On 6 October 2020, the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) approved and released its 2021 Rules of Arbitration (2021 Rules), in draft. These Rules are subject to editorial changes and the final version is to be officially launched in December 2020. The 2021 Rules of Arbitration will then come…

February 2020: Everyone was looking at the events calendar for the year. Flights were booked, hotel prices had been compared and the list of people that we hoped to meet and speak to at various conferences was growing longer. Fast forward four months to June 2020 and the picture was bleak: all in-person events cancelled;…

Singapore has emerged as one of the leading international arbitration centers not only in Asia but also in the world. To keep this title, the Singapore Ministry of Law (“Ministry of Law”) played a major role by keeping track on international and commercial legislative developments, and, adapting and framing innovative legislations to promote international arbitration….

A single-judge bench of the Calcutta High Court (Calcutta HC) recently delivered a judgement in Balasore Alloys Ltd. v. Medima LLC which revived the debate regarding whether a ‘civil court has jurisdiction to grant anti-arbitration injunctions in foreign seated arbitrations?’ This decision requires a careful examination because of its impact on 1) the arbitration-friendly reputation…

The economic downturn in Thailand has resulted in increased pressure on Thai debtors. Several banks have forecasted Thailand’s gross domestic product (GDP) to contract 8.1 percent in 2020 due to a more severe than expected COVID-19 pandemic and the containment measures implemented by governments in many countries including Thailand. Creditors who are party to an…

In its decision of 11 June 2020, an ICSID Annulment Committee annulled an award in Eiser and Energia Solar Luxembourg v. Spain, ICSID Case No. ARB/13/36. It did so on the grounds that the arbitrator appointed by the investors, Stanimir Alexandrov, and his former law firm, Sidley Austin, had worked so closely and frequently with…

The draft bill for the revision of the 12th Chapter of the Swiss Private International Law (“PILA”) was recently approved by the Swiss legislator (as analyzed previously on this blog). Besides permitting the filing of set-aside motions in the English language, the provisions regulating the court assistance have also been revised and adjusted with the…

In a recent decision, New York State’s highest court (the New York Court of Appeals) rejected an argument that a tribunal exceeded its authority, as to warrant vacatur, when it reconsidered and corrected an earlier decision rendered in a “partial final award.”  The Court concluded that arbitrators are not functus officio to reconsider an interim…

In early September 2020, the United Kingdom (‘UK’) Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, conceded in no uncertain terms that the UK Internal Market Bill would violate public international law, albeit only in “a very specific and limited way“. This immediately caused controversy, to put it mildly. The EU Commission did not take…

Of the six States that have ratified the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation (“Convention”) only Singapore seems to have made any requisite preparation for its implementation, by passing the Singapore Convention Mediation Act in February 2020. Yet, following the Convention’s entry into force on 12 September 2020, forthcoming developments in…

Expedited arbitration is often associated with smaller value disputes. For example, the International Chamber of Commerce suggests expedited arbitration for disputes of $2 million or less, while the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre has a $3 million threshold for expedited arbitration. Expedited arbitration makes procedural tradeoffs that are deemed warranted because there isn’t that much…

Introducing a regulation of early determination in the context of expedited proceedings, highlights a series conflicting interests. Therefore, the UNCITRAL Working Group II on dispute resolution has not yet taken a final position on whether such a regulation should be inserted in the context of expedited arbitration, or whether it should rather be considered as…

UNCITRAL’s Working Group II (“WGII”) resumes next week its work on drafting expedited arbitration provisions (“EAPs”) for use with the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules (“UARs”).  One of the key “aims” underlying development of these procedures is “to improve the efficiency and quality of arbitral proceedings.”  This post examines why efficiency matters, how the EAPs encourage efficiency,…

60 member states and several more non-governmental organizations (NGOs) will soon gather (in person in Vienna and virtually) to commence the 72nd Session of UNCITRAL Working Group II (WGII).  The topic and issues of Expedited Arbitration Procedures (EAPs) was primed at the 69th Session of the WGII in New York, including how best to improve…

The UNCITRAL Working Group II (“WG II”) will continue its work on drafting expedited arbitration provisions (EAPs) at its next session in Vienna on September 21 – 25, 2020. This post briefly considers some of the key points that will be addressed at the session relating to the form and scope of the EAPs. This…

Arbitrating investment disputes has its peculiarities stemming out of the nature of the dispute, as well as from the parties involved, which become relevant when assessing the feasibility of implementing expedited arbitration provisions. ICSID Arbitration Rules and UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, the main arbitration rules currently used for investment arbitration proceedings, are in the process of…

Next week, the seventy-second session of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law’s (“UNCITRAL”) Working Group II (“WG II”), considering the issue of expedited arbitration, will be held in a hybrid system, with participants being able to take part in the session either in person, in Vienna, or remotely, via an online platform. The…

Egypt recently set out a legal framework for the protection and regulation of personal data. The legislation was brought about to regulate the protection of personal data which is stored and processed electronically. However, the law is silent on its application to arbitration and arbitral proceedings. The intersection between arbitration and data protection is not…

In June 2020, the English High Court of Justice (Mr Butcher J) issued a judgment in Obrascon Huarte Lain SA & Anor v Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development dealing with an application under ss. 67 and 68(2)(b) of the English Arbitration Act 1996 (the “Arbitration Act”) for the setting aside an Addendum…

The biennial 2020 Arbitration in Africa Survey Report (2020 Survey), which is the second in the series, is focused on top African arbitral centres and seats. It identifies the top and busiest arbitral centres in Africa. The survey was commissioned by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and sponsored by the law firm…

International arbitration is on the rise in South Africa.  This is partly a result of the country’s new arbitration law, which was passed in 2017, but now the process has been given a further boost by the publication by the Arbitration Foundation of Southern Africa (AFSA) of its draft International Arbitration Rules (the Draft Rules),…

The data protection regime in the UAE is complicated. Parties to arbitrations that have connections to the UAE, regardless of whether the arbitrations are seated here, should be aware of the data protection regime(s) that may apply to them to ensure that no unintended breaches occur and to consider whether the relevant data protection regulations…

On 26 May 2020, the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), a networking and business support organisation that caters to the London business community, launched the London Chamber of Arbitration and Mediation (LCAM). The LCAM is a new organisation offering arbitration, expedited arbitration and mediation services. This post will explore selected features of the…

The Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) has recently become a household name, moving from the oblivion of the 1990s, when the treaty was drafted, to one of the most hotly debated topics in legal (and other) circles nowadays. Some have demonized it as an instrument for the corporate usurpation of democratic functions, such as the host…