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

International Arbitration (3rd edition)

Egypt Small Flag Egypt

The legal framework in relation to arbitration is not likely to change in the near future.

France Small Flag France

Decree No. 2011-48 of 13 January 2011 made some significant changes to French arbitration law. The Decree codified some well-established jurisprudence and developed some new principles. It is therefore unlikely that there will be any further extensive changes made to arbitration law in the near future. However, the French courts are often one step ahead of the legislator when it comes to developing French arbitration law.

Cyprus Small Flag Cyprus

We are not aware of any legislation draft being processed or assessed by the House of Representatives to date.

Czech Republic Small Flag Czech Republic

As the last amendments to the legislation came into force during 2017, there are currently no impending plans to reform the arbitration laws.

Romania Small Flag Romania

The arbitration rules embodied in the CPC have been relatively recently enacted in 2013 and no significant changes are foreseen in the near future.

Serbia Small Flag Serbia

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

China Small Flag China

The Arbitration Law currently in force in China was inessentially revised in 2017 and took effect on 1 January 2018.

Revising the Arbitration Law is listed as a Project in Category II of the Legislation Plan of the Standing Committee of the Thirteenth National People's Congress. Projects in this Category need to be prepared without delay and are to be submitted for deliberation when conditions are ripe.

Denmark Small Flag Denmark

a. There is currently no impending plan to reform the Danish Arbitration Act, but The Danish Institute of Arbitration formed a committee in 2012 and published the committee’s recommendations in 2017. They recommended an implementation of Chapter IV A of the UNCITRAL Model Law on Arbitration on interim measures and preliminary orders and an exclusion and limitation of the access to appeal.

Poland Small Flag Poland

Currently there are no impending plans to introduce any amendments to Polish arbitration law. However, it is worth mentioning that material changes to Polish arbitration law concerning disputes arising out of consumer contracts were introduced by the Act on Out-of-Court Consumer Dispute Resolution of 23 September 2016, implementing an EU Directive (2013/11/EU). The act entered into force on 10 January 2017.

Switzerland Small Flag Switzerland

Almost thirty years after its entering into force, on 11 January 2017, the Swiss Federal Council presented a draft partial revision of chapter 12 of the PILA and invited interested parties for consultation on such draft until the end of May 2017. The final legislative proposal will be submitted to the Swiss parliament for approval.

As the chapter 12 of the PILA is still considered to be a modern legislation by the Swiss Federal Council, legal scholars and practitioners, the draft provisions of chapter 12 of the PILA do not aim at fundamentally reforming the rules on international arbitration in Switzerland. In particular, the draft does not constitute a complete revision of the existing legislation. The declared overall objective of the partial revision is for Switzerland to maintain its attractiveness for international arbitration.

Against this background, the revision is directed at (i) implementing and converting into law the developments in international arbitration of the last roughly 25 years driven by the case law of the Swiss Federal Tribunal, (ii) strengthening the party autonomy (iii) and making the provisions of chapter 12 of the PILA more user-friendly. The revised draft chapter 12 of the PILA includes, inter alia, new codified provisions on the revision, rectification, explanation and correction of awards, the possibility to make submissions to the Swiss Federal Tribunal in English, and a relaxation of the form requirements regarding the conclusion of the arbitration agreement.

UAE Small Flag UAE

The arbitration laws of the UAE have been reformed through the introduction of the UAE Arbitration Law. This UAE Arbitration Law replaces articles 203 to 218 of the UAE CPC.

United Kingdom Small Flag United Kingdom

Following consultations, in late 2017, the Law Commission of England and Wales issued its Thirteenth Programme of Law Reform in which it noted that it had decided not to pursue reform of the 1996 Act. However, the Law Commission identified the 1996 Act as an area for potential future reform, in order to maintain London’s status as a leading venue for international arbitration.

Saudi Arabia Small Flag Saudi Arabia

The KSA recently adopted the new Law of Arbitration and repealed the previous Law of Arbitration. In addition, the KSA also promulgated the related Implementing Regulations and the Enforcement Law.

The provisions of the new Law of Arbitration are considered modern and harmonized, as they are essentially based on the UNCITRAL Model law.

There are therefore no current plans to reform the arbitration laws in the KSA.

United States Small Flag United States

There are no plans currently in action to reform or amend the FAA. However, several bills have been introduced by the U.S. Congress in recent years that have proposed amendments to the arbitration framework in the U.S. For instance, several iterations of an “Arbitration Fairness Act” have been introduced which would prohibit pre-dispute arbitration agreements from being valid or enforceable where they require the arbitration of an employment, consumer, antitrust, or civil rights dispute. See, e.g., S.537 - Arbitration Fairness Act of 2017. The proposed Act would require that a court determine the validity and enforceability of an arbitration agreement, rather than an arbitrator, effectively eliminating the principle of competence-competence.

Another recent proposed bill would amend the FAA to invalidate arbitration agreements between parties in certain commercial contracts or transactions if they require arbitration of a claim for damages or injunctive relief brought by an individual or small business arising from the alleged violation of a federal or state statute, the U.S. Constitution, or a state constitution, unless the written agreement to arbitrate is entered into by both parties after the claim has arisen and pertains solely to an existing claim. See S.550 – Restoring Statutory Rights and Interests of the States Act of 2017. This bill proposes that a court, rather than an arbitrator, would determine whether an arbitration agreement is enforceable. Both of the aforementioned bills are still pending in the Senate.

Austria Small Flag Austria

No. The most recent amendment (in force since 1 January 2014) to the legislation governing arbitration in Austria was to establish direct recourse to a specialised chamber of the Austrian Supreme Court as the first and final instance regarding proceedings to set aside an arbitral award.

Nigeria Small Flag Nigeria

There are plans in Nigeria to reform the primary arbitration legislation (the ACA). Currently, there is a bill before the National Assembly (the equivalent of the UK Parliament) to amend the ACA by incorporating 2006 amendments to the Model Law and introduce a body to regulate arbitration in Nigeria.

Portugal Small Flag Portugal

No, as LAV is quite recent, there are no impending plans for its reform.

Russia Small Flag Russia

Russian arbitration laws have already been the subject of a comprehensive reform in 2015–2016, which essentially overhauled the regulation of arbitral institutions, set out lists of non-arbitrable disputes, established special rules for arbitration of corporate disputes, and substantially harmonised Russian arbitration legislation with the UNCITRAL 2006 Model Law.

Ireland Small Flag Ireland

No. Ireland’s law on Arbitration is considered to be state of the art.

Norway Small Flag Norway

There is currently no impending plan to reform the Norwegian arbitration law.

Germany Small Flag Germany

In 2016, the German Federal Ministry of Justice established a task force charged to assess the potential need of modernisation of the German arbitration law. The underlying goal is to strengthen the attractivity of the German seat of arbitration.

Croatia Small Flag Croatia

There are no impending plans to amend the Croatian Arbitration Act.

Chile Small Flag Chile

Yes. In 2009 a draft bill was presented to the congress with the purpose of reforming the system of civil procedure through the introduction of a new code called the “Civil Procedure Code”. In 2012 a new draft bill was presented in this regard, with some modifications, but maintaining the intention to create a new set of rules to regulate the civil procedures in Chile.

The creation of the new Civil Procedure Code aims to modernize the current procedure system for the resolution of civil and commercial matter and to adequate it to the changes and reforms that have previously taken place in the procedural systems of family and labor matters.

The project of the Civil Procedure Code does not include a new regulation for domestic arbitration in Chile, because it was considered that domestic arbitration was to be regulated by a different and separate law. Specifically, the 2012 draft bill stated that the creation of laws regarding alternative methods of dispute resolution and domestic arbitration was to be encouraged, considering those regulations as essential complements of the new Civil Procedure Code.

In 2013 the Chilean Ministry of Justice and Human Rights formed a special commission for the elaboration of a draft bill in domestic arbitration. Its main purpose was to modernize the domestic arbitration regulation for it to resemble the provisions contained in the ICAL. It was also taken into consideration the fact that the statues governing domestic arbitration are the CJO and the CCP, which date since the past century.

The 2013 draft bill for domestic arbitration mainly stated for the strengthening of the parties autonomy, the reduction of the local courts intervention and the limitations for the challenge of the arbitral award. Regarding the latter, the draft bill establishes the motion to dismiss (annulment), under very specific requirements, as the only way to challenge an arbitral award, unless the parties reach a prior agreement in order to constitute an arbitral appeal tribunal. Another innovation of the said draft is that it includes a regulation for the institutions that may serve as arbitration centers.

Notwithstanding the above, Chile still does not count with a domestic arbitration law. Therefore, currently domestic arbitration continues to be regulated only by the CJO and the CCP, while international arbitration is regulated by the ICAL.

Under this scenario, more protection is brought to the parties under the international arbitration rules, than under domestic arbitration regulation, since in the former, the motion to dismiss the award (annulment) may not be waived by them in advance in their arbitration agreement. On the contrary, under national arbitration regulation, parties may waive their right to all recourses against an arbitral award.

Philippines Small Flag Philippines

There are several bills currently pending in both houses of the Philippine Congress. Notably, these bills are:

a.) Senate Bill No. 2033 - An Act Creating The Philippine Arbitration Commission And Institutionalizing Compulsory Arbitration For Specific Areas Of Dispute, And For Other Purposes, otherwise known “Philippine Arbitration Commission Act Of 2017”. This bill introduces mandatory arbitration to disputes involving medical malpractice, insurance law, maritime laws, intellectual property laws, and intra-corporate matters or collectively defined as “Areas of Dispute”; and
b.) House Bill No. HB04072 - An Act Further Strengthening Voluntary Arbitration As The Preferential Mode Of Labor Dispute Settlement, Amending For This Purpose Articles 217, 260, 261, 262-A, 262-B, 263(G) And Article 277(F), And Incorporating A New Article 262-D Of Presidential Decree No. 442, Otherwise Known As The Labor Code Of The Philippines, As Amended.

Greece Small Flag Greece

Reforms are under way as regards institutional arbitrations administered by the Athens Bar Association and Thessaloniki Bar Association.

Updated: May 3, 2019