GAR Volume 10 - Issue 2

ICSID at 50

Interview with David W Rivkin • Signing of Mauritius Convention on Transparency • UK chastised over conduct to former colony


ICSID at 50 (let’s not take you for granted)

This year’s IBA International Arbitration Day in Washington, DC, marked 50 years of ICSID, created through the Washington (or ICSID) Convention of 1965. Alison Ross reports

ICSID at 50: Should ICSID have an appeal mechanism?

One of the key themes discussed at this year's IBA International Arbitration Day in Washington, DC, was whether ICSID’s annulment mechanism is in need of reform or whether it should give way to some form of appeal mechanism. Alison Ross reports.

ICSID at 50: ISDS debate goes Stateside

Shortly before the IBA International Arbitration Day in February, a prominent US senator and law professor attacked investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) in the Washington Post – providing plenty of fodder for discussion among delegates. Alison Ross reports.

The American president

David W Rivkin, president of the IBA for the next two years and the first American to hold the role in 25 years, tells Alison Ross his presidential plans as well as his thinking on ethics in international arbitration, the ISDS debate and how arbitration practitioners contribute to the rule of law

Global Briefing

Arbitrators, rejoice: the increasingly exorbitant cost of the English Commercial Court

Matthew Parish, the English founder and managing partner of Gentium Law Group in Geneva, considers a 576 per cent price hike in the cost of commencing a claim before the Commercial Court in London – arguing that the new fee, combined with other hidden costs of litigating in the UK capital, present a golden opportunity for arbitration.

NEW ZEALAND: Court confirms power to compel evidence in foreign arbitrations

Kim Francis, partner at Meredith Connell in Wellington, reports on a New Zealand High Court decision compelling a witness to give evidence in an LCIA arbitration seated in London.

RWANDA: Developing a centre from scratch

Thomas Kendra, counsel at Hogan Lovells in Paris, charts the development of the Kigali International Arbitration Centre, as it celebrates its first two years of operation and the registration of an impressive 24 cases, including four international ones.

The virtue of judicial restraint: two comments on Laos v Sanum

Todd Weiler, a Canadian investment arbitration specialist, and Tai-Heng Cheng, partner at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan in New York, argue that a Singaporean court was wrong to set aside a jurisdictional decision in an investment treaty case against Laos earlier this year.

TREATY ARBITRATION: What is an abuse of process?

Deborah Ruff and Trevor Tan, partner and associate at Norton Rose Fulbright in London, examine a recent ICSID award dismissing a US$41 billion claim against Peru over a tourism development close to the site of a historical battle.

TREATY COLUMN: A two-steppe process?

ICSID cases against Turkmenistan take contradictory views of the local litigation requirement in the Turkey-Turkmenistan bilateral investment treaty, say Matthew Weiniger QC and Elizabeth Kantor of Herbert Smith Freehills.

UNITED STATES: The rise of the emergency arbitrator

Luis Perez, co-chair of the Latin America and Caribbean practice at Akerman, and Francisco Rodriguez, partner in Miami, consider recent US case law on the enforceability of emergency arbitration awards.

Conference Reports

HOUSTON: Recent trends in international energy disputes

A conference jointly organised by the Institute for Transnational Arbitration and the Institute for Energy Law reviewed recent trends in international arbitration of energy disputes and the growing phenomenon of arbitrator challenges based on “issue conflicts”. Carlton Forbes of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in Washington, DC, reports

Out of the shadows

Russia’s challenge to the Yukos awards has made the appropriate use of arbitral secretaries the issue of the day. An event in London convened by six young arbitration groups shone a light on the role they do and should play. Khaled Moyeed of Clyde & Co in London reports.

Why international courts may be the way forward

The start of this year saw the launch of the Singapore International Commercial Court (SICC). Alec Emmerson, Sapna Jhangiani and John Lewis of Clyde & Co in Singapore and Dubai report on a subsequent signing of memoranda with the courts of the Dubai International Financial Centre and Singaporean Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon's insights into why international courts provide a good alternative to arbitration.

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