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Policy News

Overview of the 50th UNCITRAL session

Tuesday 01 August 2017

The 50th UNCITRAL session was very informative and insightful. The three-day Congress was an opportunity to assess the work of UNCITRAL in the past 50 years and consider future topics that need to be included in its work in the near future.

There was a good balance between senior and young speakers, academics and practitioners from around the world. Problems still persist, however, in the area of including women on the panels. 

The progress of Working Group II is to be commended. The compromise on important issues means that the current project on a Model Law on International Commercial Conciliation (“Model Law on Conciliation” or “Model Law”) and a convention can be completed relatively quickly.

The topic the reform of ISDS resulted in a very heated and interesting debate. Almost all member states represented at the session made a statement setting their government’s position on the matter. It was interesting to see the dynamics between (EU, EU member states, USA, Latin America, Asian and Pacific region).

Opportunities for CIArb

The opportunities presented by the work of the Working Group/Session in this area are:

  • Continuing co-operation with UNCITRAL, including sending representatives to update UNCITRAL on current and future projects as well as engaging with UNCITRAL and other international organisations on various projects where appropriate
  • Sharing expertise and sending experts to specific Working Group(s)
  • Further promoting CIArb Arbitration Rules (based on UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules 2010) and International Arbitration Guidelines especially in the area of arbitration

Next steps for CIArb

  • Establishing an expert group chaired by Lord Goldsmith
  • Follow up with further information when it is available in relation to the Working Group and the dates in relation to the ISDS reform
  • Update PSC/other interested committees, CIArb members, etc of the UNCITRAL’s latest developments 


Further reading

Completed CIArb UNCITRAL Assessment and Evaluation Form