The International Arbitration Review 2013

10 July 2013

Corrs Chambers Westgarth has contributed to the fourth edition of The International Arbitration Review (Law Business Research Ltd, 2013), which is an annual guide to international commercial and investment arbitration in the most significant jurisdictions worldwide and to the principal international arbitration institutions.

The chapter on developments in Australia is authored by partner James Whittaker, counsel Colin Lockhart, and lawyer Jin Ooi of the Litigation practice group and is available here.

In the words of the editor: “International arbitration is a fast-moving express train, with new awards and court decisions of significance somewhere in the world rushing past every week.  Legislatures, too, constantly tinker with or entirely revamp arbitration statutes in one jurisdiction or another.  The international arbitration community has created a number of electronic and other publications that follow these developments regularly, requiring many more lawyer hours of reading than was the case a few years ago.  Scholarly arbitration literature follows behind, at a more leisurely pace.  However, there is a niche to be filled for analytical review of what has occurred in each of the important arbitration jurisdictions during the past year, capturing recent developments but putting them in the context of the jurisdiction’s legal arbitration structure and selecting the most important matters for comment.  This volume, to which leading arbitration practitioners around the world have made valuable contributions, seeks to fill that space.”

In their chapter, James, Colin and Jin consider recent developments in the Australian international commercial arbitration landscape and in particular the judicial treatment of the 2010 amendments to the International Arbitration Act 1974, including decisions concerning enforcement of non-foreign awards, the temporal operation of section 21 of the Act and the narrow scope for resisting enforcement of awards.  The chapter also touches on important investor–state dispute developments concerning Australia, in particular, the tobacco plain packaging international investment arbitration under the Australia–Hong Kong bilateral investment treaty and similar disputes brought before the World Trade Organization.

They concluded that the reforms to the international arbitration laws in Australia were purposefully aimed at bolstering Australia’s reputation as a first-rate, arbitration-friendly jurisdiction and as a desirable situs of international commercial arbitrations, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region and noted that while it is too early to tell whether the legislative amendments truly meet the objectives that they have set out to achieve, the international arbitration community in Australia remains fairly positive that change is on the horizon.

For further information on how Corrs Chambers Westgarth can assist you in an international arbitration matter, please contact James Whittaker, Colin Lockhart or Jin Ooi, or any of our experts in international arbitration, Spencer Flay, Michael Kimmins, Robert Regan, Chris Ryder and Stephen Stern.

The content of this publication is for reference purposes only. It is current at the date of publication. This content does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Legal advice about your specific circumstances should always be obtained before taking any action based on this publication.

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Chris Ryder

Partner. Perth
+61 8 9460 1606


James Whittaker

Partner. Sydney
+61 2 9210 6667


Michael Kimmins

Partner. Brisbane
+61 7 3228 9377


Spencer Flay

Partner. Perth
+61 8 9460 1738


Stephen Stern

Partner. Melbourne
+61 3 9672 3148


Colin Lockhart

Counsel. Perth
+61 8 9460 1713