There are two legal jurisdictions in Qatar with laws containing specific provisions related to arbitration: the State of Qatar and the Qatar Financial Center (the “QFC”). The latter is a separate jurisdiction with its own laws within the state. The QFC Law provides for the arbitration of commercial disputes in relation to contracts that have…

CIETAC’s Vice Chairman and Secretary General recently announced at a conference in London that CIETAC may soon permit parties to select arbitrators from outside the CIETAC list. As the CIETAC Rules currently allow parties to appoint off-list only if they have agreed to do so, this announcement suggests that CIETAC may in the future allow…

There was no shortage of coverage of the recent English Supreme Court case Jivraj v Hashwani, the case concerning whether an arbitration clause was contrary to anti-discrimination legislation applicable to employees. But there was one issue which received little attention before the Supreme Court – whether or not the nature of the relationship between the…

I write this post on a train on the way home from a seminar held by the Milan Chamber of Arbitration (CAM) to introduce a new rule and guidelines that could be seen as a necessary next step in the trend towards greater efficiency in arbitration. Before commenting on where these new developments might take…

Costa Rica has a new Arbitration Law, which is based on the 2006 version of the UNCITRAL Model Law. The relative speed with which the new Arbitration Law was adopted came as a surprise to many. Only a few months ago, at the Second International Arbitration Congress organized by the ICC Costa Rica in San…

In the current zeitgeist focusing on the need for efficiency and speed in arbitration, we are at risk of over-correcting to the point of diminishing important functions of the arbitral process. There is little doubt that the arbitral process generally has become too much like litigation, and needs to be more efficient and less costly….

The new Hong Kong Arbitration Ordinance (Cap. 609) (the “Ordinance”) comes into effect today, having been approved by the Hong Kong Legislative Council at the end of last year. The Ordinance represents the culmination of many years of discussion and consultation and marks a significant milestone in the development of Hong Kong as a world-class…

“…there are known knowns; these are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know” Former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. One of…

One of the key issues that now awaits the decision of the U.K. Supreme Court in Jivraj v. Hashwani is whether there is a contract between the parties and the arbitrators, such that the arbitrators may be considered “employees” of the parties (and thereby subject to the law prohibiting discrimination by employers)? If there is…

In a recent decision, the Swiss Supreme Court examined whether contractual provisions contemplating certain procedural steps before initiating arbitration proceedings impacted the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal (Case no. 4A_46/2011 of 16 May 2011, to be published in ASA Bulletin, 2011. English translation to be published in Swiss International Arbitration Law Reports, 2011). The contract,…

On 27 April 2011, the US Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision (AT&T Mobility LLC v Concepcion (563 US ____ (2011) 17)), concluded that due to the principle of finality, arbitration would be “poorly suited” to cases where the stakes are particularly high (class actions in the instant case). The US Supreme Court added: “[w]e…

Conferences on arbitration frequently include a session on “drafting” dispute resolution clauses for international contracts. The term drafting is also included in the title of many articles, book chapters, and entire books. While the actual content that follows this topic heading is often helpful, especially for non-specialist in-house counsel and transactions lawyers, the term itself…

Such a makeover will certainly not be achieved in sixty minutes. Sixty days will not nearly be enough. One would not, however, have to be too audacious to hope that India can reinvent itself as an arbitration-friendly part of the world in sixty months. From its early years as a newly independent, fledgling democracy, India…

January 28, 2011 – violent protests rocked Egypt; February 2, 2011 – political anxiety and ongoing unrest in Egypt threaten to shake other economies; February 11, 2011 – Mubarak resigned. March 22, 2011 – fire at Egypt interior ministry; April 17, 2011 – ex-ministers to be tried. Recently, a significant amount of unrest has occurred…

According to the rules governing domestic arbitration (Art 30 of the Concordat on Arbitration, and, as of 1 January 2011, Art. 378 of the Swiss Federal Code on Civil Procedure), a party that does not pay its share of the advance on the arbitration costs requested by the arbitral tribunal risks to lose the benefit…

It is interesting to see what can happen sometimes during an oral hearing for an arbitral proceeding. I have noted from my esteemed colleagues that they have witnessed a very interesting phenomenon – watch the arbitrators – can you tell who appointed whom? Should you be able to? Having worked for most of my career…

The aftermath of the Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy saw more than 20,000 retail investors in Hong Kong suffer losses from investments in structured products. This gave rise to political pressure on the Hong Kong Government to review its financial regulatory system and to step up its investor protection mechanisms. As one of the key outcomes of…

The 1981 French Arbitration Law did not contain a provision covering the form or the proof of an international arbitration agreement. The former Article 1499 of the Code of Civil Procedure (“CCP”) indirectly addressed the issue of form by stipulating, in the context of the recognition and enforcement of awards, that the existence of an…

Introduction: Many international commercial contracts (such as e.g., construction, distribution, sale and purchase) are governed by Swiss (substantive) law as per a choice of law provision. Often the choice of law is made in combination with an arbitration clause referring disputes to arbitration in Switzerland. The effect of international sanctions on commercial contracts has become…

Anyone considering Canada as the seat of an arbitration or as one among several jurisdictions where recognition and enforcement proceedings could be commenced should pay close attention to the Supreme Court of Canada’s March 18 decision in Seidel v. TELUS Communications Inc., 2011 SCC 15, which appears to mark a philosophical shift in Canadian arbitration…

Clear tendencies towards an arbitration-friendly approach have been demonstrated by the Swedish Supreme Court during the latter part of 2010. During this term the Supreme Court has repeatedly taken an arbitration-friendly stance and emphasized that Swedish arbitration law and practice ought to be in line with international best practice in arbitration. Sweden has a long-standing…

The new French arbitration law, published on 14 January 2011, further reinforces Paris’ position as a leading arbitration centre. The new law, which comes thirty years after the previous 1980 law regarding domestic arbitration and the 1981 law dealing with international arbitration, maintains the distinction between domestic and international arbitration. It clarifies and enhances an…

The goal had seemed an impossible one for many years. And then, recently, a tribunal in Berlin came close to breaking the famed barrier. Their noble effort was thwarted only by the Teutonic lapse of the chair who, on the verge of declaring the proceedings closed at 4 minutes and 43 seconds, spontaneously suggested terms…