Unlike some Western arbitration institutions which enacted institutional arbitration rules dedicated to construction disputes, such as the 2015 American Arbitration Association (AAA) Construction Industry Arbitration Rules, to date, the leading Russian arbitration providers have not developed any specific rules for construction-related disputes. However, such disputes hold rather high positions in the caseload, with a peak…

Since the annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation in 2014, a substantial number of investment claims, in particular expropriation claims, have been raised by Ukrainian nationals against the Russian Federation in relation to investments made in Crimea prior to the annexation. In this regard, a fundamental legal issue concerns the applicability of the Agreement…

“May” means “Shall” in Georgia! – this was the telephone message I received on January 18, 2018 from a colleague who had just been informed in the courtroom that the ICC arbitration clause he was relying upon was upheld by the Supreme Court of Georgia. I had been following this case [Supreme Court of Georgia…

The Supreme Court of the Russian Federation recently ruled that initiation of a second arbitration from the same contract violates the principle of legal certainty which forms part of the Russian ordre public (Ruling of the Supreme Court of Russian Federation dated 27.09.2017 docket number N 310-ЭС17-5655, А54-3603/2016). The reasoning of the decision is comparable to the…

The Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, 1958 (New York) celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2018 (“Convention”). Since its inception, 159 Contracting States have joined the Convention. The USSR ratified the Convention on 22 November 1960. The Russian Federation, as a successor of the USSR, continues to be a Contracting State….

In a marked departure from its usual closed-doors policy, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court (the “Supreme Court”) recently held public deliberations in two separate appeal proceedings concerning foreign investment arbitrations. In both cases, a public deliberation by all five judges of the first civil chamber was necessitated due to the lack of unanimity among the…

In February 2018, the Arbitrazh (Commercial) Court of the City of Moscow issued a ruling denying the recognition and enforcement of an ICC award issued in favor of Dredging and Maritime Management SA (Luxembourg) against JSC Inzhtransstroy (Russia), on grounds that included an alleged unenforceability of the ICC arbitration clause in the contract. The arbitration…

After the 2014 Russian annexation of Crimea, the new local “authorities” have taken a number of privately and state-owned assets in the peninsula.  Ukrainian companies have commenced at least eight investment arbitrations against the Russian Federation under the Russia-Ukraine BIT (the “BIT”), seeking compensation for the lost property in Crimea.  A number of tribunals have…

A unilateral option clause (“UOC”) can take many forms. It may grant its beneficiary the exclusive right to choose between litigation and arbitration when a dispute arises, or to choose to litigate before a specific jurisdiction, while constraining the non-beneficiary to a specific forum or a specific mode of dispute settlement. Consequently, UOCs are undoubtedly…

The Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (“New York Convention”) has its own scope – it states that it “shall apply to the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards”. Only decisions made by arbitrators are to be considered “awards” within the meaning of the New York Convention, rather than decisions handed…

This post navigates the possibility of expanding the protection of a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) to foreign investments made in the territory of a country, which is partially occupied by the State that is a Contracting Party to that BIT. By taking into account a real-life situation – which may result into an investment arbitration…

Over the last years, European arbitration institutions show the increasing number of arbitration cases involving Russian and other former Soviet Union countries, most of which are members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). Russian parties were second only to local Swedish companies appearing before the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC)….

In January 2017, the new Rules of the Maritime Arbitration Commission at the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry were adopted (“MAC Rules”). The Rules implement new regulations which comply with the latest tendencies in arbitration. MAC was established in 1930 in Soviet Russia and since then it administered about 4,500 disputes. In 2016 –…

One of the most significant changes that the new Russian Arbitration Law introduced, which has been in force for past eight months, relates to the requirement of Governmental authorization for establishing an arbitral institution (more discussion on this can be found in some of previous KAB posts available here, here, here). In particular, the Russian…

As of 1 February 2017 shareholders in a Russian company may refer their corporate law disputes to arbitration. Still, except for disputes from share purchase agreements or those involving securities registrars, having an arbitration clause in a company charter, a shareholders’ agreement (“SHA“), or elsewhere which submits corporate disputes to arbitration is not enough. A…

Arbitration has become a preferred method for the resolution of international commercial disputes in Russia, mostly thanks to the activities of the Moscow-based International Commercial Arbitration Court (“ICAC“, the Russian acronym “MKAS“) at the RF Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Established in 1932 as the Foreign Trade Arbitration Commission placed under the USSR National Chamber…

The question of the validity of an arbitration clause incorporated by reference is debatable in international arbitration. The approach of national courts to the issue varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction (e.g., see here). The Russian Law on International Arbitration (1993) is based on the UNCITRAL Model Law. In particular, the Law provides in Article 7…

Russia has recently revised its arbitration laws. The key development of the reform is to address the arbitrability of so-called “corporate disputes.” The new laws lift the longstanding ban on arbitrating most types of controversies relating to a Russian company. There is a catch, though: the lawmakers set out mandatory procedural conditions with which any…

1 September 2016 marks the key date in the long-awaited Russian arbitration law reform, publicly announced by the President of the Russian Federation already in 2013. Since then, the Russian arbitration law reform has been in the public eye attracting significant publicity (previous blog posts on this can be read: here, here, here, and here)….

The Russian Supreme Court recently rendered a decision declaring disputes on challenging agreements with banks in a special financial situation, called by lawyers – “troubled” banks, as non-arbitrable [Bank Trust v. Fosint Ltd., decision dated 16 August 2016 number 305-ЭС16-4051] (“Trust case”). In this case, a “troubled” bank, meaning a bank in which a temporary…

No other sport event has attracted as much attention recently as the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio (Rio 2016). Due to the international scale, high stakes involved, close emotional attachments as well as the increased publicity, Rio 2016 came under close scrutiny from all kinds of stakeholders. Just like in old times (remember boycotts of…

Arbitrability is a fundamental concept of arbitration law which gives an answer to a question which dispute can be submitted to arbitration. Traditionally in Russia the non-arbitrability of a dispute was explained through a public policy consideration. In other words, disputes which have or might have a public interest cannot be submitted to arbitration. The…

Not long time ago the Supreme Court of Canada upheld a refusal to grant an enforcement of an US$950,000 award, rendered on 6 September 2002 and issued in favor of the Russian oil company Yugraneft at the International Commercial Arbitration Court at the RF Chamber of Commerce and Industry (“ICAC”). The enforcement application was filed…

Wide interpretation of a non-arbitrability exception may frustrate the purpose of promoting international commercial arbitration. So far, Russian courts have not been able to formulate a clear cut and consistent rule on the arbitrability of disputes with a public element, in particular disputes arising from agreements concluded under public procurement schemes. Russian law as it…