In July 2022, the African Arbitration Academy launched the Model Bilateral Investment Treaty for African States (‘Model BIT’) with the goal of it serving as a source of cohesion for African States’ Investor-State Dispute Settlement (‘ISDS’) reform strategy. They also expect the Model BIT will promote the codification of Investment Policies and Laws for African…

The results of two surveys on arbitration in Africa-related disputes were released in 2022. Both surveys drew responses from the continent’s diverse regions and legal systems. Respondents were given the choice to answer questions in either English, French, Arabic, or Portuguese. In April 2022, the African Arbitration Academy released its Survey on Costs and Disputes…

Almost 4 years ago, Kluwer Arbitration Blog published an article titled “The Fate of Finality Clause in Ethiopia” by Mintewab Afework, which clearly examined the parties’ prerogative to submit their disputes to arbitration and to waive their right of appeal on the final arbitral award, as applicable at the time. After 4 years, two significant…

This year, the arbitration team at SOAS consisting of Emilia Onyema, Steven Finizio and Baiju Vasani in cooperation with the African Legal Support Facility of the African Development Bank, organised and delivered four separate “counsel in arbitration skills-based training” workshops in collaboration with four arbitral centres in Africa: in Lagos (LACIAC), Douala (CMAG), Kigali (KIAC)…

The second edition of the World Arbitration Update was held from 26 to 30 September 2022. The panels dedicated to the African region were held on September 28, and one of the panels focused on ‘Legal Developments in Sub-Saharan Africa’. The panel discussions provided an overview of and updates on the practice of arbitration in…

The second day of the ICCA Congress took place on Tuesday, September 20. Delegates gathered in the morning for the presentation of the inaugural ICCA Guillermo Aguilar-Alvarez Memorial Prize, established in honour of former ICCA Governing Board Member Guillermo Aguilar-Alvarez. Professor Stefano Azzali said a few words on the life and career of Guillermo, fondly…

The increasing cost of resolving disputes has become very concerning. While this phenomenon is not altogether new, the rising trend in recent times has given rise to a situation in which impecunious claimholders may be deprived of access to justice. Indeed, even companies with deep pockets now seek innovative ways of managing the costs of…

The Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa, also known as the Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC),1)CEMAC is the French acronym for “Communauté Economique et Monétaire de l’Afrique Centrale” has recently enacted a Supplementary Act N° 01/21-CEMAC-CJ-CCE-15 establishing the Statute of the Arbitration Center of the Community Court of Justice (Supplementary Act No…

Ever since the Chinese government officially adopted it in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has evolved restlessly. Yet, ten years later, its exact delineations are still somewhat blurry: the global infrastructure project encapsulates all at once a vision, a strategy and a policy. One certainty, however, remains constant. The BRI is and will…

2021 was significant for Africa with respect to the African Continental Free Trade Area (‘AfCFTA’) and the Agreement establishing it. The aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic generated a global economic crisis at a very critical phase of the AfCFTA and resulted in a delay in its implementation. This post seeks to place into perspective the…

This post shares a development of potential significance, i.e., the drafting of the Sustainable Investment Facilitation & Cooperation Agreement (SIFCA), a next-generation model bilateral investment treaty (BIT) developed for The Gambia, a sovereign State in West Africa and one of the world’s least developed countries (LDCs). This post continues the discussion raised in January 2021,…

This post is in response to the post titled “The First Year of Tanzania’s 2020 Arbitration Act” published on the Kluwer Arbitration Blog on 21 April 2021. In the above-mentioned post, Katarina Jurisic and Michael Wietzorek analysed the provisions of Tanzania’s Arbitration Act 2020 (‘the Act’) and the effect that the Act would have on…

On 12 March 2021, Fangda Partners, ASAFO & CO and Delos Dispute Resolution hosted an interactive roundtable on “The Often-Overlooked Value of African Seats for African-Chinese Disputes”. The panelists for the roundtable discussion were Tunde Fagbohunlu SAN , Julia (Zhang) Le Roux, Michael Tam, Olga Boltenko and Peter Po Kwong Yuen, and it was moderated…

With the coming into force of the 2020 Arbitration Act, Tanzania certainly has the potential to become a go-to place for international arbitration, at least in Eastern Africa. In addition to its favourable geographical location, now the country also has modern arbitration legislation largely based on the well-established and often tested English model. Section 1…

Many will recall the historic ruling of Justice Neil Gorsuch in McGirt v. Oklahoma (2020), where the United States Supreme Court upheld an 1866 treaty between the United States and the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, which established the Muscogee Nation’s geographic borders. The Court decided that much of current Eastern Oklahoma is to remain Indian land…

Cases involving African parties contribute to a significant number of International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) cases. Indeed, 15% of ICSID cases involve parties from sub-Saharan Africa and 18% of ICSID cases involve parties from Middle East and North Africa. The UNCTAD database of Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) cases records 145…

As Phase II negotiations of the African Continental Free Trade Area (“AfCFTA”) have been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a draft legal text of the AfCFTA Investment Protocol (“Protocol”) has not been submitted to the January 2021 Session of the Assembly, as originally expected.  There are reasons to believe that with the recent start…

Ndanga Kamau is a Vice President of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Court of Arbitration and the President of the ICC Africa Commission. She is an international lawyer who specialises in international dispute settlement and international law. She sits as arbitrator and represents clients in international disputes. She also provides consultancy work and…

Since its creation, the Common Court of Justice and Arbitration (CCJA) has been at the forefront of promoting international arbitration in Africa, particularly with respect to creating a favourable setting for international and regional arbitration under the Uniform Act on Arbitration adopted by the seventeen OHADA Member States. This momentum continued with the recent adoption…

Welcome to the Kluwer Arbitration Blog, Mr. Ngugi!  We are grateful for this opportunity to learn more about the Nairobi Centre for International Arbitration – NCIA, the type of disputes it handles and the way it is facing recent developments, such as the COVID-19 crisis. Please give our readers a brief background of yourself and…

We initiate our traditional Year in review series of 2020 with a retrospective view of the reported developments in the Sub-Saharan Africa. In this post, we aim at giving you a quick look back to some of our most impactful publications in 2020 from this geographical area, with a focus on the commercial arbitration developments…

Many see the Pan-African Investment Code (PAIC), a model instrument adopted by the African Union (AU) in 2015, as the first step toward the ‘africanization’ of international investment law. While several national and regional instruments on foreign investments had been adopted by African States and Regional Economic Communities (RECs) prior to the PAIC, the latter’s…

Negotiations on the Investment Protocol of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) are set to start later this year. An AfCFTA Investment Protocol would provide significant opportunities for African countries. However, the negotiations will be complex, taking place amidst a backdrop of existing African international investment agreements (IIAs) already negotiated at the bilateral and…

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…