Merchants of Peace.
11 AM EDT
The famed French philosopher Montesquieu once observed, “Peace is a natural effect of trade.” That concept is the foundation for one of the world’s newest international commercial arbitration institutions – the Jerusalem Arbitration Center (JAC).
Established in November 2013 as a joint venture between ICC Israel and ICC Palestine (in association with the Paris-based ICC International Court of Arbitration), the JAC was established to provide an alternative to domestic courts for Israeli and Palestinian businesses willing to resolve their commercial disputes peacefully. Stemming from the realization that domestic courts do not always provide a forum perceived by both parties to be neutral and impartial, and in light of the problems encountered by parties seeking to enforce domestic court judgments issued by Palestinian courts in Israel and vice versa, the JAC seeks to promote arbitration as a viable, apolitical and effective alternative for the settlement of commercial disputes between Israelis and Palestinians. It is hoped that this, in turn, will enhance the investment climate between the two communities, which may in turn promote peaceful relations. Palestine's accession to the New York Convention in January 2015 reinforces the JAC's mandate by significantly facilitating the recognition and enforcement of foreign and "non-domestic" arbitral awards in the Palestinian Territories, including those rendered under the JAC's auspices.
Three and a half years after the official launch of the JAC, Nadia Darwazeh, the Center's first Secretary General, will reflect upon the JAC's experiences to date, as well as the challenges and promises of that institution as a potential tool for the promotion of the rule of law in conflict areas such as Israel and the Palestinian Territories. In particular, she will address:
- How the JAC came into existence;
- The ICC’s role in the creation of the JAC;
- How the JAC's Arbitration Rules were designed to provide for a neutral, apolitical, impartial, reliable, speedy, effective and cost-efficient process;
- The JAC's initiatives to render the arbitral process accessible and affordable to small and medium-sized enterprises;
- The reception of the JAC by the local communities (including businesses, judges and politicians);
- Where the JAC stands today;
- The opportunities for interested professionals to become involved with the JAC's activities.
- Nadia Darwazeh, First Secretary General of the Jerusalem Arbitration Center and Partner at Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP (Paris)