ICC Court Opens Case Management Office in Singapore

Alexis Mourre, president of the ICC Court, Han Kok Juan, deputy secretary of MinLaw, John Danilovich, secretary-general of ICC and Indranee Rajah SC, senior Minister of State of MinLaw and Ministry of Finance

The Singapore Ministry of Law (MinLaw) and the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) announced last week that the ICC Court will set up a case management office in Singapore—aimed at boosting arbitration and serving the dispute resolution needs of businesses around the world.

MinLaw and the ICC Court announced their collaboration at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)—a milestone agreement—in Singapore on June 28. Under the terms of the MOU, MinLaw and the ICC Court will also work together to develop and promote Singapore as a seat and venue for arbitration in Asia through advancing thought leadership, developing talent and arbitration services and undertaking joint marketing.

The MOU was signed by Han Kok Juan, deputy secretary of MinLaw and Alexis Mourre, president of the ICC Court, witnessed by Indranee Rajah SC, senior minister of State of MinLaw and Ministry of Finance and John Danilovich, secretary-general of ICC at the 3rd ICC Asia Conference held in Singapore last week.

The ICC Court, headquartered in Paris, is one of the world’s leading arbitral institutions. In 2016, it administered almost 1,000 arbitral cases from around the world. The Singapore office will be the Court’s fourth overseas case management office—after Hong Kong, New York and Brazil—giving it a peerless global footprint. The new Singapore office is expected to commence operations in the first quarter of 2018 at Maxwell Chambers. It will take up about 2,000 square feet in the new Maxwell Chambers Suites, a conserved heritage building, which will be an expansion of Maxwell Chambers when the refurbishment works are completed in 2019.

The ICC Court has welcomed the conclusion of the MOU, emphasizing that the new case management team will form part of a unique international arbitration hub in Asia. “With its two case management teams in Hong Kong and Singapore, as well as its representative office in Shanghai, the Court is now able to offer a unique international arbitration platform across the entire Asian continent,” said Mourre.

Early Bird Registration: ICC New York Conference on International Arbitration

The ICC International Court of Arbitration will be holding its 12th ICC New York Conference on International Arbitration on September 27 at NYU’s School of Law. This annual event offers a forward-looking, dynamic program for law practitioners and business professionals alike. The full agenda is available here.

USCIB members receive a discount on registration with code: USA-9728

Session highlights:

  • NAFTA on the table
  • A duty to protect and secure: safeguarding confidential information in a digital world
  • Analysis or Advocacy: the use of experts in international arbitration
  • Turning an award into $$$$: strategies for enforcement

If you want to stay up-to-date with all recent arbitration developments in North America, this will be the ideal opportunity to interact directly with leading arbitration practitioners and experts.

The ICC Institute of World Business Law will also be organizing an advanced training on Drafting Enforceable Awards the day before, on September 26. Click here to view the program and speakers.

Package deals are available for the Conference + Training.
Make sure you register while the early bird is still applicable! The deadline for the early bird rate is July 28.

ICC and USCIB Host Singapore Minister to Discuss Trade Disputes in Asia

Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Law and Finance Indranee Rajah SC gives remarks

The ICC International Court of Arbitration and USCIB’s Arbitration Committee co-hosted Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Law and Finance Indranee Rajah SC on May 22 in New York, attracting law professionals including arbitrators, counsel and academics. The keynote address was followed by a roundtable discussion of considerations when resolving disputes in Asia, such as when to litigate or arbitrate, the use of expedited procedure rules, investment treaty developments in the region and enforcement considerations in various jurisdictions.

“As economies in Asia continue to grow, dispute volume and complexity will rise,” said Minister Rajah in her remarks, which focused on Singapore as a place of arbitration.

Other panelists included Grant Hanessian, partner, Baker McKenzie, court member, ICC International Court of Arbitration and chair of the USCIB Arbitration Committee, Mevelyn Ong, associate, Sullivan & Cromwell and former deputy counsel, ICC International Court of Arbitration, Christopher K. Tahbaz, Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, Dan Tan, principal, Dan Tan Law and Edwin Tong, SC, partner, Allen & Gledhill LLP.

Upcoming Arbitration Events: Global YAF

International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Global Young Arbitrators Forum (YAF) Event:

ICC Young Arbitrators Forum (ICC YAF) is organizing its 6th Global Conference in New York City on June 9-10, 2017 with a welcome reception on June 8. The conference will be hosted by Columbia Law School. The event will host preeminent speakers from Latin America, North America, Europe, Middle East and North Africa and Asia.

Additional program details, registration and a detailed agenda are available here.

Upcoming ICC Young Arbitrators Events

The International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce is organizing two ICC Young Arbitrators Forum (YAF) events in New York and San Francisco. On May 1, ICC YAF is organizing an event on “Summary Adjudication in International Arbitration” in San Francisco which will feature a panel of young practitioners on the West Coast along with a presentation by the Counsel of the ICC’s North America case management team. You may register by contacting Melissa.bibbs@dlapiper.com.

The ICC YAF Global Conference will be held from June 9-10 in New York City at Columbia Law School with a welcome cocktail reception on June 8. The conference will feature keynote speeches, panel discussions, debates, and workshops on Third Party Funding and Damages, along with a special networking session called, “Friday Night Live”. This conference is aimed at young arbitration practitioners of approximately 40 years and under: counsel, arbitrators, corporate counsel or academics. This ICC YAF Global Conference is a unique opportunity for YAF members from all over the world to meet peers from all Chapters. Young practitioners from all continents will gather to exchange thoughts on international arbitration and share some fun together. For more information, please visit their website.

ICC YAF has also recently announced new regional representatives for its 2017-2019 mandate. Representing 40 countries and 53 cities, the elected representatives are tasked with promotion and development of the dynamic global network of young arbitration talent. USCIB would like to congratulate the following new representatives for the United States:

Andy Tuck, Alston & Bird, LLP, Atlanta

Seth Meyer, Kirkland & Ellis, LLP, Chicago

Silvia Marchili, King & Spalding, Houston

Marike Paulsson, University of Miami School of Law’s International Arbitration Institute, Miami

Floriane Lavaud, Debevoise & Plimpton, New York

Ignacio Zapiola, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, LLP, New York

Amy Endicott, Arnold Porter LLP, San Francisco

Chip Rosenberg, White & Case LLP, Washington DC

UN Environment Assembly Focuses on Role of Business

Kennedy at Nairobi UNEP Meetings
Kennedy representing the Business and Industry Major Group at UNEP meetings in Nairobi 

Norine Kennedy, USCIB’s expert on environment and climate change policy and one of two official business focal point representatives for the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), recently attended UN Environment Assembly (UNEA3) preparatory meetings in Nairobi (March 7-10). UNEA represents the world’s highest-level decision-making body on the environment with universal membership of all 193 UN Member States along with non-governmental organizations and the private sector. The meetings in Nairobi began discussions to develop a new framework of of pollution-related issues for potential decisions and pledges at UNEA3; a substantial element of this framework will be the role of business in causing, remediating and minimizing pollution. UNEA3 will take place from December 4-6 in Nairobi.

UNEA3’s theme will be, “Towards a Pollution Free Planet.”  In interventions during last week’s preliminary meetings, government and UNEP officials linked this broad topic with other policy concepts underpinning regulatory efforts, including the circular economy and sustainable consumption.   Several governments also emphasized connections with UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“At this early stage, most attention seems to be directed at plastics in the marine environment, whether in the form of micro-plastics and smaller debris,  or as plastic bottles and plastic bags, with the push coming from Nordic countries, the EU and some African countries,” observed Kennedy. “Other issues under the other pollution sub-headings could still be proposed.

Led by UNEP Executive Director, Erik Solheim, and echoed by numerous government representatives, UNEA3 preparations for UNEA3 are placing a strong focus on business and industry as a source of solutions, resources, and actions, yet much needs to be done to afford adequate time and attention to contributions that business has made to addressing environmental challenges.  “In spite of extensive partnership and engagement by business with UNEP over decades, discussions last week frequently seemed to assume that business and industry was not already engaged in environmental and sustainability management,” noted Kennedy.   In her intervention on behalf of Business and Industry, Kennedy reminded governments and UNEP of the business community’s ongoing commitment to environmental stewardship and role in advancing innovative technologies to further all elements of sustainability.

Questions remain about how UNEP will identify and invite important business entities to the table, with an emphasis on geographical and sectoral representation, rather than anecdotal examples and individual CEOs.  USCIB will continue to advocate for U.S. business involvement and representation, working with UNEP and the U.S. Administration.

ICC Institute Advanced Training on the Conduct of the Proceedings and Case Management

Registration is now open for the ICC Institute Advanced Training on the Conduct of the Proceedings and Case Management.

Location: San Francisco, CA

Description: This training is of an advanced level and will focus in depth on how the arbitrator should establish his or her authority over the parties throughout the proceedings, including hearings, and interact with his or her fellow-arbitrators. Attendees are supposed to already master the basics of ICC international commercial arbitration. The training will consist of presentations and interactive discussions using mock case scenarios designed to hone participants’ understanding of critical theoretical concepts while also emphasizing many practical aspects involved in conducting an international arbitration.

To register, please visit the registration website. Early Bird rate is available through March 31.

New ICC Arbitration Rules and Note

International Law And Human Rights ConceptThe International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Court of Arbitration recently adopted new ICC Arbitration Rules and Note, which was approved by the Bureau of the Court on February 22 and went into effect earlier this month. The Note consolidates previously existing notes into one cohesive guidance document.

“The Note is an important step towards the implementation of our new policies to foster the efficiency and the transparency of ICC arbitrations. The possibility for any party to seek the provision of reasons for a wide range of Court decisions is a landmark change as well as a message of accountability to our users,” said President of the Court Alexis Mourre.

The Note also introduces a wide range of additional services that are now available to the parties in ICC cases, such as the recommendation of administrative secretaries, services for the organization of the hearing, the organization of transparent proceedings or the use of sealed offers.

Additional information on the Note can be found here.

ICC and USCIB Hold Educational Events on Arbitration

Emmanuel Gaillard, visiting professor at Yale Law School and head of International Arbitration at Shearman & Sterling LLP
Emmanuel Gaillard, visiting professor at Yale Law School and head of International Arbitration at Shearman & Sterling LLP

The International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and USCIB’s Arbitration Committee organized two educational events in New York last month—the fifth annual Proskauer Lecture on International Arbitration on February 21 and the Eleventh Vis Moot Practice Session on February 24.

The Proskauer Lecture is organized jointly by ICC, USCIB, Proskauer, and Columbia University School of Law’s Center for International Commercial and Investment Arbitration Law. As in previous years, the lecture featured a globally-renowned expert delivering a lecture to the international dispute resolution community in New York. This year’s expert lecturer was Emmanuel Gaillard, visiting professor at Yale Law School and head of International Arbitration at Shearman & Sterling LLP who spoke on the topic: International comity, ‎lis pendens, res judicata: Do the principles of judicial practice apply to international arbitration? “Emmanuel Gaillard gave a tour de force lecture on comity that has gotten people talking about the issue and even thinking about it in a different manner,” noted Peter Sherwin, Partner at Proskauer. “Through presentations like his, the Proskauer Lecture has become a must-attend event for the international arbitration community in New York and beyond.” A summary of Gaillard’s lecture will appear in the next issue of the Global Arbitration Review (GAR).

A few days later, Dentons LLP hosted eight universities in the eleventh annual ICC/USCIB Vis Moot Practice Session. Participating law schools included the University of Bucharest, Brooklyn Law School, Cardozo, Fordham University, New York University, Pace Law School, Rutgers Law School and St. John’s University School of Law. The practice session serves as an invaluable opportunity for teams to hone their arguments in front of mock arbitrators prior to The Annual Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna (April 7-13) or Hong Kong (March 26 – April 2), during which times teams from around the globe will compete in a mock arbitration. John Hay, partner at Dentons LLP stated that “Events like this provide for all the participants a worthwhile learning experience where they see, firsthand, which presentation styles and techniques work, and which do not.”

Consistently growing since its inception eleven years ago, the Vis Moot Practice Session gathered nearly thirty arbitration practitioners who volunteered their time and expertise to serve as mock arbitrators and provide feedback to teams before the real competition commences in Vienna or Hong Kong. Speaking on the networking opportunities presented to law students and future arbitration practitioners, Soeun (Nikole) Lee, deputy director, head of ICC Young Arbitrators Forum North America Chapter, stated that “the VIS moot is the best introduction to international arbitration as a student.  It is intellectually challenging, fun, and a phenomenal opportunity to meet future colleagues and mentors.   ICC VIS moot practice session serves as a great “moot for the Moot”.  We were very impressed at the students’ level of preparation and quality of arguments.”

ICC Welcomes New Court Secretary General and Deputy Secretary General

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has recently announced the appointment of Alexander G. Fessas as secretary general of the ICC International Court of Arbitration (“ICC Court”) and director of ICC Dispute Resolution Services and Ana Serra e Moura as deputy secretary general of the ICC Court. They will succeed Andrea Carlevaris and José Ricardo Feris, respectively, who are returning to private practice at the end of May.

Fessas, a Cypriot national born in Athens, currently serves as managing counsel and is the third most senior member of the ICC Court’s Secretariat. He started his career with ICC working as deputy counsel in the Eastern European team in 2011. He was later promoted to counsel, first in charge of the North American team and later in charge of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East team. Before joining ICC, Fessas was an associate at Stelios Koussoulis & Partners, an Athens-based law firm until 2007, and a sole practitioner thereafter.

Moura, in turn, currently serves as counsel in charge of Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula. She joined ICC as deputy counsel of the same team in 2011. Moura is also the project manager of the opening of the ICC Court Secretariat’s office in Sao Paulo, which will be announced shortly. She is admitted to the Portuguese Bar. She obtained her law degree from the Universidade Católica Portuguesa in Lisbon and furthered her studies at the Instituto de Empresa Law School in Madrid. In addition to Portuguese, her native language, she speaks English, Spanish and French. Moura has ample experience in both commercial and investment arbitration, as well as commercial and corporate law.

For additional information on their appointments, please see this ICC Press Release.