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Commercial Arbitration

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Finland

Nina Wilkman , Markus Kokko and Niki J Welling
Borenius Attorneys Ltd

    Infrastructure

  1. 1.The New York Convention
    Is your state a party to the New York Convention? Are there any noteworthy declarations or reservations?
  2. Yes. Finland has ratified the New York Convention without any declarations or reservations.

  3. 2.Other treaties
    Is your state a party to any other bilateral or multilateral treaties regarding the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards?
  4. Finland is a party to and has ratified the Washington Convention (ICSID).

  5. 3.National law
    Is there an arbitration act or equivalent and, if so, is it based on the UNCITRAL Model Law? Does it apply to all arbitral proceedings with their seat in your jurisdiction?
  6. Arbitration in Finland is governed by the Finnish Arbitration Act (967/1992; as amended). The Act was heavily influenced by the UNCITRAL Model Law of that time, but is not directly based on it. Only minor changes have been made since its enactment. It is nevertheless considered to correspond to contemporary attitudes and notions of best practices in international commercial arbitration. Major amendments to the act are therefore currently not contemplated. However, considering that Finland often follows the trend in the other Nordic countries and the fact that Sweden is currently amending its Arbitration Act, it is possible that some revision work will be initiated within the foreseeable future.

    The Arbitration Act is applicable on all arbitral proceedings held in Finland and does not separate domestic arbitrations from international ones as regards the arbitral proceedings. Foreign nationals are nevertheless expressis verbis allowed to serve as arbitrators. Institutional arbitration rules and the parties by way of an agreement may supplement or modify the statutes in the Arbitration Act to the extent a section in the act is not mandatory.

  7. 4.Arbitration bodies in your jurisdiction
    What arbitration bodies relevant to international arbitration are based within your jurisdiction? Do such bodies also act as appointing authorities?
  8. The Arbitration Institute of the Finland Chamber of Commerce (the Institute) is the most relevant body with regards to international arbitration. In June 2013, the Arbitration Institute launched new arbitration rules which meet the highest international standards and notions of best practices. The rules include inter alia provisions on multi-party arbitration and consolidation. The Institute also provides emergency and expedited arbitration (www.arbitration.fi).

    Under the Arbitration Rules the Institute may – unless otherwise agreed by the parties – appoint arbitrators and may also act as an appointing authority under the UNCITRAL Rules. It is worth noting that the new Arbitration Rules also prescribe that all nominations of an arbitrator made by the parties or party-nominated arbitrators are subject to confirmation by the Institute. The appointment of any arbitrator shall become effective only upon such confirmation.

  9. 5.Foreign institutions
    Can foreign arbitral providers operate in your jurisdiction?
  10. Yes. Foreign citizens may act as arbitrators and foreign institutions may provide their services in Finland taking into account that the Finnish Arbitration Act is applicable to all arbitral proceedings conducted in Finland.

  11. 6.Courts
    Is there a specialist arbitration court? Is the judiciary in your jurisdiction generally familiar with the law and practice of international arbitration?
  12. There is no specialist arbitration court. The judiciary is familiar with the law and practice of international arbitration, although cases rarely reach the Supreme Court. Usually, challenges to the validity of an arbitral award are decided on in written proceedings without an oral hearing. The judiciary has fairly arbitration friendly attitude and applies the in favorem pro validitate – principle.

    The District Court of Helsinki is particularly knowledgeable in issues relating to international arbitration and especially with regards to the challenging of an award. It is therefore advisable to seat the arbitration in Helsinki ie, the award would be regarded as having been issued in Helsinki and any application for setting an award aside or declared null and void shall be filed with the District Court of Helsinki.

    Agreement to arbitrate

  13. 7.Formalities
    What, if any, requirements must be met if an arbitration agreement is to be valid and enforceable under the law of your jurisdiction? Can an arbitration agreement cover future disputes?
  14. An arbitration agreement must be concluded in writing. It is considered to have been concluded in writing if it is a part of a document signed by the parties or if it can be found in the correspondence between the parties. If documents signed by the parties refer to another document where an arbitration agreement can be found, the arbitration agreement is considered valid.

    It can also be agreed that disputes, which in the future arise from a particular legal relationship specified in the arbitration agreement, are subject to arbitration.

  15. 8.Arbitrability
    Are any types of dispute non-arbitrable? If so, which?
  16. Disputes which concern matters that the parties may not reach an out-of-court-settlement on may not be arbitrated. Also, in rare cases arbitration may not be allowed under Finnish substantive law in certain types of disputes. It should also be noted that an arbitration agreement regarding a possible future dispute with a consumer is not valid. Basically all commercial disputes may, however, be arbitrated.

  17. 9.Third parties
    Can a third party be bound by an arbitration clause and, if so, in what circumstances? Can third parties participate in the arbitration process through joinder or a third-party notice?
  18. As a general rule, a third party is not bound by an arbitration clause, but there are some special circumstances under which this may occur. For example, an arbitration clause does bind a third party in cases of universal succession and in most cases of singular succession.

    Joinder is not regulated in the Arbitration Act, but there is no obstacle if all parties were to specifically agree to it. The arbitration rules of the Institute on the other hand contain provisions on joinders.

  19. 10.Consolidation
    Would an arbitral tribunal with its seat in your jurisdiction be able to consolidate separate arbitral proceedings under one or more contracts and, if so, in what circumstances?
  20. The Arbitration Act does not cover this issue. Similar to a joinder, consolidation of separate proceedings is subject to an agreement between all the parties.

    The arbitration rules of the Institute allow for consolidation in case (i) all parties agree to consolidate, or (ii) all claims in the arbitrations are made under the same arbitration agreement, or (iii) where the claims in the arbitrations are made under different arbitration agreements, the disputes in the arbitrations arise in connection with the same legal relationship and the arbitration agreements do not contain contradictory provisions that would render the consolidation impossible.

  21. 11.

    Groups of companies
    Is the 'group of companies doctrine' (or any other basis for piercing the corporate veil) recognised in your jurisdiction?

  22. The Supreme Court recently ruled on a case where it pierced the corporate veil of an Estonian company and considered its largest shareholder (with a majority and controlling stake), a Finnish limited liability company, jointly liable with its subsidiary.

    The Supreme Court emphasised the main rule eg, shareholders of a limited liability company are liable for the obligations of the company only to the extent they have invested capital in such company. However, piercing the corporate veil may, according to the Supreme Court, occur in exceptional situations where a group structure, intercompany relationships or controlling power by the shareholder have clearly been used in an artificial and reprehensible manner which has caused damage to the company’s creditors or where legally mandated obligations have been circumvented. Another interesting aspect of the ruling is that it seems that this ruling makes it possible to pierce the corporate veil even if the relevant company is not incorporated in Finland.

  23. 12.Separability
    Are arbitration clauses considered separable from the main contract?
  24. As a main rule, arbitration clauses are considered separable from the main contract. An arbitral tribunal may, for instance, rule on the validity of the main agreement without invalidating the arbitration agreement in the process.

  25. 13.Competence-competence
    Is the principle of competence-competence recognised in your jurisdiction? Can a party to an arbitration ask the courts to determine an issue relating to the tribunal’s jurisdiction and competence?
  26. Yes. An arbitral tribunal may rule on its own competence to adjudicate the dispute. However, a decision by the arbitral tribunal, either denying or accepting jurisdiction, is not final in the sense that it does not prevent a party from taking the matter to court and having the court finally determine the arbitral tribunal’s jurisdiction. A party can have the courts determine an issue relating to the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal (ie, the validity or applicability of the arbitration agreement) either: before, during or after the arbitral proceedings, but the arbitral tribunal is nevertheless free to continue to hear the case until the court has finally decided the matter. Also, continuing to participate in the arbitral proceedings without raising any objections while being aware that the arbitral tribunal lacks jurisdiction may be construed as a waiver of the right to later invoke the lack of jurisdiction. 

  27. 14.Drafting
    Are there particular issues to note when drafting an arbitration clause where your jurisdiction will be the seat of arbitration or the place where enforcement of an award will be sought?
  28. The Arbitration Act does not provide for party confidentiality. Only arbitrators are considered to be bound by a confidentiality obligation. This issue should therefore be taken into account beforehand. If the arbitration agreement does not provide for the number of arbitrators, three shall be appointed.

  29. 15.Institutional arbitration
    Is institutional international arbitration more or less common than ad hoc international arbitration? Are the UNCITRAL Rules commonly used in ad hoc international arbitrations in your jurisdiction?
  30. Ad hoc international arbitration proceedings are significantly less common than institutional arbitration proceedings. Although parties from time to time have agreed on the applicability of the UNCITRAL Rules, such agreements seem to be quite rare.

  31. 16.Multi-party agreements
    What, if any, are the particular points to note when drafting a multi-party arbitration agreement with your jurisdiction in mind? In relation to, for example, the appointment of arbitrators.
  32. The Arbitration Act does not include specific rules to be applied in multi-party arbitral proceedings. It is therefore recommended that issues relating to multi-party arbitration are agreed upon in the arbitration agreement (consolidation of cases, appointment of arbitrators etc).

    The arbitration rules of the Institute contain sections which may be applied in case a multi-party arbitration was to surface. It is therefore advisable to opt for the rules in case one is not experienced in drafting complicated arbitration agreements.

    Commencing the arbitration

  33. 17.Request for arbitration
    How are arbitral proceedings commenced in your jurisdiction? Are there any key provisions under the arbitration laws of your jurisdiction relating to limitation periods of which the parties should be aware?
  34. Arbitral proceedings are commenced by providing the opposing party with a notice of arbitration. The notice shall be made in writing and include the issue which the arbitrators are meant to rule on and a reference to the arbitration agreement. The notice shall also include information on the arbitrator that the requesting party intends to nominate and a request that the opposing party nominates the arbitrator he is supposed to nominate. There are no arbitration-specific time limitations concerning the commencement of the arbitral proceedings, except that if interim measures have already been ordered by a general court of law, the arbitral proceedings must be commenced within one month from when the interim measures were ordered to prevent them from being cancelled (derived from the Code of Judicial Procedure). 

    Choice of law

  35. 18.Choice of law
    How is the substantive law of the dispute determined? Where the substantive law is unclear, how will a tribunal determine what it should be?
  36. The Arbitration Act does not include specific provisions relating to the choice of substantive law. If the parties have not agreed on the applicable lex causae, the arbitral tribunal will rule on the issue. The issue will most likely be determined on the basis of the conflict of law rules that the arbitrators find applicable (in many cases, the Finnish conflict of law principles and statutes). 

    Appointing the tribunal

  37. 19.Choice of arbitrators
    Does the law of your jurisdiction place any limitations in respect of a party’s choice of arbitrator?
  38. An arbitrator must have legal capacity and cannot be bankrupt. An arbitrator must also be impartial and independent of the parties.

  39. 20.Foreign arbitrators
    Can non-nationals act as arbitrators where the seat is in your jurisdiction or hearings are held there? Is this subject to any immigration or other requirements?
  40. Non-nationals may act as arbitrators. General VISA rules may apply depending on nationality.

  41. 21.Default appointment of arbitrators
    How are arbitrators appointed where no nomination is made by a party or parties or the selection mechanism fails for any reason? Do the courts have any role to play?
  42. A party may request that the court appoint an arbitrator if the opposing party has failed to nominate an arbitrator or if the parties have not been able to reach an agreement on a sole arbitrator. The court may also dismiss an arbitrator if he or she does not tend to his or her duties or delays the proceedings without justifiable cause.

  43. 22.Immunity
    Are arbitrators afforded immunity from suit under the law of your jurisdiction and, if so, in what terms?
  44. No. Arbitrators are not afforded immunity in any way and they may for instance be called to testify in courts.

  45. 23.Securing payment of fees
    Can arbitrators secure payment of their fees in your jurisdiction? Are there fundholding services provided by relevant institutions?
  46. The arbitral tribunal may, on the basis of the Arbitration Act, demand an advance or security for their fees and costs. Major arbitration institutions provide fundholding services and in ad hoc arbitrations, the security or the advance is in practice deposited with the arbitrators should they present a claim for it.

    Challenges to arbitrators

  47. 24.Grounds of challenge
    On what grounds may a party challenge an arbitrator? How are challenges dealt with in the courts or (as applicable) the main arbitration institutions in your jurisdiction? Will the IBA Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration generally be taken into account?
  48. An arbitrator must be impartial and independent. If there are justifiable grounds to suspect that the arbitrator lacks these requirements, the arbitrator may be challenged. A motion to disqualify must be presented within 15 days from the time when the arbitrator was appointed and the party found out about the circumstance leading to the suspicion. The arbitrators shall rule on the motion and IBA Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration may guide the arbitrators in their deliberation. A court may examine the claim only in connection with a claim for the setting aside of the arbitral award. 

    Interim relief

  49. 25.

    Types of relief
    What main types of interim relief are available in respect of international arbitration and from whom (the tribunal or the courts)? Are anti-suit injunctions available where proceedings are brought elsewhere in breach of an arbitration agreement?

  50. The Arbitration Act is silent on the powers of arbitrators to order interim measures. The tribunal can be granted this power in the arbitration agreement or institutional rules, but the orders of the arbitral tribunal are, however, not enforceable. An enforceable interim measure must be sought from the courts. Interim relief may take the form of orders regarding security for the claim, seizure of property and orders to undertake or refrain from undertaking certain actions and may temporarily be granted ex parte. The arbitration rules of the Institute contain provisions on interim measures. Such orders are binding upon the parties, but they lack enforceability under the Finnish official enforcement system and they do not preclude a party to take recourse to the state courts before the case file has been transmitted to the arbitral tribunal or in appropriate circumstances even subsequently.

    Anti-suit injunctions are not recognised as a legal concept, although such an order may in theory be issued.

  51. 26.Security for costs
    Does the law of your jurisdiction allow a court or tribunal to order a party to provide security for costs?
  52. The arbitral tribunal may, on the basis of the Arbitration Act, demand an advance or security for their fees and costs. In practice the security or the advance is deposited with the arbitrators should they request it.

    Procedure

  53. 27.

    Procedural rules
    Are there any mandatory rules in your jurisdiction that govern the conduct of the arbitration (eg, general duties of the tribunal and/or the parties)?

  54. The arbitral tribunal has a general duty to conduct the proceedings in an impartial and expedient manner. The rules governing the proceedings may be agreed upon by the parties. In the absence of an agreement between the parties, the arbitral tribunal will decide on the conduct of the proceedings. The parties must always be provided sufficient opportunity to present their cases. The parties may not grant arbitrators powers regarding issues that have been exclusively reserved for the courts (eg, enforcement of document production, witness examination under oath, enforcement of interim measures, etc).

  55. 28.Refusal to participate
    What is the applicable law (and prevailing practice) where a respondent fails to participate in an arbitration?
  56. The Arbitration Act does not expressis verbis obligate a party to participate in the arbitral proceedings. However, the arbitration may be commenced and carried out despite of a passive party. The courts may appoint arbitrators and the arbitrators may rule on the issues based on the material that has been presented.

  57. 29.Admissible evidence
    What types of evidence are usually admitted, and how is evidence usually taken? Will the IBA Rules on the Taking of Evidence in International Commercial Arbitration generally be taken into account?
  58. The Arbitration Act does not restrict the types of evidence a party can submit to support its case. A party may therefore rely on, for example, documents, written and oral witness testimony, expert witnesses and other material it may find relevant and supportive. Written witness statements are often used, but witnesses are usually still requested to appear in person in the hearing. The arbitrators may refuse to admit evidence if it is clearly irrelevant. The IBA Rules on the Taking of Evidence in International Commercial Arbitration are commonly used as guidelines.

  59. 30.Court assistance
    Will the courts in your jurisdiction play any role in the obtaining of evidence?
  60. Arbitrators cannot enforce orders to produce evidence (except by way of drawing adverse inferences). If the arbitral tribunal deems it necessary, a party may petition a court to compel a party or a third party to produce evidence by way of compelling witnesses to appear in court for examination or by ordering, for example, the production of documents. The court will mutatis mutandis apply the Finnish Code on Judicial Procedure.

  61. 31.Document production
    What is the relevant law and prevailing practice relating to document production in international arbitration in your jurisdiction?
  62. Legal tradition in Finland does favour the civil law limited approach to the production of documents. However, the IBA Rules on the Taking of Evidence are commonly considered to provide good guidelines for document production issues. Arbitrators may rely on the possibility of drawing adverse inferences if a party refuses to comply.

    If assistance in enforcement is sought from the court, the court will apply the Finnish Code of Procedure, in which case the production of documents will be limited in comparison to the Anglo-American approach.

  63. 32.Hearings
    Is it mandatory to have a final hearing on the merits?
  64. It is not mandatory. Arbitrators will nevertheless in practice hear the parties if one of them requests it.

  65. 33.Seat or place of arbitration
    If your jurisdiction is selected as the seat of arbitration, may hearings and procedural meetings be conducted elsewhere?
  66. Yes, hearings and meetings may be conducted elsewhere.

    Award

  67. 34.Majority decisions
    Can the tribunal decide by majority?
  68. Yes. The award must be signed by the arbitrators. If a minority refuses to sign the award, an explanation must be provided.

  69. 35.Limitations to awards and relief
    Are there any particular types of remedies or relief that an arbitral tribunal may not grant?
  70. The remedies and relief that can be granted by the arbitral tribunal are identical to that which is available to the court in a similar type of case, keeping in mind what is said above with regards to interim relief.

  71. 36.Dissenting arbitrators
    Are dissenting opinions permitted under the law of your jurisdiction? If so, are they common in practice?
  72. The Arbitration Act does not cover this issue expressis verbis. However, dissenting opinions are considered permitted and the possibility of adding a dissenting opinion has been utilised from time to time.

  73. 37.Formalities
    What, if any, are the legal and formal requirements for a valid and enforceable award?
  74. The award shall be based on the law. If the parties have agreed on the applicable lex causae, the award shall be based on that law. Furthermore, if the parties have agreed thereto, the arbitrators may apply the ex aequo et bono principle. The award shall be made in writing and be signed by the arbitrators. If one (or a minority) of the arbitrators has not signed it, an explanation should be added stating why this is. The award shall also be dated and the place where the arbitration has been conducted shall be included.

  75. 38.Time frames
    What time limits, if any, should parties be aware of in respect of an award? In particular, do any time limits govern the interpretation and correction of an award?
  76. The Arbitration Act does not stipulate a mandatory time limit within which an award must be given. It only states that the arbitration shall be conducted in an expedient fashion.

    A party may request the arbitral tribunal to correct a clerical error (typographical, computational or similar mistake) within 30 days from the date at which the party received a copy of the award. Before requesting a correction the party shall inform the other party of the request. The arbitrators may also on their own initiative correct such clerical error within 30 days from the date the arbitral award was issues. Before making such correction, they shall, if needed, give the parties an opportunity to be heard.

    A party may additionally request the arbitral tribunal to supplement the award by giving an additional award regarding an issue the arbitration tribunal has neglected to rule on. Before requesting an additional ruling the party shall inform the other party of the request. 

    Costs and interest

  77. 39.

    Costs
    Are parties able to recover fees paid and costs incurred? Does the 'loser pays' rule generally apply in your jurisdiction?

  78. Yes. The parties are jointly responsible for covering the costs of the arbitral tribunal. The arbitral tribunal may rule on the legal costs of the parties unless otherwise agreed by the parties, in which case the Finnish Procedural Code applies on the cost allocation. The starting point is that the “loser pays”.

  79. 40.Interest on the award
    Can interest be included on the principal claim and costs? Is there any mandatory or customary rate?
  80. Yes. The Finnish Interest Act provides for default interest in the absence of an agreement between the parties. It is also applied to legal fees and costs if a party has stated a claim demanding interest.

    Challenging awards

  81. 41.Grounds for appeal
    Are there any grounds on which an award may be appealed before the courts of your jurisdiction?
  82. An arbitral award may be set aside or declared null and void. An award shall be null and void if:

    • the tribunal has ruled on an issue which according to Finnish law cannot be arbitrated;
    • the award is in contradiction with the foundations of Finnish law;
    • the award is so ambiguous or incomplete that one cannot make out the contents of the award; or
    • the awards has not been signed by the arbitrators (majority and an explanation for why the minority has not signed it).

    An award may be set aside if:

    A party does not have the right to request setting aside according to the points (1) to (3) if it is considered that, by taking part in the proceedings without stating his objection or otherwise, the party has waived his right to rely on a ground referred to in the said points. The claim for setting aside must be made within 3 months from the time at which the party has been provided with a copy of the award.

    In addition a party may within 60 days from the time it was provided a copy of the award request a court to change the amount of fees payable to the arbitrators.

    1. the arbitrators have superseded their competence;
    2. an arbitrator has not been nominated in the proper order;
    3. if an arbitrator is considered to have a conflict of interest but the tribunal has rejected the challenge of a party or if a party has found out about the circumstance constituting a conflict of interest after the award was given; or
    4. the arbitrators have not reserved a party the opportunity to present its case.
  83. 42.Other grounds for challenge
    Are there any other bases on which an award may be challenged, and if so what?
  84. See question 41.

  85. 43.Modifying an award
    Is it open to the parties to exclude by agreement any right of appeal or other recourse that the law of your jurisdiction may provide?
  86. No. Such agreement would not be valid and would not prevent a party from seeking recourse in courts.

    Enforcement in your jurisdiction

  87. 44.Enforcement of set-aside awards
    Will an award that has been set aside by the courts in the seat of arbitration be enforced in your jurisdiction?
  88. According to article V (e) of the New York Convention, a court may refuse to enforce an award which has been set aside in the seat of arbitration. The guiding principle is that an award that has been set aside shall not be enforced.

  89. 45.Trends
    What trends, if any, are suggested by recent enforcement decisions? What is the prevailing approach of the courts in this regard?
  90. The prevailing approach almost without exceptions favours validity. There are no trends at present, which would lead one to believe that there would be a shift in this approach.

  91. 46.State immunity
    To what extent might a state or state entity successfully raise a defence of state or sovereign immunity at the enforcement stage?
  92. There are no provisions which would, as such, support sovereign immunity. If a foreign state has validly executed an arbitration agreement, the resulting award will be treated the same as other awards regardless of the parties involved.

    Further considerations

  93. 47.Confidentiality
    To what extent are arbitral proceedings in your jurisdiction confidential?
  94. Arbitrators have a confidentiality obligation. The parties are, however, not bound by this. It is therefore recommended that a confidentiality agreement is signed if confidentiality has not been agreed in the arbitration agreement. When enforcing an award, the courts will not consider the award confidential unless a party can show that it includes trade and business secrets or other information protected by law.

  95. 48.Evidence and pleadings
    What is the position relating to evidence produced and pleadings filed in the arbitration? Are these confidential? Is there any way that they might be relied on in other proceedings (whether arbitral or court proceedings)?
  96. As a starting point, the parties are not bound by confidentiality with regards to the arbitral proceedings. Only arbitrators have an obligation of confidentiality. It is therefore recommended that the issue is settled by way of agreement before the proceedings are commenced, and even such agreement would not prevent the courts from accepting the evidence.

  97. 49.Ethical codes
    What ethical codes and other professional standards, if any, apply to counsel and arbitrators conducting proceedings in your jurisdiction?
  98. Attorneys at law are bound by the ethical code of the Finnish Bar Association. However, as there is no statute requiring the counsels or arbitrators to be certified attorneys, the ethical code does not necessarily apply to them. In practice, most lawyers practicing as counsel in the field of international commercial arbitration are members of the Finnish Bar Association.

  99. 50.Procedural expectations
    Are there any particular procedural expectations or assumptions of which counsel or arbitrators participating in an international arbitration with its seat in your jurisdiction should be aware?
  100. Finland is in this connection to be considered as a civil law country and civil law philosophy is close at hand for instance in rulings regarding the production of documents. However, the IBA Rules on the Taking of Evidence and Conflict of Interest are recognised sources of arbitration law and are likely to be applied when asserted if the arbitration has international elements to it.

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Questions

    Infrastructure

  1. 1.The New York Convention
    Is your state a party to the New York Convention? Are there any noteworthy declarations or reservations?
  2. 2.Other treaties
    Is your state a party to any other bilateral or multilateral treaties regarding the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards?
  3. 3.National law
    Is there an arbitration act or equivalent and, if so, is it based on the UNCITRAL Model Law? Does it apply to all arbitral proceedings with their seat in your jurisdiction?
  4. 4.Arbitration bodies in your jurisdiction
    What arbitration bodies relevant to international arbitration are based within your jurisdiction? Do such bodies also act as appointing authorities?
  5. 5.Foreign institutions
    Can foreign arbitral providers operate in your jurisdiction?
  6. 6.Courts
    Is there a specialist arbitration court? Is the judiciary in your jurisdiction generally familiar with the law and practice of international arbitration?
  7. Agreement to arbitrate

  8. 7.Formalities
    What, if any, requirements must be met if an arbitration agreement is to be valid and enforceable under the law of your jurisdiction? Can an arbitration agreement cover future disputes?
  9. 8.Arbitrability
    Are any types of dispute non-arbitrable? If so, which?
  10. 9.Third parties
    Can a third party be bound by an arbitration clause and, if so, in what circumstances? Can third parties participate in the arbitration process through joinder or a third-party notice?
  11. 10.Consolidation
    Would an arbitral tribunal with its seat in your jurisdiction be able to consolidate separate arbitral proceedings under one or more contracts and, if so, in what circumstances?
  12. 11.

    Groups of companies
    Is the 'group of companies doctrine' (or any other basis for piercing the corporate veil) recognised in your jurisdiction?


  13. 12.Separability
    Are arbitration clauses considered separable from the main contract?
  14. 13.Competence-competence
    Is the principle of competence-competence recognised in your jurisdiction? Can a party to an arbitration ask the courts to determine an issue relating to the tribunal’s jurisdiction and competence?
  15. 14.Drafting
    Are there particular issues to note when drafting an arbitration clause where your jurisdiction will be the seat of arbitration or the place where enforcement of an award will be sought?
  16. 15.Institutional arbitration
    Is institutional international arbitration more or less common than ad hoc international arbitration? Are the UNCITRAL Rules commonly used in ad hoc international arbitrations in your jurisdiction?
  17. 16.Multi-party agreements
    What, if any, are the particular points to note when drafting a multi-party arbitration agreement with your jurisdiction in mind? In relation to, for example, the appointment of arbitrators.
  18. Commencing the arbitration

  19. 17.Request for arbitration
    How are arbitral proceedings commenced in your jurisdiction? Are there any key provisions under the arbitration laws of your jurisdiction relating to limitation periods of which the parties should be aware?
  20. Choice of law

  21. 18.Choice of law
    How is the substantive law of the dispute determined? Where the substantive law is unclear, how will a tribunal determine what it should be?
  22. Appointing the tribunal

  23. 19.Choice of arbitrators
    Does the law of your jurisdiction place any limitations in respect of a party’s choice of arbitrator?
  24. 20.Foreign arbitrators
    Can non-nationals act as arbitrators where the seat is in your jurisdiction or hearings are held there? Is this subject to any immigration or other requirements?
  25. 21.Default appointment of arbitrators
    How are arbitrators appointed where no nomination is made by a party or parties or the selection mechanism fails for any reason? Do the courts have any role to play?
  26. 22.Immunity
    Are arbitrators afforded immunity from suit under the law of your jurisdiction and, if so, in what terms?
  27. 23.Securing payment of fees
    Can arbitrators secure payment of their fees in your jurisdiction? Are there fundholding services provided by relevant institutions?
  28. Challenges to arbitrators

  29. 24.Grounds of challenge
    On what grounds may a party challenge an arbitrator? How are challenges dealt with in the courts or (as applicable) the main arbitration institutions in your jurisdiction? Will the IBA Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration generally be taken into account?
  30. Interim relief

  31. 25.

    Types of relief
    What main types of interim relief are available in respect of international arbitration and from whom (the tribunal or the courts)? Are anti-suit injunctions available where proceedings are brought elsewhere in breach of an arbitration agreement?


  32. 26.Security for costs
    Does the law of your jurisdiction allow a court or tribunal to order a party to provide security for costs?
  33. Procedure

  34. 27.

    Procedural rules
    Are there any mandatory rules in your jurisdiction that govern the conduct of the arbitration (eg, general duties of the tribunal and/or the parties)?


  35. 28.Refusal to participate
    What is the applicable law (and prevailing practice) where a respondent fails to participate in an arbitration?
  36. 29.Admissible evidence
    What types of evidence are usually admitted, and how is evidence usually taken? Will the IBA Rules on the Taking of Evidence in International Commercial Arbitration generally be taken into account?
  37. 30.Court assistance
    Will the courts in your jurisdiction play any role in the obtaining of evidence?
  38. 31.Document production
    What is the relevant law and prevailing practice relating to document production in international arbitration in your jurisdiction?
  39. 32.Hearings
    Is it mandatory to have a final hearing on the merits?
  40. 33.Seat or place of arbitration
    If your jurisdiction is selected as the seat of arbitration, may hearings and procedural meetings be conducted elsewhere?
  41. Award

  42. 34.Majority decisions
    Can the tribunal decide by majority?
  43. 35.Limitations to awards and relief
    Are there any particular types of remedies or relief that an arbitral tribunal may not grant?
  44. 36.Dissenting arbitrators
    Are dissenting opinions permitted under the law of your jurisdiction? If so, are they common in practice?
  45. 37.Formalities
    What, if any, are the legal and formal requirements for a valid and enforceable award?
  46. 38.Time frames
    What time limits, if any, should parties be aware of in respect of an award? In particular, do any time limits govern the interpretation and correction of an award?
  47. Costs and interest

  48. 39.

    Costs
    Are parties able to recover fees paid and costs incurred? Does the 'loser pays' rule generally apply in your jurisdiction?


  49. 40.Interest on the award
    Can interest be included on the principal claim and costs? Is there any mandatory or customary rate?
  50. Challenging awards

  51. 41.Grounds for appeal
    Are there any grounds on which an award may be appealed before the courts of your jurisdiction?
  52. 42.Other grounds for challenge
    Are there any other bases on which an award may be challenged, and if so what?
  53. 43.Modifying an award
    Is it open to the parties to exclude by agreement any right of appeal or other recourse that the law of your jurisdiction may provide?
  54. Enforcement in your jurisdiction

  55. 44.Enforcement of set-aside awards
    Will an award that has been set aside by the courts in the seat of arbitration be enforced in your jurisdiction?
  56. 45.Trends
    What trends, if any, are suggested by recent enforcement decisions? What is the prevailing approach of the courts in this regard?
  57. 46.State immunity
    To what extent might a state or state entity successfully raise a defence of state or sovereign immunity at the enforcement stage?
  58. Further considerations

  59. 47.Confidentiality
    To what extent are arbitral proceedings in your jurisdiction confidential?
  60. 48.Evidence and pleadings
    What is the position relating to evidence produced and pleadings filed in the arbitration? Are these confidential? Is there any way that they might be relied on in other proceedings (whether arbitral or court proceedings)?
  61. 49.Ethical codes
    What ethical codes and other professional standards, if any, apply to counsel and arbitrators conducting proceedings in your jurisdiction?
  62. 50.Procedural expectations
    Are there any particular procedural expectations or assumptions of which counsel or arbitrators participating in an international arbitration with its seat in your jurisdiction should be aware?