project title: "Regulatory Governance of AI in Medicine in the Greater Bay Area"; Project to commence from 1 November 2022 and will run for 18 months. Funder: RGC General Research Fund 2022/2023. Principal investigator: Calvin W. L. Ho.



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Readers interested in learning more about the papers marked with an asterisk (*) below are welcome to contact Ms Daisy CheungDr Calvin W. L. Ho at

*Ms Daisy Cheung presented a paper entitled "Implementing Will and Preferences in Adult Guardianship Regimes of Confucian Societies: Redefining the Problem" at the 7th World Congress on Adult Capacity, which took place in Edinburgh, Scotland from 7 to 9 June 2022. 

*Dr Calvin W. L. Ho presented a paper entitled "Surmounting Colonisation by Data in the Use of AI and Analytics for Cost Predictions in Health Insurance" at the Global Meeting on Law & Society, which took place in Lisbon, Portugal, from 13 to 16 July 2022.

*In collaboration with Ms Alison Hall (PHG Foundation, University of Cambridge), Ms Mathavi Senguttuvan (NUS) and Dr Karel Caals (NUS), Dr Calvin W. L. Ho conducted and presented in a symposium entitled "Digitalization of Contact Tracing and Proximity Tracking in East and South Asia: Ethical Lessons for the Post COVID-19 Era", which took place in Basel, Switzerland, from 20 to 22 July 2022. This project was funded in part by a grant awarded by the World Health Organization.

*Dr Calvin W. L. Ho presented on "Ethical and Legal Challenges in the Use of Genomic Data in Big Data Research and in the Development of Medical AI" in a workshop on " Societal Impact and Response to AI and Data Intensive Research Use of Genomic Data" organised by Eurac Research at Brocher Foundation (Geneva, Switzerland) on 10 & 11 August 2022.

*Dr Calvin W. L. Ho presented on "Consent and Explainability in the Development and Implementation of Medical AI" in a hybrid international conference on "ELSI of Internet of Medical Things and Healthcare AI" organised by the Asian Institute for Bioethics and Health Law, Yonsei University (Seoul, South Korea) on 22 & 23 August 2022.

Dr Calvin W. L. Ho also gave the following webinar presentations: 

  • a presentation entitled "Bridging the Research-Therapy Divide in the Regulatory Governance of Artificial Intelligence as Medical Devices" in a webinar by the Master of Health Research Ethics (MOHRE) programme at Universiti Malaya, which took place on 24 June 2022 (recording available here);
  • a presentation on "Digital Capabilities", which was part of a webinar by the Epidemic Ethics Network (Oxford) entitled "Ethical Priorities for a New International Instrument on Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response ", which took place on 25 July 2022 (recording available here);
  • a presentation entitled "Regulatory Governance of AI in Medicine in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area in China" in a webinar by the Bioethics Centre at the University of Otago, which took place on 22 August 2022 (recording to be made available on the organiser’s website in due course).


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"Hong Kong’s Ban on CBD Products Leaves Companies Facing Ruin"

On Bloomberg (12 August 2022)

In an interview with Bloomberg, CMEL Co-Director Dr Calvin W. L. Ho shared his views on Hong Kong’s proposed ban on cannabidiol (CBD) products.




MEHU Updates Banner



The Wu Jieh Yee Prize in Medical Ethics and Law (伍絜宜醫學倫理與法律短評獎) was established in 2019 with the support of the Wu Jieh Yee Charitable Foundation to encourage medical students to embrace critical analysis of contemporary issues in medical ethics and law. It is awarded annually to an MBBS Year 5 student on the basis of performance of assessed work in the Medical Ethics and Law curriculum and the quality of a scholarly essay.  

The 2021-22 essays have now been published on the Medical Ethics and Humanities website and are worth a read. They demonstrate students’ willingness and skill in engaging with difficult and sometimes contentious topics. Each essay is shared with the author’s permission, in the hope of triggering open and meaningful conversation that will contribute to the betterment of humankind.

We welcome you to explore!

Prize Winner:   CHEUNG Ka Yuet Kylie

Ethical Considerations of Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Among Healthcare Workers in Hong Kong 

Healthcare workers are one of the most important populations to target for COVID-19 vaccination strategies due to their increased exposure to high-risk patients and potential risk of transmission within the hospital environment. As vaccine hesitancy can potentially exacerbate the impact of the pandemic, mandates for such vaccines have been proposed for healthcare workers. Thus, renewed discussions about the ethics of such policies are discussed in this essay.

"I was initially inspired to write the essay about vaccine mandates after reading a series of news articles about UK and US health-care workers protesting against COVID-19 vaccine mandates. As the fifth wave was beginning to strike Hong Kong at that time and vaccine hesitancy was prevalent, I thought it would be timely to explore the topic in a more local context."

Notable essay:  LAU Hiu Yin Dawn 

Transgender in Hong Kong: Ethics and Medicolegal Perspectives 

This essay explores the topic of being transgender in Hong Kong and how it relates to the local medical system, from the points of view of patients and healthcare professionals alike. The often-overlooked discrimination and obstacles that transgender individuals face under the current system are highlighted with an aim to shine light on the ethical issues and provoke thought in students and workers in the field.  

"The transgender community within the medical field is largely underground and invisible. As a member of said community in a society that largely misunderstands us, and from the unique position of both an aspiring doctor and a patient, I was inspired to gather the experiences of others in similar situations, as one of our tiny steps towards a better future."




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The Medical Council of Hong Kong has issued Questions and Answers to the Ethical Guidelines on Practice of Telemedicine



The Employment (Amendment) Ordinance 2022 has come into effect in Hong Kong. 

It addresses employment-related issues arising from the implementation of anti-epidemic measures, such as issues of dismissal and sickness allowance. 





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The Centre for Medical Ethics and Law (CMEL) develops new ideas and solutions in response to the big ethical, legal and policy questions of medicine and health.


CMEL is the first cross-faculty interdisciplinary institution of its kind in the region. It was founded in 2012 by the LKS Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Law at The University of Hong Kong as a joint inheritor of their vibrant intellectual traditions dating back to 1887 and 1969 respectively.

Today, CMEL brings together bioethicists, academic lawyers, medical scientists, and other scholars to conduct cutting edge bioethical and legal research and contribute to policy development in flagship areas like population and global health, mental health and capacity, and digital health and emergent technologies.
Research, teaching and knowledge exchange—CMEL’s core initiatives—aim to ensure that developments in biomedicine and public health will be underpinned by ethical and legal considerations.


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Centre for Medical Ethics and Law

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