Under Chinese law, a claim for unpaid bunkers cannot be secured by a maritime lien.
Therefore, unless there is a supply contract between the claimant and the vessel's registered owners, any attempt to arrest a ship in China to secure a bunker claim is unlikely succeed.
From a legal perspective, as China is a civil law jurisdiction, the RES COGITANS judgment issued by the English Supreme Court may not have any substantial impact on Chinese law.
However, Chinese parties with disputes subject to English law/jurisdiction/arbitration are considering the effect of the RES COGITANS judgment.
Chinese physical suppliers/traders, who failed to receive payment from OWB, are still looking to achieve recovery from the shipowners in other jurisdictions.
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.