International arbitration is the dispute resolution forum of choice for most international contracts, in particular in the construction and energy sectors.
Arbitration can be procedurally slow and disproportionately expensive for some disputes. It does not enable parties to resolve their disputes as quickly and efficiently as other mechanisms, most notably adjudication, which is available in the UK and a number of other common law countries. This is a problem for construction parties, especially as the speedy resolution of disputes and release of cash plays an important role in smooth project delivery.
In March 2017, the ICC launched its expedited procedure provisions (EPP). This aims to shorten the length of arbitration proceedings. Certain other arbitration institutions have similar procedures. The EPP quickly gained popularity and, in 2020, the ICC reported a significant increase in its use. This is set to continue with an expanded second iteration of the EPP, which launched with the introduction of the ICC’s Arbitration Rules 2021 with effect from 1 January 2021.
This post analyses the role the EPP could play in helping parties to international construction contracts resolve their disputes more efficiently. Firstly drawing comparisons to the widely accepted and successful statutory adjudication regime in England, Wales and Scotland, it will then refer to other contractual alternatives such as expert determination and dispute adjudication and avoidance boards. Continue reading