The recent annulment decision in Tza Yap Shum v. Peru (ICSID Case No. ARB/07/6) has brought back the discussion regarding the ‘pure’ adversarial nature of investor-state arbitration system. Mr. Shum, a Chinese investor claimed indirect expropriation under the Agreement on Promotion and Reciprocal Protection of Investments (APPRI) between the Governments of Peru and China arising…

In one of the very rare decisions issued by courts in the Arab world applying the provisions of the Unified Agreement for the Investment of Arab Capital in the Arab States (the “UAIAC”), the Cairo Court of Appeal has revived in its decision dated February 5, 2014, the principle of finality of arbitration awards, by…

By Lorraine M. Brennan, Esq The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and should not be regarded as representative of, or binding upon ArbitralWomen and/or the author’s institution.  The international arbitration community sat up and took notice when a recent decision issued by Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein from the Southern…

Introduction On 13 March 2014, Thailand’s Central Administrative Court annulled an arbitration award in the case between Hong Kong-based Hopewell Holding and the Thai Ministry of Transport (“MoT”) and State Railway of Thailand (“SRT”). The dispute arose out of a 30-year concession dating back to 1990 to build a 60-km elevated highway and rail line…

By Matthias Scherer and Sam Moss, LALIVE In a judgment dated 7 July 2014, which was made public on 20 August 2014 (case no. 4A_124/2014), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court (the “Supreme Court”) addressed the enforceability of a precondition for arbitration in a multi-tier dispute resolution provision, namely the requirement to submit a dispute to…

and Oleg Temnikov Foreword The recent decision on preliminary objections, dated 17 January 2014, against the application for annulment in Elsamex S.A. v. Honduras (ARB/09/4) brought renewed interest in the procedure for summary dismissal of unmeritorious claims under Rule 41(5) of the ICSID Arbitration Rules. The present post examines shortly this procedure as well as…

An English court recently ruled on important questions relating to arbitration due process. In Interprods Ltd v De La Rue International Ltd, [2014] EWHC 68 (Comm), the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court dismissed an application to annul an arbitral award rendered by a sole arbitrator sitting in London. The circumstances that gave rise…

In an encouraging ruling of earlier this year (see Case No. 249 of 2013 – Middle East Foundations LLC v. Meydan Group LLC (formerly Meydan LLC), Commercial Appeal, ruling of the Dubai Court of Appeal of 15 January 2014), the Dubai Court of Appeal confirmed the time extension provisions for rendering final awards under the…

One of the most important elements to consider when participating in arbitration proceedings is the available mechanisms to challenge the award of the arbitral tribunal. This element acquires an added significance when it comes to international arbitration where the award may be enforced in several jurisdictions. With that in mind, it is pertinent to refer…

Article 52(4) of the ICSID Convention identifies the provisions of the Convention that apply, mutatis mutandis, to annulment proceedings:  “[t]he provisions of Articles 41–45, 48, 49, 53 and 54, and of Chapters VI and VII . . . .”  While there is wide agreement that an annulment committee may neither “amend or replace the award…

An earlier post examined the general limitations on arbitral discretion. This part will look into the question of actions taken proprio motu and the limits thereto. Functions exercisable proprio motu are perceived as a special case of application of the discretionary powers enjoyed by a tribunal. Actions taken proprio motu must be distinguished from functions…

The problem of arbitral discretion has major implications on the rights of the parties. It is a concept foundational to international arbitration. Yet, it has proven to be so elusive as to escape any definition or treatment in literature. Why is this topic important? In order to answer this question, let us take pre-award interest…

On 6 September 2012, the Indian Supreme Court delivered its much-awaited judgment in Bharat Aluminium Co v. Kaiser Aluminium Technical Services (‘BALCO’). For the reasons discussed in detail below, the 190-page long BALCO decision is likely to go down in the annals of arbitration reports as the watershed decision that heralded a new dawn for…

The Supreme Court of India has finally spoken to deliver a definitive ruling on the role of Indian courts in international arbitrations seated outside India. Overruling the controversial decision of Bhatia International v Bulk Trading (2002), the Supreme Court held that Indian courts do not have supervisory authority over international arbitrations taking place outside India….

Our interest on this topic has been provoked by a reading of the Repsol v. Petroecuador Stay Orders (See ICSID Case No. ARB/01/10, Procedural Order No. 1 (Unofficial translation), 22 December 2005; Procedural Order No. 4 Termination of Stay (Unofficial translation), 22 February 2006) in the context of a research on conditional stay of enforcement…

On 13 January 2011, the Belgian Supreme Court (Cour de cassation/Hof van cassatie) ruled that an arbitral award could be set aside by a Belgian judge on the basis of a contradiction in the award’s motivation. In so ruling, the Belgian Supreme Court took a view opposite to that of the French Supreme Court (Cour…

With its decision of 27 March 2012, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court held unlawful a disciplinary sanction by which FIFA threatened the football player Matuzalem with a lifetime ban in case he failed to pay a damage claim of his former club and employer. By an earlier decision of the CAS, Francelino da Silva Matuzalem,…

When the Arbitrazh Court of Kemerovo Region in Siberia granted leave to recognize an annulled ICC award in 2011 for the first time, international and domestic commentators rushed to acclaim the new arbitration-friendly attitude of the Russian courts, thus placing Russia ‘into line with a select number of jurisdictions’ (e.g. France and the Netherlands). Some…

It has become fashionable in recent years, each time an ICSID annulment decision is released that takes issue with the procedures or reasoning of an ICSID tribunal, for commentators to bemoan the lack of certainty, predictability and finality that this reflects in the ICSID system for adjudicating investment treaty disputes between investors and host States….

After the 2011 Decree which reformed French arbitration law, the number of countries having arbitration acts expressly providing for the possibility of waiving setting aside proceedings at the seat has increased. In view of the fact that arbitration rules of some institutions provide for a waiver of “any form of recourse” against awards rendered under…

Iura novit curia (usually translated as “the court knows the law”) refers to the power and/or obligation of a court to conduct its own legal analysis outside the parties’ pleadings. While there are very few decisions on iura novit curia in the investment treaty arbitration context, a small number of investment treaty arbitral tribunals and…

The escalation of costs and delays in international arbitration and the consequent dissatisfaction of the system’s users have become prime subjects for users of and commentators on international arbitration. An informal study by the Corporate Counsel International Arbitration Group (CCIAG) in 2010 found that every single corporate counsel who was surveyed thought that arbitration ‘takes…

CIETAC’s Vice Chairman and Secretary General recently announced at a conference in London that CIETAC may soon permit parties to select arbitrators from outside the CIETAC list. As the CIETAC Rules currently allow parties to appoint off-list only if they have agreed to do so, this announcement suggests that CIETAC may in the future allow…

This blog post ventures preliminary views on current critiques about ICSID annulments, and sketches out a few ideas that may merit further exploration. Some recent annulment decisions questioned ICSID awards but did not annul them because the high standard for annulment was not met. There are states and investors who now worry that should they…