Israel: Israel Supreme Court Rules: Chinese Judgements Are Enforceable In Israel

Last Updated: 22 February 2018
Article by Eran Bareket, Rachel Lu and Gil Dagan

The Israeli Supreme Court recently issued an important and precedential decision recognizing, for the first time, the enforceability of Chinese court decisions in Israel.

In order to execute in Israel and collect monies due in accordance with a judgement rendered by a non-Israeli court, an Israeli court must first "recognize" such judgement. According to the Israeli Foreign Judgments' Enforcement Act, one of the conditions for such recognition is "the reciprocity requirement", i.e., potential enforcement of Israeli judgements in a corresponding situation in the foreign country. The recognition of a Chinese judgement as enforceable in the current case assumes that China would mutually enforce Israeli judgements in its territory, even though actual enforcement of Israeli judgements by China was not proven. The Israeli court openly declared that it takes the first step, to facilitate future reciprocity.

The recent judgement lends an additional layer of legal certainty to the growing and intensifying commercial ties between Chinese and Israeli businesses.


In 2008 an Israeli company and a Chinese company signed a contract for recruitment and delivery of Chinese builders for construction projects in Ukraine. The Chinese company, Jiangsu Overseas Group Co. Ltd., engaged in contract work for engineering projects out of China (exporting manpower, production and services supply, etc.). The Israeli company, owned by Yitzhak Reitman, an Israeli-based contractor, engaged in assigning workers for different projects around the world (Mr. Reitman spent time in China as a part of his business activity).

Chinese Proceedings

The relationship between the parties ran into difficulties and the Chinese company filed a lawsuit against Mr. Reitman in China. In due course, a restraining order was issued against Mr. Reitman and he was prohibited from leaving the country.

At the end of the legal proceedings against him, Mr. Reitman was obliged to pay the Chinese Company USD 551,400 (equivalent to approximately CNY 3,528,514.29) and CNY 8,372,615.32 (equivalent to approximately USD 1,308,489.25). Mr. Reitman eventually secured his exit from China before the judgement was given by the Chinese Court, and therefore the judgement was never executed.

Israeli Proceedings

The Chinese Company filed a petition to the Israeli District Court in Tel Aviv requesting the Court to declare that the Chinese judgement is enforceable according to the Israeli Foreign Judgements' Enforcement Act. The Act prescribes certain conditions for enforcement of a foreign country's judgement, most of which are listed under articles 3-4. Article 3 permits an Israeli court to declare that a foreign judgement is enforceable if it is executable and no longer appealable, it was given by a court authorized to do so (all by the laws of its country) and the obligations under the judgement are enforceable by Israeli law. All of these requirements were satisfied in the current case.

The main argument that arose between the parties related to the question of whether "the reciprocity requirement" under article 4 of the Israeli Act – which means mutual enforcement of Israeli and foreign court decisions – has been met. Articles 281-282 of the Chinese Civil Procedure Law allows for enforcement of foreign court decisions, but there was no evidence that such enforcement ever occurred in practice.

In an earlier case related to enforcement of a Russian court decision (CA 3081/12) the Israeli Supreme Court decided that a reasonable possibility of enforcement satisfies the requirement of reciprocity. Based on this decision, and even though there was no proof for previous enforcement of Israeli court decisions in China, the district court held that the Chinese court's decision is enforceable in Israel. The district court also ruled that the burden of proving that a Chinese court will not enforce Israeli judgements rests upon the defendant. Mr. Reitman provided no such proof in the case at hand.

The defendant appealed to the Israeli Supreme Court, which upheld the decision of the Tel Aviv District Court. The Supreme Court (Honorable Justice Danziger) explained that the need of enforcement is derived from the desire to prevent creation of a "vicious circle" where no country enforces the court decisions of another country. Justice Danziger also stressed that the decision to enforce the Chinese court's decision is related to the strengthening of commercial relationship between the two countries. A decision not to enforce Chinese court judgements might hurt business certainties and the described development of the commercial relationship. Mr. Reitman's appeal was therefore dismissed.


Israeli court has taken the first step in enforcing Chinese court decisions based on the assumption that China would do the same in the future. The judgement's precedent helps strengthen the warm business ties between the countries and contributes to the certainty of Chinese companies doing business with Israeli companies. Chinese companies can now rest assured when doing business with Israelis in China, knowing that if assistance regarding any dispute settled in China is needed from Israeli courts, it will not be ignored.

To the article in its Chinese version – Click here. 

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

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

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
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please 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 (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

To Use 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.


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.


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