The ACICA Arbitration Rules 2021: Advancing Australia's Pro-Arbitration Culture

Journal of International Arbitration, 38:6, 2021 (Forthcoming)

27 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2021 Last revised: 18 Oct 2021

See all articles by Luke R. Nottage

Luke R. Nottage

The University of Sydney Law School; The University of Sydney - Australian Network for Japanese Law; University of Wollongong - Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts (LHA)

Julia Dreosti

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Robert Tang

Clifford Chance

Date Written: September 26, 2021

Abstract

This article compares the new Rules of the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration with ACICA’s 2016 Rules and those of other arbitration institutions, especially in the Asia-Pacific region. It shows how the revisions help to minimise formalisation and promote efficiencies, arguably essential for arbitration’s legitimacy given that many of arbitration’s design features are traded off for an attenuated model of the rule of the law, according to a recent analysis by Singapore’s Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon. The article explains new ACICA Rules aimed at reducing costs and delays, including measures to deepen digitalization of arbitration following the COVID-19 pandemic and to reduce the consent-based limitations inherent in arbitration, especially for multi-party and multi-contract disputes. Other new provisions include time limits for awards, and reference to mediation, although not ultimately hybrid Arb-Med. The article also examines how the Rules balance confidentiality with transparency, including new provisions for disclosure of third-party funding. It concludes by reiterating how the 2021 ACICA Rules help meet the expectations of international arbitration experts, according to recent surveys, and link to possible further reforms to underpin Australia’s increasingly pro-arbitration culture.

Keywords: international commercial arbitration, Rules, Australia, Asia-Pacific, remote hearings, confidentiality, third-party funding, law reform, costs and delays

JEL Classification: K10, K30, K33

Suggested Citation

Nottage, Luke R. and Dreosti, Julia and Tang, Robert, The ACICA Arbitration Rules 2021: Advancing Australia's Pro-Arbitration Culture (September 26, 2021). Journal of International Arbitration, 38:6, 2021 (Forthcoming), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3931086

Luke R. Nottage (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney Law School ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

The University of Sydney - Australian Network for Japanese Law

Room 640, Building F10, Eastern Avenue
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

University of Wollongong - Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts (LHA) ( email )

Fairymeadow, Northfields Ave
Building 19
Wollongong, New South Wales 2522
Australia

Julia Dreosti

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Robert Tang

Clifford Chance

Sydney Office

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