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Guide To Regional Arbitration (volume 4 - 2016)

Ones to Watch: Western Europe

03 November 2015

Paris, the Home of International Arbitration (the Paris Rules)

What is it?

A not-for-profit association of arbitration practitioners, established to promote Paris as a seat.

How has it made it into this guide?

In 2013 it published its own rules for use in ad hoc cases as an alternative to the UNCITRAL model, so, in effect, it has become a quasi-centre in its own right.

How are they different to the UNCITRAL rules?

For one thing, they’re shorter: 12 articles spread across 23 pages, which the association claims will suit experienced arbitrators capable of taking a common-sense approach.

Among other innovations, the rules allow parties to appoint an interim arbitrator ahead of the appointment of the tribunal. He or she is granted the same broad powers as the tribunal itself, including the ability to grant interim relief in response to joint or ex parte applications.

Who acts as appointing authority?

The secretary general of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague is designated as the appointing authority for emergency arbitrators, replacement arbitrators and sole arbitrators, and for cases where the parties have failed to appoint. The PCA is also responsible for deciding challenges to arbitrators and determining how to compensate the tribunal where the parties have failed to agree on this.

Does the association have a figurehead?

Charles Kaplan is the association’s president. The honorary presidents are Jean-Pierre Ancel, Yves Derains and Serge Lazareff.

Scottish Arbitration Centre

Why’s it one to watch?

It’s young, but keen and well connected.

Who is backing it?

There are some big names on board, with various ambassadorial and management roles. Former Scottish judge Lord Dervaird and Edinburgh-based arbitrator Hew Dundas were its honorary vice presidents in 2011. Now Sir David Edward QC holds that post.

It has also enfranchised the University of Dundee. The two organisations have teamed up to launch the International Centre for Energy Arbitration, which will offer a service tailored to energy businesses. That centre is now developing its first set of rules (it held its first event in Inverness in July 2014).

Does it have a staff?

The chairman is Brandon Malone, a solicitor advocate with a leading local firm, and the chief executive Andrew McKenzie (of the Scottish Government’s Justice Directorate).

They’ve travelled extensively on the arbitration circuit promoting it.

Does it have any noteworthy selling points?

One is Scotland as a seat. Not everybody realises it, but Scotland has its own laws, separate from the rest of the UK. That includes its own arbitration act.

How does the Scottish Arbitration Act compare with the English Arbitration Act?

Depending who you talk to, they’re like chalk and cheese. The writers of the Scottish Arbitration Act have suggested theirs is far superior, and includes all sorts of details that users are crying out for, such as more rigid rules on confidentiality and anonymity.

Are there any other selling points?

The centre’s website says that arbitrating in Scotland is 40 per cent of the cost of arbitrating in London or New York.