ARIAS Asia, the AIDA Reinsurance and Insurance Arbitration Association, which is a member of the Association Internationale de Droit des Assurances, (AIDA) or International Insurance Law Association, launched in mid-October 2017 after its incorporation.
ARIAS Asia is a not-for-profit organization that promotes the improvement of the insurance and reinsurance arbitration and mediation processes for the international and domestic markets. With ARIAS chapters in several countries including the United Kingdom, United States, Germany, South America, and France, the Hong Kong chapter is one of the first in Asia.
The association aims to support international dispute resolution structures for insurance and reinsurance matters, ensuring that claims are dealt with by experts in the field, by encouraging current and retired market practitioners to become part of a panel of independent arbitrators, suitably trained in arbitration procedures, with industry insights, as well as training insurance arbitrators and mediators, and those from the wider industry and consumers.
The brainchild of Professor Robert Merkin QC, a leading legal academic in insurance law originated the idea of establishing ARIAS Asia, supported by the Hong Kong Insurance Law Association and Hong Kong Arbitration charity ball. It was launched during Hong Kong arbitration week 2017 by arbitrator and barrister, Mary Thomson of Pacific Chambers and a steering committee.