Essam Al Tamimi, Robert Karrar-LewsleyFrom: Choice of Venue in International Arbitration
Edited By: Michael Ostrove, Claudia Salomon, Bette Shifman
The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is an English-language, common law jurisdiction in the heart of Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). It has its own civil and commercial laws distinct from the rest of the UAE, and an English-style common law court system. The DIFC adheres to the New York Convention and has a modern arbitration law based on the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law. It also hosts an international arbitration center, the DIFC-LCIA. This chapter begins with an overview of the DIFC and its legal system. It then reviews its arbitration law and the practical considerations that need to be taken into account when choosing the DIFC as an arbitral seat. It argues that DIFC provides a good, if relatively untested, seat for arbitration. It has a comprehensive and modern Model Law-based arbitration law, and an efficient and pro-arbitration English language court system to act as the curial court. DIFC awards have been enforced within the UAE and should be readily enforceable outside the DIFC pursuant to the New York Convention.