China: "一带一路"背景下以色列承认中国法院判决及其意义

Last Updated: 23 January 2018
Article by Aaron Yizhou Deng

一、被误解的经贸强

以色列是"一带一路"沿线国家之一,全名为"以色列国"(The State of Israel),独立于1948年。"2013年中以双边贸易额已达108.3亿美元,比1992年建交时增长了200多倍,同比分别增长9.4%和8.9%。中国是以色列在亚洲的第一大贸易伙伴,也是其全球第三大贸易伙伴。[1]"

然而,有些中国企业对以色列这个国家不甚了解,早些年由于媒体关于巴以冲突的大量报道,让人以为以色列是一个战乱国家,导致许多中国企业不敢跟以色列做生意。 

这是一个误解,以色列与巴勒斯坦的冲突只限于部分边境地带,并且近年来武装冲突已明显缓和。实际上,以色列国内社会稳定,科技和经济发达,人民富裕并有很强的购买力,是一个不可忽视的市场。 以色列在信息技术、制药、农业、新能源等很多方面技术先进。更为重要的是,除了以色列发达的国内经济外,以色列裔犹太人还直接或间接控制了欧美发达国家的巨额资本,以色列人在全世界范围内的经济影响不可小觑。中以之间具有悠久的友好交往历史,中国也是以色列人历次历史劫难的主要避难地,不少以色列人对中国怀有深厚感情。在笔者为众多以色列高科技企业及犹太人控制的欧美企业提供法律服务过程中,也能明显感受到以色列人对中国的信任和友好。因此,作为"一带一路"沿线国家之一,以色列完全具备成为中国企业"走出去"重要目的地和合作伙伴的潜质。相应地,中以双方在民商事司法领域的合作也难以避免。
 

二、以色列率先承 认中国判

国际司法协助最为重要的障碍与议题之一,是关于承认和执行对方法院判决的问题。尽管中国目前跟包括以色列在内的大多数国家尚未订立双边民商事司法协助协定或共同参加相关国际条约,但以色列与中国之间承认对方法院判决的司法实践,却领先于其他未同中国签订司法协助的国家,并率先建设性地建立了"互惠"关系。这对于中以司法合作互信的加强以及双边经济贸易的发展具有重大意义,尤其是提高了中国企业与以色列开展经贸往来的法律确定性,增强了对司法保障的信心。

由于不存在司法协助条约关系,根据国际法原则,双方法院在处理对方法院做出的判决的承认与执行案件时,只能依据其各自的国内法及互惠原则处理。迄今为止,中以双方法院尚没有不予承认对方法院民事判决的先例,但这反而为互惠原则的运用提供了良好条件。在此基础上,以色列方面已率先迈出积极步伐,对于中国法院的判决予以了承认和执行。

2017年8月,以色列高等法院对中国江苏省海外企业集团有限公司(以下简称海外集团)申请承认和执行中国江苏省南通市中级人民法院已生效的(2009)通中民三初字第0010号民事判决一案,做出维持以色列特拉维夫法院所作一审裁定的终审裁判:南通中院上述生效判决可以在以色列获得执行!这是以色列法院在中以两国没有司法协助条约的背景下,基于互惠原则首次承认和执行中国法院的民事判决,为中以两国法院互相承认和执行对方民事判决开创了良好的先例。

本案基本案情如下[2]:

2009年初,以色列籍公民Itshak Reitmann(以下简称"Reitmann")称其在乌克兰承包工程需招募大量建筑工人,先后以外国公司的名义与中国的海外集团公司签订合作合同,并收取了美元佣金。但工人派遣至乌克兰后无工可务,被提前遣送回国。

2009年3月5日,海外集团经办人储某将Reitmann告上了南通中院,请求判令被告返还其支付的佣金及相应利息,并承担全部诉讼费用。同年9月7日,海外集团作为有独立请求的第三人参加诉讼。法院将起诉书送达被告Reitmann后,Reitmann委托中国律师进行了应诉答辩。

南通中院经审理认为,被告Reitmann违反合作合同约定,导致大批工人到乌克兰后无工可务。海外集团的合同目的未能实现,工人均被提前遣返回国,双方合同已提前解除。据此,2009年12月14日,南通中院判决Reitmann返还海外集团已给付的佣金美元55.14万元和人民币8372615.36元,并负担案件受理费人民币108044元。判决送达后,双方均未上诉。

后因被告Reitmann在中国境内无可供执行财产,海外集团在判决生效后向以色列特拉维夫法院申请承认和执行上述中国判决。

在以色列特拉维夫法院的审理中,Reitmann辩称,以色列与中国之间不存在司法互助的关系,因此互惠原则不适用;相关争议应提交仲裁,因此南通中院对此纠纷无管辖权;南通中院在做出该判决过程中的司法程序有失公正,等等。

特拉维夫法院在判决中认为,根据以色列最高法院在互惠原则问题上的裁决,互惠原则旨在促进以色列与他国司法系统的合作关系,以色列法上的互惠原则适用条件比较宽松,只要他国执行以色列法院作出的裁决"存在合理潜在可能性",两国之间的司法协助事项就可以适用互惠原则。特拉维夫法院还认为,中国法院对于本案争议有管辖权,因为被告没有对中国法院提出任何管辖权异议,并参与了中国的诉讼程序,应视为接受中国法院的管辖。同时,被告在中国的诉讼程序中由中国当地的律所代理,其答辩的权利得到了保障。因此,特拉维夫法院作出一审判决认定,南通中院作出的(2009)通中民三初字第0010号民事判决可以在以色列执行。二审中,如上文所述,以色列高等法院维持原判。

三、对中以经贸关系的意

以色列的法律体系是深受英美普通法系的影响,并结合大陆法系优点和犹太法律传统而形成的一种混合法律体系,但渊源上仍以判例法为主。因此,以上案例将会在以色列法院系统形成具有约束力的先例(precedent),法院将来处理相似案件时,应当适用相同的规则。从本案判决要旨看,以色列法院承认和执行中国法院民事判决的原因有:

一是其最高法院判例确认互惠原则的适用条件宽松,其司法理念先进。二是中以两国之间还没有任何一方拒绝承认另一方判决的先例,对于互惠关系的认定不存在潜在的历史障碍。三是原、被告双方的中国法专家证人一致认为,中国法认可司法协助的互惠原则,《民事诉讼法》等相关法律就中国承认与执行外国判决的条件提供了明确法律依据。这就为以色列法院确认中国法院执行以色列法院裁判"存在合理潜在可能性"提供了依据。四是中以两国在商业等领域的互助关系日益加强。从公共利益的角度看,中以两国在司法上相互协助可改善两国在经济合作上的确定性,因此应当鼓励司法互助关系的发展。

以色列法院的积极举动是值得肯定和借鉴的。以笔者曾担任法官的经历看,目前为止中国法上的互惠原则在司法实践中仍旧以"事实互惠"为认定标准,只有当对方法院曾经认可过中国法院判决,中国法院才会认为双方存在互惠关系,并可基于互惠关系而承认对方法院做出的民事判决。虽然这样做看上去有利于维护抽象的司法主权,但却失于被动和狭隘,与中国深化改革开发的大方向也不适应。如果世界上所有国家只执行实际承认过本国法院判决的国家的判决,双方都不敢率先迈出建设性的第一步,那么所谓司法"互惠原则"就会变成僵尸条款,失去其本来意义。

因此,可以乐观地预见,中国企业将来如果有中国法院作出的判决需要到以色列法院申请执行,也会获得如同此案一样的积极结果;将来如果有以色列法院做出的民商事判决需要到中国法院申请承认和执行,也将很有可能获得中国法院准许。由于双方法院判决的相互承认和执行具有了切实的司法保障,双方企业在经贸交往中会更加具有法律安全感,减少了一份重大的法律风险。可见,中以在判决的承认和执行领域的司法协助和互信关系的加强,也必将有利于进一步推动两国经贸关系和其他方面的深入发展,这对于中国企业"一带一路"之行无疑是利好消息。


[1] 摘自社会科学文献出版社《以色列蓝皮书:以色列发展报告(2015)》一书。

[2] 本案案情编辑自顾建兵、陶新琴《以色列高等法院作出终审裁判首次承认并执行中国法院生效判决》,载于2017年8月16日最高人民法院手机客户端。

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
 
Related Articles
 
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions