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To mark 100 years of the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce, ICC has issued a declaration setting out a vision to lead dispute resolution for the next century.

Unveiled during the global launch of the ICC Court Centenary today, the ICC Centenary Declaration on Dispute Prevention and Resolution is published exactly one hundred years to the day that the ICC Court was established under the leadership of founding ICC Chairman and French Minister of Commerce Etienne Clementel and ICC founders known as the “Merchants of Peace”.

Claudia Salomon, ICC Court President said:

“As business relationships and disputes evolve in an ever-changing world, ICC’s track record of innovation places us in the perfect position to lead the world of dispute resolution and prevention into the future.”

The Declaration is the result of an extensive and inclusive drafting process focused on the ICC Court’s strategic priorities, challenges and opportunities.

As well as committing to the ICC Court’s purpose to enable access to justice and the rule of law, the Declaration sets out commitments and principles for the development of further pioneering ICC tools and services that aim to better serve the global dispute resolution community – including businesses of all sizes, sectors and geographies.

Today’s global launch of the ICC Court Centenary featured ICC Secretary General John W. H. Denton AO, ICC Court President Claudia Salomon and ICC Court Secretary General Alexander G. Fessas who underscored ICC’s commitment to leading dispute resolution into the next century.

Alexander Fessas, Secretary General of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, said:

“We gather today to mark a tremendous milestone in the history of dispute resolution and the ICC Court. While much separates today’s world from the 1920s, much is also unchanged. Our mission to ensure access to justice and promote the rule of law by serving companies, states and individuals, a constant in our first 100 years, is alive today and will be the force driving ICC’s dispute prevention and resolution services into our next century. We count on your engagement to make 2023 a year to remember. Long live the ICC Court!”

The world’s preferred arbitral institution

Having established ICC in 1919, ICC’s founders, the Merchants of Peace, recognised early on the need for an international dispute–resolving mechanism to enable trade to flow.

Inaugurated on 19 January 1923, the ICC Court is recognised today as the world’s preferred arbitral institution, providing neutral and trusted services for businesses of all sizes, sectors and geographies to resolve, manage and avoid commercial disputes.

The ICC Court has handled over 27,000 cases filed to date, with amounts in dispute ranging from less than US$10,000 to over US$27 billion. Against the backdrop of contemporary geopolitical and economic turmoil, its services are more relevant than ever.

John W. H. Denton AO, ICC Secretary General, said:

“In a declaration issued in 2019, on the occasion of the centenary of the International Chamber of Commerce, we committed to continue investing in, and innovating, our world-leading arbitral process to provide effective alternative dispute resolution methods to support global commerce. Thanks to our enduring reputation for excellence and thought leadership, we are well-positioned to live up to this commitment and will continue to expand our services and global footprint to shape dispute resolution for the next 100 years.”

Key milestones in the ICC Court’s history include helping to broker the Geneva Convention on the Execution of Foreign Awards in 1927 and submitting the preliminary draft convention of what became the United Nations New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards in 1958.

A year-long series of activities is underway across the globe to mark the 100-year anniversary in 2023. These include the launch of pioneering initiatives, a roadshow of flagship arbitration regional conferences as well as dedicated regional events, courses and trainings.

Watch the global launch of the ICC Court Centenary

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Read the Declaration