Arbitration practitioners have traditionally had very little illumination into the outcomes, let alone the reasoning, of arbitrator challenge decisions. Few arbitral institutions set out in writing to the parties the reasons for their challenge decisions, and even fewer institutions have made these decisions available to the larger arbitration community. Past posts on this blog have…

Occasional articles, postings, etc come out which discuss the lack of female representation in international arbitration. Perhaps possible reasons are suggested, perhaps only statistics given, but it is still clearly an issue. Beyond talking about it – how can we actually help the situation? In an article from June 2009, Michael Goldhaber noted that in…

In my last blog, I offered praise for the ICDR, ICC and ICSID, for taking a number of important steps over the last few years to control excessive time and costs in international arbitration. Those initiatives already have resulted in measurable reductions in the average duration of cases. But there is more that the leading…

I’m honored to join today the fine ranks of contributors to this blog. For my first two posts, I thought I would offer a progress report of sorts on the critical task of controlling time and costs in international arbitration. This Part 1 focuses on the good news about various institutional reforms by the ICDR,…

Some of the readers of this blog may have missed the Ninth Circuit’s recent decision in Cape Flattery Ltd. v. Titan Maritime LLC, 647 F.3d 914 (9th Cir. 2011)—in which the court addressed the critical question of how a court is to determine whether a dispute is “arbitrable” for purposes of a motion to compel—and…

Two things are currently unfolding in Africa: significant economic progress and profound political transformation. On the economic front, in the last decade, Africa has been one of the fastest growing continents in the world. Indeed, according to the International Monetary Fund, in the next five years, Africa is expected to be the fastest growing continent,…

Is the international litigation gaining strength over international arbitration? Is it true that in-house counsel would rather fight it out in the courts of the country versus dealing with arbitrators who take too long, expensive attorneys in the international arbitration arena and the threat that the country involved will find a way to not recognize…

In an emergency, swift and effective action is required. Yet in international arbitration proceedings, it can take weeks or months to constitute an arbitral tribunal. What options, then, are open to a party in need of urgent interim relief before an arbitral tribunal has been formed? In many circumstances, applying to the national courts of…

One purpose for anti-suit injunctions is to stop parallel proceedings, that is, to stop parties from pursuing litigation or arbitration involving the same parties and the same claims in two different jurisdictions simultaneously. To stop parallel proceedings in arbitration, a party will go to the court at the seat of the arbitration and will ask…

Even when I think I know what I’m doing (be it self-confidence or self-deception), I still find checklists can be useful. Sometimes they can help validate or compare processes with others, but mostly they are good at making sure I haven’t forgotten some critical step. Below is a checklist for when someone – a business…

At the time the General Assembly of the United Nations was deciding to include in the agenda of its fifty-sixth session the text of the Draft Articles on Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts (The Draft) adopted by the International Law Commission (ILC), the Argentine Republic was reaching the peak of the most devastating…

If it isn’t pleaded, you can’t consider it. That in a nutshell appears to be the holding established recently by the Singapore High Court in Kempinski Hotels SA v PT Prima International Development [2011] SGHC 171 (“Kempinski”). That case saw the setting aside of three related international arbitration awards on the basis that the tribunal…

A few years ago, stabilization clauses in investment contracts became the subject of increased attention by human rights and development groups. A report on Stabilization Clauses and Human Rights, issued by the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Business and Human Rights, John Ruggie, was the first comprehensive study to draw on a range of heretofore…

Third party funding probably has its longest history in Australia, followed by the United Kingdom. The irony is that both of these are common law jurisdictions in which the legal principles of maintenance and champerty exist. Indeed, they originated in the United Kingdom. What are maintenance and champerty exactly and do they exist today? More…

Confidentiality in arbitration arises through the agreement of the parties, by selecting arbitration rules with explicit provisions thereof, or under domestic statutory regulations. Few national laws regulate confidentiality in arbitration. This is because a large number of countries follow the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, whose drafters made it clear that “confidentiality may…

As Roger Alford mentioned previously, New York University Law School hosted a discussion of the Chevron-Ecuador dispute on October 24th. The event was subject to the Chatham House rules, so my notes below should not be attributed to any particular panelist or audience members. However, in the case of moderator Michael Goldhaber, his views have…

Challenges are opportunities in disguise. Despite the global economic slowdown which has significantly affected developed economies, Africa, particularly Sub-Saharan Africa, has apparently shown good signs of economic expansion. According to the International Monetary Fund World Economic Outlook of September 2011, the region’s economy is expected to expand by up to 5¾ per cent in 2012…

Third party funding is currently receiving a lot of attention in the international arbitration community. An ethical topic for sure, third party funding can provide the financing necessary for an international arbitration to move forward. This logically opens doors to those who may otherwise not be able to pursue the claim or assist those clients…

It gives me great pleasure to announce that the publishers of this blog and Kluwer Arbitration are hosting their first Webinar designed for corporate counsel on Wednesday 9th November (4pm Central European time/3pm UK time/10am Eastern Standard Time). The webinar is entitled Shell vs GE: The Employer-Contractor Debate. The Best Way to Resolve Conflicts and…

In its 4 August 2011 Decision on Jurisdiction and Admissibility, the majority of the Tribunal in Abaclat and Others (Case formerly known as Giovanna a Beccara and Others) v. Argentine Republic affirmed that it had jurisdiction to hear the claims of over 60,000 Italian investors against Argentina arising out of Argentina’s default on various sovereign…

As we approach the first anniversary of the UK Supreme Court’s landmark decision in the case of Dallah Estate and Tourism Holding Company v The Ministry of Religious Affairs, Government of Pakistan, it is only fitting that we would encounter a case which would cause us to revisit the issue of the proper standard of…

Recent reports of the freezing of Russian government funds at the Stockholm Arbitration Institute may be premature, but it still remains possible that a Swedish bailiff could move to seize such funds. At the time of this writing, a freezing request by German businessman Franz Sedelmayer remained under active review at a Swedish government debt…

In August 2011, the tribunal in Abaclat and others v Argentina decided (by a majority) that it had jurisdiction over claims brought by approximately 60,000 Italian investors, and that the claims were admissible. The Italian investors claim that Argentina has breached its obligations under the Argentina-Italy bilateral investment treaty (BIT) when it defaulted on and…