The third Free Trade Port (Zone) International Maritime Affairs Legal Forum was held in Zhoushan, East China's Zhejiang province on Nov 9.
Eight experts in arbitration and conciliation of commercial and maritime affairs shared their opinions via video.
Li Hu, deputy director of China Maritime Arbitration Commission, believes that the rule of law creates the best business environment.
As the internationally accepted way of dispute settlement, maritime arbitration plays a significant role in facilitating the trade in free trade ports and zones, said Li.
As such, he suggests that the quality and efficiency of maritime arbitration should be improved to further develop free trade ports and zones.
Sun Xiaoqing, senior legal business expert from Sinopec Group, noted that China's increasingly professional arbitrators have earned the country more opportunities to have maritime dispute resolutions settled in Beijing, Shanghai, and Zhoushan.
She also said that Chinese arbitral institutions should improve their professional competence as well as strengthen exchanges with international counterparts and courts to discuss ways to improve current legal principles and provisions.
Zhuang Wei, general manager of the Asian area of the Baltic and International Maritime Conference, suggested that Zhoushan offer one-stop legal services involving ship maintenance and fuel filling to improve the international influence of the China (Zhejiang) Pilot Free Trade Zone as well as bring in and cultivate more legal service professionals.
Zhang Wenguang from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences believes that familiar rules, people and language are key to attracting maritime disputes concerning foreign people to be settled in China. In this vein, he suggests the country should introduce more foreign professionals and encourage Chinese professionals to seek job opportunities overseas.