It will come as no surprise to the readers of this blog that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on international arbitration (see blog coverage here).  In this post, we take a look back at 2020 to consider the intersection of the pandemic, investment, and human rights.  In February 2020, one of…

Corruption, annulment of arbitral awards and court intervention mark the main developments for 2020 in Latin America.  Our contributors this year reported on the most important judicial decisions and legislative measures impacting the legal framework of various jurisdictions in the region. A new ‘hot topic’ arising from the COVID-19 pandemic is the interplay between arbitration…

On 6 July 2020 the Swiss Federal Tribunal has issued a decision in which it has held that the COVID-19 pandemic does not serve as a sufficient justification to impose virtual hearings in state court proceedings against a party’s will. With a view to field of arbitration, the question thus arises whether the respective reasoning…

Welcome to the Kluwer Arbitration Blog, Ms. Sámano!  We are grateful for this opportunity to learn more about the Arbitration Center of Mexico – CAM; the type of disputes it handles and the way it is addressing recent developments, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the adoption of new policies from the Andrés Manuel López…

COVID-19 has already destroyed many businesses, and insolvencies will only increase as governments withdraw temporary protections. Recent decisions highlight the potential for external administrators of these insolvent companies to use investment treaty arbitration to recover assets, even from the state that appointed the administrators. Generally, external administrators are appointed by directors, creditors or courts to…

The first edition of Washington Arbitration Week or WAW, took place on-line from November 30 to December 4, 2020, hosting 15 panels with over 4,000 registrations and 1,476 attendees. This post aims to provide a flavor of the first day of programming. The Co-Chairs of WAW, Ian Laird and Dr. Jose Antonio Rivas, opened the…

Climate change and increasing calls for greater diversity in the workplace have been making headlines daily. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world, including that of international arbitration, has turned to a virtual setting to conduct many of its operations. While this new terrain has resulted in technical obstacles and challenges, it has…

On 5-6 November 2020, reputable arbitration practitioners joined together for the 9th Asia Pacific ADR Conference and shared their experiences and insights on the latest developments in the arbitration landscape. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the annual conference took place virtually. It successfully attracted approximately 15,000 participants across 50 countries. The event was co-hosted…

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, virtual witness testimonies were prevalent in specific instances, such as when witnesses could not reach the venue because of illness. Article 8.1 of IBA Rules on Taking of Evidence in International Arbitration permits virtual testimony only at the discretion of the tribunal. The Commentary on the Rules establishes that the tribunal’s…

As countries continue to grapple with the ongoing effects of COVID-19, the effects of the ongoing waves on parties vary widely. There have been recent discussions on force majeure and international arbitration on the Blog: see here, here, and here. This article will address the following points in relation to four key jurisdictions, being the…

One of the many consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic and the world-wide economic crisis has been the sharp increase of insolvency filings before national courts. Latin America is no stranger to this situation, having been part of the surge in business insolvencies. Brazil, in particular, has been a recent insolvency hotspot within Latin America. This…

On 23 July 2020, the Austrian Supreme Court (Oberster Gerichtshof, OGH) rendered a decision examining whether conducting an arbitration hearing by videoconference over the objection of a party may violate due process (Case No. 18 ONc 3/20s). To the authors’ knowledge, this decision, rendered in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, is the first national supreme court’s…

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;…

On the second day of the Hong Kong Arbitration Week 2020, the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (“BIICL”) hosted a virtual workshop on the impacts of technology and the pandemic which allows (or rather, demands) us to “re-imagine” arbitration.   Smart Contracts, Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies The first panel discussion addressed “Smart Contracts, Blockchain…

The first day of Hong Kong Arbitration Week 2020, hosted by the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (“HKIAC”), was an opportunity for practitioners to discuss the topic: “Socially Distanced or Procedurally Flawed: International Arbitration in times of COVID“, which sought to address some of the ever-evolving challenges of conducting virtual hearings in times of COVID….

This is the second of a two-part blog post series for an upcoming publication titled International Arbitration and the COVID-19 Revolution edited by us. As detailed in Part 1 of this series, the book contains 17 chapters from 31 leading international arbitration practitioners. The focus of the contributions range from procedural topics in international arbitration…

The COVID-19 pandemic has exerted an unprecedented impact on individuals, entities, businesses, and states. National court systems and alternative dispute resolution regimes have also been severely affected. Yet, international arbitration has demonstrated itself to be both adaptable and resilient throughout the crisis and emerged more strongly positioned as a method of dispute resolution for a…

Chile confirmed its first case of COVID-19 on March 3, 2020. Since then, Chilean institutions have designed several solutions to adjust their operation during the sanitary crisis. This brief report provides information about the legislation passed by the Chilean Congress to regulate judicial proceedings. Specifically, we offer an overview of the impact of Law 21,226…

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in the interest in alternative dispute resolution, especially arbitrations conducted online. The greater utilization of online platforms and digitization has coincided with the growing frequency and sophistication of cyber-attacks. Reportedly, by 2021 a business will fall victim to cyber-attacks every 11 seconds. Therefore, it is critical for…

Once one gets past the fact that the word “asynchronous” is impossible to pronounce or spell, it is an interesting concept, including for international arbitration. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “not existing or occurring at the same time, not coinciding in time.” If you think about TV shows, for instance, some are broadcast…

The Singapore International Arbitration Centre (“SIAC”) hosted its Congress on 2 September 2020.  For the first time, the Congress was held virtually.  The Chairman of the Board of Directors of SIAC, Mr Davinder Singh, SC, in his welcome address thanked over 1,000 attendees for attending virtually from all over the world despite time zone differences. …

In normal times, the 32nd Annual ITA Workshop and Annual Meeting would have been an in-person summer event held in Austin, Texas. In this brave new world, the Workshop was completely reimagined to be held virtually via Zoom on 17 – 19 June 2020. Introduced by Joseph E. Neuhaus (ITA Chair, Sullivan & Cromwell), and…

The COVID-19 outbreak as of now affects 183 states and a number of territories. Out of 164 State signatories to the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards 1958 (the “New York Convention”) only Marshall Islands, Tonga, Palau are not affected by the pandemic; all 153 state members to the ICSID Convention…

Virtual hearings are not a new idea. The arbitration community only started to seriously discuss the benefits and the logistics of having virtual hearings in lieu of physical hearings when the world was put on pause by COVID-19 in around February 2020. It is not easy to organize a virtual hearing, let alone all the…