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The talk will concentrate primarily on international commercial arbitration (which normally involves principles of different domestic laws as well as conflict of laws), but will also deal with the growing phenomenon of investment treaty arbitration (which is the most common type of Dispute Resolution process involving issues of public international law.
Dispute Resolution has traditionally been practised by way of litigation in domestic courts. In the last few decades, a new method of Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) has emerged and this talk is meant to give a bird’s eye view of the most important and popular method of ADR, namely international arbitration in the universe of cross-border disputes. Globalization has resulted a huge increase in international transactions where international arbitration is usually the preferred method of Dispute Resolution, particularly in countries where a foreign investor or businessman would be hesitant to have disputes with the local counterparty litigated in the local courts where he is unfamiliar with:-
- The laws and court system; and
- The language used in the local courts
International arbitration is therefore the means whereby the playing field is levelled, and both parties submit to the (virtually) unappealable decision of a tribunal of neutral and international members with the parties represented by their first choice of lawyers( instead of having to choose local lawyers for court cases), where the rules of procedure are those drafted by international institutions ( including the United Nations) and in a language with which both sides are familiar.