Shanghai Maritime Court said that nearly 20 percent of the cases it heard last year involved residents outside the Chinese mainland.
The court finished 5,101 cases in 2016, up 8.28 percent from 2015, involving nearly 4.6 billion yuan (3 million). Of them, 983 concerned people from 36 countries and regions, including Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau.
Nearly 70 percent of disputes concerned transport and agency contracts. But the court said it is increasingly dealing with loan disputes relating to ship operation. Only 41 such cases were accepted by the court last year, but that was an 86 percent rise on 2015. The sums involved reached 573 million yuan, up 82 percent on 2015.
Also, the court said it had accepted more than 15 cases concerning oil spills in the sea over 2015 and 2016.
Labor disputes are another area of disputes. To better protect the legal rights of crew members, the court in 2014 started online judicial sales of ships. So far, 27 ships have been sold, raising 333 million yuan, enabling more than 100 crew members to be paid.