Serbia: Arbitration

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This country-specific Q&A provides an overview of the legal framework and key issues surrounding arbitration law in Serbia.

This Q&A is part of the global guide to Arbitration.

For a full list of jurisdictional Q&As visit http://www.inhouselawyer.co.uk/index.php/practice-areas/arbitration/

  1. What legislation applies to arbitration in your country? Are there any mandatory laws?

    Relevant legislation in Serbia consists of Serbian Act on Arbitration and provisions of several other legal instruments that contain norms of relevance to the arbitration process.

    Act on Arbitration, enacted in 2006, governs all arbitrations that have their arbitral seat in Serbia. It consists of a number of mandatory provisions regarding arbitral proceedings as well as rules on setting aside and recognition of foreign arbitral awards.

    Other important source of law for the arbitration seated in Serbia is the Private International Law Act, containing provisions on procedure for recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards and specifying the cases of exclusive jurisdiction of the state court that can affect the arbitrability of the dispute.

    Serbian Civil Procedure Act is of relevance to the arbitration in cases when the state court is acting as an authority for arbitration assistance and supervision and intervenes with the arbitral procedure e.g. when taking evidence, when enforcing interim measures or setting aside an arbitral award or deciding on the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards. In such cases it shall do so in accordance with its own procedures prescribed in the said Act.

    Serbian Act on investments also mentions arbitration as a possible means of resolving a dispute arising out of the investment, as an alternative to the state courts.

  2. Is your country a signatory to the New York Convention? Are there any reservations to the general obligations of the Convention?

    Serbia is a signatory state to the New York convention since October 10, 1981. It has retained the status of the signatory state previously held by the former Yugoslavia through succession.

    Three reservations to the New York Convention were put forward: (1) The Convention is applied only to those arbitral awards which were adopted after the coming of the Convention into effect (i.e. no retroactive effect); (2) Convention is applied on a reciprocal basis only to those arbitral awards which were adopted on the territory of the other State Party to the Convention and (3) Convention is applied with respect to the disputes arising from the legal relations, contractual and non-contractual, which, according to Serbian national legislation are considered as economic (i.e. commercial).

  3. What other arbitration-related treaties and conventions is your country a party to?

    Most prominent arbitration-related treaty that Serbia is a signatory state to is the Convention on the settlement of investment disputes between states and nationals of other states (ICSID Convention).

    Serbia is also a party to the European Convention on International Commercial Arbitration.

    In addition, a broad scope of bilateral treaties with vast number of countries are in force. Those concerning mutual legal assistance in civil and commercial matters can also regulate recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards.

  4. Is the law governing international arbitration in your country based on the UNCITRAL Model Law? Are there significant differences between the two?

    Serbian Arbitration act is based on UNCITRAL Model Law on international commercial arbitration of 1985, and UNCITRAL lists Serbia as one of countries whose legislation is based on UNCITRAL model law.

    Some differences between the two exist, most notably regarding provisions on appointment of arbitrators and in relation with the recourse against the award.

    Unlike UNCITRAL Model Law, Serbian Arbitration Act prescribes that the number of arbitrators must be odd. Furthermore, in case a sole arbitrator is to be appointed, parties are given a 30-day period to agree on the arbitrator, after which the sole arbitrator shall be appointed by the appointing authority or in the absence of the said authority, the competent court. Such time limit does not exist in the Model law.

    On the topic of recourse against the award, Serbian law prescribes an additional reason for setting aside an award, provided that the award is based on a false testimony of a witness or an expert witness, or on a forged document, or the award results from a criminal offence of an arbitrator or a party, if the abovementioned facts are determined as true by the final and binding court judgment.

  5. Are there any impending plans to reform the arbitration laws in your country?

    To our knowledge, there are no impending plans to reform the relevant laws.

  6. What arbitral institutions (if any) exist in your country? Have there been any amendments to their rules or are there any being considered?

    Most prominent arbitral institutions in Serbia is the Permanent Arbitration (formerly known as Foreign Trade Court of Arbitration) of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia (SCC) with a longlisting tradition in dispute settlement.

    In 2016, following the reform of the institution, most recent rules on procedure of the Permanent Arbitration (PA) were adopted.

    Belgrade Arbitration Center (BAC), another arbitral institution that has been formed recently, has been founded by the Serbian Arbitration Association in 2013. Rules of BAC are in force since January 1, 2014.

    The said rules differ from the rules of PA, most notably with regard to the costs of arbitration and the confidentiality of the proceedings and the arbitral award.

  7. What are the validity requirements for an arbitration agreement under the laws of your country?

    Under the aforementioned Act on Arbitration, valid arbitration agreement must meet both formal and substantive requirements. Formal requirement obliges that the agreement shall be in writing.

    As for substantive requirements, the agreement must be made regarding a defined legal relationship, i.e. general arbitration agreements concerning all future disputes between the parties are forbidden.

    Furthermore, subject matter of the dispute must be arbitrable under Serbian law.

    Also, the number of arbitrators must be odd.

    Finally, it must not be concluded under duress, fraud or in error.

    Same as any other agreement, validity of the arbitration agreement calls for the parties to have the legal capacity to enter into an arbitration agreement.

  8. Are arbitration clauses considered separable from the main contract?

    Yes, Act on Arbitration specifically prescribes that an arbitration clause shall be considered independent of the main contract when deciding on the existence and validity of the said clause.

    In addition, the decision of the tribunal that the contract containing an arbitration clause is null and void does not entail the invalidity of that clause.

  9. Is there anything particular to note in your jurisdiction with regard to multi-party or multi-contract arbitration?

    Serbian Act on Arbitration has no provisions regulating either multi-party or multi-contract arbitrations.

    However, Rules of Permanent Arbitration at the SCC and BAC Rules both contain a provision regarding joint appointment of an arbitrator in a multi-party dispute.

    As for multi-contract arbitrations, both previously mentioned Serbian arbitral institutions in their rules on procedure encompass a clause regarding a possible joinder of claims and consolidation of the procedure in the interest of efficiency.

  10. How is the law applicable to the substance determined? Is there a specific set of choice of law rules in your country?

    The law prescribes that the arbitral tribunal shall decide the dispute in accordance with the law or legal rules chosen by the parties. Therefore, if the parties designate law of a particular state such designation of the law shall be construed as directly referring to the substantive law of that state, and not to its conflict of laws rules, unless the parties explicitly agree otherwise.

    Failing any designation by the parties, the tribunal shall determine the applicable law or rules on the basis of conflict of laws rules which it considers applicable. Nonetheless, the tribunal shall always take into account the terms of the contract and usages.

    The dispute may also be decided ex aequo et bono if the parties have expressly agreed so.

  11. Are any types of dispute considered non-arbitrable? Has there been any evolution in this regard in recent years?

    Under Serbian law, the dispute is arbitrable if it meets the following two conditions:

    Firstly, the subject matter of the dispute must concern a right in property that the parties may freely dispose of, and secondly, it cannot concern a matter which is within exclusive competence of state courts.

    In addition, Private International Law Act prescribes a number of disputes that are within the exclusive competence of state courts which exempts them from arbitration e.g. disputes related to the proprietary rights over real property in Serbia, family and matrimonial disputes or inheritance and testamentary matters.

    Moreover, some other laws contain provisions which stipulate the competence of courts for certain types of disputes making it less clear whether these provisions also create an exclusive jurisdiction of the said court. Such is the case of the competent court regarding corporate disputes.

    It has remained unclear to this day whether matters related to insolvency and winding up proceedings, antitrust/competition law, intellectual property rights or consumer rights are deemed arbitrable.

  12. In your country, are there any restrictions in the appointment of arbitrators?

    In Serbia, any natural person having contractual capacity, irrespective of its nationality, may act as an arbitrator. Arbitrator must have the qualities agreed upon by the parties.

    Only limitations imposed by law with regard to the choice of arbitrator is that it cannot be a person sentences to an unsuspended sentence of imprisonment while the consequences of the conviction are in effect.

    The parties are also free to agree on a procedure of appointing the arbitrators, and no limits are imposed on the parties in that regard.

  13. Are there any default requirements as to the selection of a tribunal?

    Main requirement is that the dispute must be decided by an odd number of arbitrators.

    Subsequently, Serbian Act on Arbitration contains provision that regulate appointment of arbitrators, should parties fail to reach an agreement on the issue.

    If a dispute is to be resolved by a sole arbitrator, the parties shall agree on his appointment within 30 days of the day that one party requests the other to jointly appoint the arbitrator.
    In default of such a provision, the appointment shall be made by the appointing authority, and if there is no appointing authority, or the appointing authority fails to appoint the arbitrator, the appointment shall be made by the competent court.

    If the dispute is to be resolved by three arbitrators, each party shall appoint one arbitrator within 30 days from the day the other party has invited it to do so. If the requested party fails to appoint the arbitrator, arbitrator shall be appointed by the appointing authority designated by the parties and, if there is no appointing authority, or it fails to do so, appointment shall be made by the competent court.

    The chairman of the tribunal shall be appointed by the party-appointed arbitrators within 30 days from their appointment. If the party-appointed arbitrators fail to appoint the presiding arbitrator, the presiding arbitrator shall be appointed by the appointing authority (and, if there is no appointing authority or it fails to do appoint, by the competent court).

  14. Can the local courts intervene in the selection of arbitrators? If so, how?

    Under Serbian law, competent courts may take part in the process of selection of arbitrators in cases when the arbitrators are not appointed by the parties or by the appointing authority (provided it exists). The decision of the court on the appointment of an arbitrator is final and binding.

    In addition, competent courts can be called upon to decide upon the challenge of arbitrators. Such a decision can be subject to an appeal.

    Finally, courts can decide on the motion to revoke the arbitrator’s mandate. In that case the court decision on the matter is final and binding.

  15. Can the appointment of an arbitrator be challenged? What are the grounds for such challenge? What is the procedure for such challenge? Has there been an increase in number of challenges in your jurisdiction?

    Appointment of arbitrators may be challenged only if the circumstances exist that may justifiably raise doubts as to the arbitrators’ impartiality or independence or if they do not possess qualities agreed upon by the parties.

    Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, a party shall submit a request for challenge of an arbitrator in writing within 15 days after becoming aware of the appointment of the arbitrator or of grounds for his challenge.

    The party may challenge an arbitrator appointed by that party or jointly with the opposing party, only if the grounds for the challenge have occurred after the appointment, or the party became aware of those facts after the appointment.

    Unless the parties agreed otherwise, the competent court shall decide on the challenge of an arbitrator.

    The parties who entrusted the organization of their arbitration to a permanent arbitral institution shall have the challenge of arbitrators resolved in accordance with the rules of that institution.

    The procedure of challenge of arbitrator does not prevent the arbitration from continuing with the arbitration proceedings and rendering an award.

  16. What happens in the case of a truncated tribunal? Is the tribunal able to continue with the proceedings?

    Serbian law does not provide for a possibility that a truncated tribunal may continue with the proceedings.

    Instead, a subsequent arbitrator shall be appointed in accordance with the rules that were applicable to the appointment of the arbitrator being replaced.

  17. Are arbitrators immune from liability?

    There are no provisions concerning immunity of arbitrators in the Serbian legislation.

    However, arbitrators could be subject to a general regime of liability prescribed under Serbian Law on contracts and torts, and could in theory be found liable to compensate damages they incurred to a party provided that this damage could be ascribed to their willful intent or negligence.

    In practice, an arbitrator would likely argue that he acted with due care and that therefore he cannot be found liable. The exception could be made in case of the existence of criminal conviction of an arbitrator for an offense made in relation to an arbitration proceeding.

  18. Is the principle of competence-competence recognised in your country?

    Yes, under Act on Arbitration the arbitral tribunal may rule on its own jurisdiction, including any objections with respect to the existence or validity of the arbitration agreement.

    As for jurisdictional objections before the tribunal, tribunal may rule on them as a preliminary issue, or in the award on the merits.

    If the tribunal rules on jurisdiction as a preliminary issue, each party may request the competent court to decide on jurisdiction within 30 days from receipt of the decision on jurisdiction. Decision of the court on the matter is subject to no appeal.

    Alternatively, after the tribunal renders the award, the courts can review the existence of grounds for jurisdictional objection only in a procedure of setting aside or annulment of the award.

  19. What is the approach of local courts towards a party commencing litigation in apparent breach of an arbitration agreement?

    In case a dispute is brought before the court, in an apparent breach of the arbitration agreement, the court will decline its jurisdiction and will dismiss the lawsuit if the respondent raised an objection that arbitration clause exists between the parties. This objection needs to be submitted before entering into the pleadings of the merits of the dispute.

    Even in case the responded submits such objection, the court commence the litigation proceedings if it determines that the arbitration agreement is manifestly null and void, inoperative or incapable of being performed.

    Courts are not obliged to dismiss a claim for the lack of jurisdiction in cases the other side fails to invoke the existence of the arbitration agreement.

  20. How are arbitral proceedings commenced in your country? Are there any key provisions under the arbitration laws relating to limitation periods or time bars of which the parties should be aware?

    Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the arbitral proceedings shall commence on the day that the institution receives the request for arbitration or statement of claim, in case an arbitration is administered by the arbitral institution.

    In an ad hoc arbitration, the proceedings shall commence on the day when the respondent receives the request for arbitration or statement of claim and a notice on appointment of arbitrator.

    Arbitration law do not provide for the limitation periods/time bars with regard to the commencement of the procedure. However, rules of statute of limitation contained within substantive laws apply and are of relevance when deciding on when the request for arbitration should be filed.

  21. What happens when a respondent fails to participate in the arbitration? Can the local courts compel parties to arbitrate?

    Act on Arbitration contains a number of provisions aimed at compelling the respondent to participate in the arbitration.

    These include provisions on appointment of arbitrators in case a party refuses to participate in the appointment process, as well as the rule that, if a party fails to deliver the statement of defense or participate at the hearing, this does not prevent the proceedings to continue.

    Anyhow, local courts do not have the authority to compel a party to arbitrate.

  22. In what circumstances is it possible for a state or state entity to invoke state immunity in connection with the commencement of arbitration proceedings?

    There are no specific provisions governing state immunity.

    However, after the state gave consent to arbitration by way of concluding the arbitration agreement or by virtue of an international treaty there should be no legal ground for the state to invoke state immunity in connection with the commencement of arbitration proceedings.

  23. In what instances can third parties or non-signatories be bound by an arbitration agreement or award? Can local courts order third parties to participate in arbitration proceedings in your country?

    Serbian Act on Arbitration prescribes that the arbitration agreement shall remain in force even in case of the assignment of contract or claim, unless agreed otherwise. The same applies to subrogation and other cases of transfer of claim, e.g. legal consolidations through merger or acquisition.

    Extension of the arbitration agreement to non-signatories in cases that concern multiple parties such as “group of companies” doctrine, piercing of the corporate veil etc. is not regulated under Serbian law.

    Local courts cannot order third parties to participate in arbitration proceedings.

  24. What interim measures are available? Will local courts issue interim measures pending the constitution of the tribunal?

    Interim measures may be granted at the request of each party by courts and arbitral tribunals alike.

    Court is entitled to act in accordance with the provisions governing enforcement and security, meaning it has an authority to, among other, order the respondent to refrain from alienating, encumbering or disposing of the assets, to seize respondent’s current assets and financial instruments and place them in court deposit or with the claimant or the third party for safekeeping, to place a freezing order on the respondent’s particular immovable property to prevent him from disposing off of it, to instruct banks to freeze the assets in the accounts of the respondent, to temporarily prohibit the settlement of the debts towards the respondent by his debtors, to instruct the Central securities depository to place a temporary ban on trading with the financial instruments in the ownership of the respondent.

    The court may also order the respondent to refrain from damaging the assets, and might order him to take steps to protect and preserve the value of the assets. It could also order the respondent to refrain from performing specified activities that could damage the claimant’s position.

    Local courts are entitled to issue the abovementioned interim measures before or during the arbitral proceedings, meaning even before the constitution of the tribunal.

    On the other hand, the arbitral tribunal may order an interim measure that it considers necessary in respect of the subject matter of the dispute, unless otherwise agreed by the parties, and may at the same time order the opposing party to provide for an appropriate security.

    Unlike court ordered interim measures that are enforced in accordance with the state law on enforcement, the law does not provide a mechanism for the enforcement of interim measures rendered by the arbitral tribunals which limits their effectiveness.

  25. Are there particular rules governing evidentiary matters in arbitration? Will the local courts in your jurisdiction play any role in the obtaining of evidence?

    Law on Arbitration contains general rules on examination of witnesses and experts.

    In this regard, the law provides that witnesses may be examined at the hearing, or, if the parties do not object, they may also be examined outside the hearing. The tribunal cannot impose penalties against a witness refusing to give testimony.

    As for experts, the law provides that the arbitral tribunal may appoint an expert to provide its opinion on the issues determined by the tribunal. The tribunal may order the parties to provide all necessary information and documents to the expert. Experts can be challenges in the same procedure as it is prescribed for the challenge of arbitrators.

    At the request from the tribunal, local courts may assist in obtaining the evidence. In that case, the court may use the power vested in him to fine or summon a witnesses in order for him to give a testimony which is to be used in arbitration proceedings.

  26. What ethical codes and other professional standards, if any, apply to counsel and arbitrators conducting proceedings in your country?

    Ethical standards of the Serbian Bar Association apply to Serbian counsels in all the proceedings in which they take part in, including arbitration proceedings.

    Parties may also agree on application of certain ethical codes and standards of conduct, such as IBA Guidelines on Parties’ Representation in International Arbitration.

  27. How are the costs of arbitration proceedings estimated and allocated?

    The amount of costs shall be determined by the arbitral tribunal.

    In case the dispute is to be arbitrated by the arbitral institution, the costs shall be independently established according to the scale of the respective institution.

    In practice, specific circumstances of the case and in particular, conduct of the parties, are taken into consideration when making the decision on costs.

  28. Can pre- and post-award interest be included on the principal claim and costs incurred?

    The issue of interest on a principal claim and costs is a matter of applicable substantive law.

    Under Serbian law, it is possible to claim both pre and post award interest.

    When it comes to costs of proceedings, Serbian law does not contain any specific provisions on interest on costs, but as a general principle (which is widely applied in court proceedings), claim on costs becomes due at the time the award becomes enforceable.

    On the other hand, in case the arbitral tribunal order the payment of pre-award interest on costs this kind of award could be recognized and enforced in Serbia.

  29. What legal requirements are there in your country for the recognition of an award?

    Procedure for recognition and enforcement applies only to foreign arbitral awards.

    Law defines a foreign arbitral award as the one made by an arbitral tribunal with its seat outside of the Republic of Serbia, as well as an award made by the arbitral tribunal seated in Serbia, in case a foreign law was applied to the arbitral proceedings.

    Recognition regime in place is the one provided by the New York Convention.

    The procedure for recognition is initiated by filing a request for recognition of the award before the competent court. Party filing the request shall enclose the original arbitral award or a certified copy thereof together with the arbitration agreement or similar document and a certified translation of the award and of the arbitration agreement to the official language of the competent court (Serbian).

    Alternatively, instead of initiating a separate procedure on recognition, there is also a possibility to directly initiate enforcement based on the arbitral award and request that the court decides on the recognition of the award as a preliminary issue in the enforcement procedure.

  30. What is the estimated timeframe for the recognition and enforcement of an award? May a party bring a motion for the recognition and enforcement of an award on an ex parte basis?

    It is difficult to provide precise answer to this question as different courts are in competence to recognize and enforce the award. Therefore, estimated timeframe for the process of enforcement and recognition of an award can range anywhere from a three to six months, but sometimes it could take more time.

    It largely depends on whether the party against whom it is invoked furnishes proof on any of the grounds for refusing the recognition and enforcement, which could in turn stall the recognition process.

    Grounds for refusing the recognition are basically the same as in the UNCITRAL model law.

    Also, an appeal against the ruling on the recognition and enforcement may be lodged within 30 days of the day it has been received.

    A party may bring a motion on an ex parte basis.

  31. Does the arbitration law of your country provide a different standard of review for recognition and enforcement of a foreign award compared with a domestic award?

    Yes. Serbian law prescribes that domestic arbitral awards shall have the effect of a final and binding judgment of the domestic court and shall be enforced in accordance with provisions of the statute regulating enforcement procedures. Recourse against the domestic award is an application for setting aside of the award.

    Standards of setting aside of the domestic awards are similar to the ones required for the recognition and enforcement. As mentioned before, Serbian law prescribes an additional reason for setting aside an award, provided that the award is based on a false testimony of a witness or an expert witness, or on a forged document, or the award results from a criminal offence of an arbitrator or a party, if the abovementioned facts are determined as true by the final and binding court judgment.

  32. Does the law impose limits on the available remedies? Are some remedies not enforceable by the local courts?

    There are no specific limitations of the remedies that the arbitral tribunal may award, other than the mandatory provisions of Serbian law (such as public policy limitations) and such remedies are enforceable by local courts.

  33. Can arbitration proceedings and awards be appealed or challenged in local courts? What are the grounds and procedure?

    It is not possible to challenge the award on merits by an appeal to the court.

    The only way in which a party may challenge an award before the court is by requesting that the court set aside a domestic award. Foreign awards may be challenged in the course of procedure for their recognition.

    Under Serbian law, the award may be set aside for following reasons: (i) if the arbitration agreement is invalid under the law applicable to its validity; (ii) if the party against whom the award was rendered was not properly informed on the arbitration proceedings, appointment of arbitrator, or was prevented from making its arguments for other reasons; (iii) if the arbitral tribunal decided on matters beyond the scope of the arbitration agreement; (iv) if the composition of the arbitral tribunal or the conduct of arbitration proceedings were in contradiction to the arbitration agreement or the applicable arbitration rules of a particular arbitration institution; (v) if the arbitral award is based on a false statement of a witness or expert, on a falsified document or if the award was made due to a criminal offense of a party or on arbitrator (provided that these reasons are proven by a final court judgment); (vi) if under Serbian law, the subject matter of the award is not arbitrable; (vii) if the decision is contrary to the public policy of Serbia.

  34. Can the parties waive any rights of appeal or challenge to an award by agreement before the dispute arises (such as in the arbitration clause)?

    Under Serbian law, a waiver of right to challenge an award before the dispute arises would be considered as null and void. Even if the parties included such a waiver in their agreement, it would have no legal effect and it would still be possible to challenge the award before the competent court.

  35. To what extent might a state or state entity successfully raise a defence of state or sovereign immunity at the enforcement stage?

    Under Serbian enforcement law (which also applies to enforcement of arbitration awards), enforcement over property of a foreign state may only be performed with the written consent of a ministry competent for foreign affairs, or if the foreign state consents to enforcement over its property.

    In all other cases, foreign states enjoy immunity from enforcement. As for enforcement over the property of the Republic of Serbia, such enforcement may be conducted, however, it is not possible to enforce claims over particular types of property – these include property such as real estate used by state authorities, property used for defense purposes, protected natural goods, cultural goods, etc.

  36. To what extent might a third party challenge the recognition of an award?

    A third party is not entitled to challenge the recognition of an award.

    A possibility exists for a third party, which has a legal interest, to oppose the recognition of an award and to intervene in the recognition proceedings. Should that be the case, the third party, if granted such status in the court proceedings, would have the position of an intervener, and would be able to put forward legal arguments, furnish evidence, file legal remedies etc.

  37. Have there been any significant developments with regard to third party funding in your jurisdiction recently?

    Serbian law does not contain rules of third party funding and in practice there was no significant developments in Serbian jurisdiction.

  38. Is emergency arbitrator relief available in your country? Is this frequently used?

    Neither Serbian Law on Arbitration, nor the rules of arbitral institutions in Serbia adopted emergency arbitrator relief.

  39. Are there arbitral laws or arbitration institutional rules in your country providing for simplified or expedited procedures for claims under a certain value? Are they often used?

    Rules of the Permanent Arbitration at the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia provide for expedited procedure. These rules apply in cases where the amount of dispute does not exceed EUR 50,000, as well as in cases where the amount in dispute is above EUR 50,000, if the parties agreed on application of expedited procedure.

  40. Have there been any mass (arbitration) claims in your jurisdiction?

    There were no mass arbitration claims in your jurisdiction.

  41. Have measures been taken by arbitral institutions in your country to promote transparency in arbitration?

    With regard to transparency of arbitration proceedings, the Law on Arbitration and Permanent Rules on Arbitration at SCC contain no provisions regulating this area, so in practice, the issue of transparency and confidentiality remains a matter of agreement of the parties in particular proceedings.

    On the other hand, BAC Rules provide for confidentiality of arbitration proceedings and the award, however, in the interest of transparency, BAC Rules allow the institution to publish arbitral awards or excerpts thereto, after they have been anonymized, unless the party to the proceedings request in writing that the award is not published.

  42. Is diversity in the choice of arbitrators and counsel (e.g. gender, age, origin) actively promoted in your country? If so, how?

    Diversity in the choice of arbitrators and counsel is not promoted at an institutional level, however, in reality the pool of arbitration practitioners in Serbia includes a number of young experts, as well as many prominent female practitioners, both as counsel and as arbitrators.

  43. Have there been any developments regarding mediation in your jurisdiction?

    There is a legal frame governing mediation and a number of institutions in Serbia which aim to promote mediation (Serbian National Association of Mediators, Partners Serbia, etc.). However, mediation has not taken hold in Serbia and the number of disputes that are resolved through mediation is negligible.

  44. Have there been any recent court decisions in your country considering the setting aside of an award that has been enforced in another jurisdiction or vice versa?

    To our best knowledge, there have not been such court decisions in Serbia.

  45. Is corruption an issue that is regularly raised in your jurisdiction? What standard do local courts apply for proving of corruption?

    An initiative for amendment of the Arbitration act was brought forward on January 17, 2018 in an official report by the Anti-corruption council, a state body formed by the Government of the Republic of Serbia monitoring the corruption level and advising on measures of improvement in that field.

    The said report focuses on the need for transparency in relation to the process of appointing of an arbitrator i.e. naming the arbitrator by a party in cases when a party to the arbitration is the state itself or a public entity in control of the assets in which the state has property interest.

    The said report is of an advisory nature; it creates no obligation on the part of the Government to act upon it and no action was taken in this regard.