Conference Russian Arbitration Day 2022

The first RAD took place on June 20, 2013 in the Congress Hall of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation. The launch date of the first RAD conference coincided with the twentieth anniversary of the enactment of the Law of the Russian Federation dated July 7, 1993 No. 5338-1 “On International Commercial Arbitration”. Anton Asoskov, Nina Vilkova, Roman Khodykin moderated the three sessions within the Conference and edited the first issue of the “New Horizons of International Arbitration” digest.

It was not altogether surprising, given the anniversary, that many discussions of the first RAD session revolved around the topic of whether laws in the area of dispute resolution should be amended through arbitral proceedings.

The burning necessity to introduce amendments and rely on international and national best practices was discussed by Andrey Kostin, the Chairman of the International Commercial Arbitration Court at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, Professor, Head of the International Private and Civil Law Department with the Moscow State Institute for International Relations (MGIMO), and his colleague Sergey Lebedev, Professor with the International Private and Civil Law Department, MGIMO, member of the Presidium of the International Commercial Arbitration Court. Andrey Kostin also emphasized the need of establishing strict criteria to the formation of arbitral tribunals.

Vladimir Khvalei, Partner, Baker & McKenzie’s Moscow office, Vice President of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, also commented on the operation of arbitral tribunals and concluded that the fundamental issues associated with their functioning should be dealt with primarily not through introducing new regulatory enactments, but by exercising further judicial control by state courts when parties to arbitral proceedings approach them for issuing a writ of execution of an arbitral award.

Natalia Doronina, Deputy Director of the Institute of Legislation and Comparative Law under the Government of the Russian Federation, D.J.S., explored matters pertaining to the correlation between investment arbitration and national law.

The second session on procedural matters arising in arbitral proceedings accumulated the biggest number of reports. Professor Loukas Mistelis, Doctor of Law, Director of the School of International Arbitration (SIA), Queen Mary University of London, dedicated his report to whether or not state judges can act as arbitrators. Prof. Mistelis noted that an arbitrator is responsible exclusively to the parties, which appointed the arbitrator to resolve their dispute. On the other hand, a judge enjoys the authority vested by the state. This issue was of particular interest in light of the fact that the Conference was attended by Sir Bernard Rix, a retired Lord Justice of Appeal, who was then at the point of starting his career as an arbitrator.

Evgenia Rubinina, Lawyer, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP (London), reviewed, in the context of international commercial arbitration – including proceedings involving Russian companies – the issue of evidentiary privileges. The privileges in question arise in the situations when documents or witness testimonies are barred or treated as inadmissible evidence in order to protect certain statutory interests exemplified by the attorney-client privilege, negotiations privilege, clergy-penitent privilege, etc.

Finally, in the course of the third session, the speakers discussed applicable law as such and the determination of the content of foreign law in arbitration. Dmitry Shemelin, Senior Lawyer, Grischenko & Partners Law Firm (Kiev), brought up the issue of how the standard of proof had changed in international arbitration.

In his research, Noah Rubins, Partner, International Arbitration Group in the Paris office of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, explored overriding mandatory rules in international commercial arbitration.

Andrey Panov, Lawyer, Norton Rose Fulbright (Moscow), addressed the principle of “jura novit curia” in international commercial arbitration.

Ivan Chuprunov, a PhD student at the Civil Law Department, Lomonosov Moscow State University Law School, considered the law applicable to arbitrability of disputes.

All RAD reports were published in the New Horizons of International Arbitration. Issue 1” professional digest.