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Uncategorized

Belgian Parliament Amends Bill Establishing Brussels International Business Court

On 10 December 2018, the Commission for Justice of the Belgian Parliament published a second draft bill (the Bill) for the creation of the Brussels International Business Court (the BIBC). The Belgian government had already approved a first draft in October 2017 and submitted it to Parliament in May 2018. The Bill now aims to reflect the opinions expressed by the Belgian Council of State and of the High Council of Justice (Hoge Raad voor de Justitie/Conseil supérieur de la Justice), as well as the amendments suggested by various members of the Parliament. This being said, the key features of the BIBC remain largely unchanged.READ MORE

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EU Requests Consultations with South Korea under EU-Korea Trade Agreement Over Labour Rights Commitments

Dear Readers, Happy New Year!

In order to kick-start the year, I wanted to draw your attention to a very interesting development that took place in the field of international trade law at the end of 2018.

On 17 December 2018, the European Union (the EU) requested formal consultations with South Korea following Korea’s failure to implement certain sustainable developments commitments made under the EU-Korea Trade Agreement.

This request for consultations (which was made under Article 13.14 of the EU-Korea Trade Agreement) is the first phase of formal dispute settlement provided for in Chapter 13 of the EU-Korea Trade Agreement. Those consultations will give the EU and Korea an opportunity to discuss the matter, create a channel of communications and find an amicable solution.READ MORE

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European Court of Human Rights Rules That, If So Requested, CAS Hearings Must Be Public

On 2 October 2018, the European Court of Human Rights (the ECtHR) held in the case of Mutu and Pechstein v. Switzerland that arbitration proceedings before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (the CAS) violated the right to a fair trial enshrined in Article 6, paragraph 1 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the ECHR) if those proceedings were not conducted publicly despite the express request of one of the parties.READ MORE

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International Litigation Blog Expands to New Contributors and Opens Twitter Account

Dear Readers,

As summer is fading away and people get back to business after their holiday period, I am happy to announce two significant developments to the International Litigation Blog.

First, I am delighted to welcome five outstanding new contributors with significant expertise in the field of transnational litigation and arbitration:

Isabelle Van Damme (counsel at Van Bael & Bellis and former référendaire at the Court of Justice of the European Union);

Pietro Ortolani (Radboud University, Nijmegen, and former researcher in international law and arbitration at the Max Planck Institute, Luxembourg);

Holger Hestermeyer (King’s College, London);

Julian Arato (Brooklyn Law School); and

Ricardo Ampuero Llerena (President of the Peruvian Commission on Investments).

These five contributors will be invited on a periodic basis to share with us some thoughts and developments on topics of their choice relating to international litigation and arbitration. Given their impressive knowledge and experience in those fields, I am confident that we will all greatly benefit from their insights and views. For more information about them, I invite you to read their full biographies in the “About The Authors” section above.

To give you a taste, Pietro will open the floor tomorrow with a contribution covering the international litigation aspects arising in the context of blockchain and Initial Coin Offering.

Second, I am very happy to announce the launch of a Twitter account which will allow the blog to gain visibility. The goal of this Twitter account is to facilitate the sharing of blog posts and other significant news in the field of international litigation. So, don’t hesitate to follow us there too.

Happy reading!

Quentin

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Draft Bill to Establish Brussels International Business Court

On 15 May 2018, the Belgian government submitted to Parliament a draft bill (the Bill) for the creation of a Brussels International Business Court (the BIBC). As you may remember, we have already discussed the BIBC a couple of months ago after the Belgian government approved the Bill in October 2017. Since then (and before its submission to the Parliament), the Bill has been reviewed by both the High Council of Justice and the Belgian Council of State.READ MORE

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New EU Commission Proposal for a Directive on Collective Representative Actions

On 11 April 2018, the EU Commission published a new legislative proposal on representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers, and repealing Directive 2009/22/EC (the Proposal). In light of increasing cross-border trade and EU-wide commercial strategies, the Proposal aims to facilitate redress for consumers where there are widespread infringements of their rights in more than one EU Member State.READ MORE

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…And Now France To Establish International English-Speaking Court

As we discussed before, Brexit means that the United Kingdom will soon leave the European Union and, consequently, judgments rendered by U.K. courts will no longer enjoy automatic recognition and enforcement in the remaining EU member States. As a result, a creditor of a U.K. judgment will find it more difficult and costly to enforce this judgment in other EU jurisdictions.

In order for litigants to overcome this difficulty, several jurisdictions in the European Union (including Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Ireland) have, over the last couple of months announced plans to establish English-speaking courts which would have jurisdiction to hear international commercial disputes.

The common objective behind all those initiatives is clearly to prepare for Brexit by capturing some of the international litigation business currently located in London.

This trend continues as France just recently announced its intention to open an English-speaking chamber within the Paris Court of Appeal. As is the case in the other jurisdictions that have announced similar plans, this chamber will have jurisdiction to hear disputes with a foreign characteristics (for instance in which at least one of the parties is a foreign entity or if foreign law is applicable). Interestingly, it will also have jurisdiction to hear appeals against international arbitral awards and actions regarding the enforcement of international arbitral awards.READ MORE

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