Conference prepares way for Jerusalem Arbitration Centre
An intensive conference on international arbitration was held in Ramallah, Palestine last week as part of the development phase of the ICC Jerusalem Arbitration Centre (JAC), an independent, specialized arbitration institution tailored to Israeli-Palestinian commercial disputes and their unique circumstances.
The conference, one of a series, aimed to raise awareness and knowledge to build infrastructure for the JAC, a joint venture agreement between ICC Palestine and ICC Israel set to begin operations in 2012. Scholars and experts conducted sessions on topics ranging from the benefits of international arbitration for the local economy to how to negotiate and draft an international arbitration clause. “The conferences will develop the knowledge of Palestinian legal academics and will introduce a baseline for international and Palestinian partnerships to develop Palestinian human resource capacity,” said Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. Noting the successful partnership between the Palestinian National Authority and the private sector, Mr Fayyad also said that the creation of ICC Palestine in 2011 had been a national achievement. The JAC initiative hopes to bring long- term benefits to the legal profession, enhance bilateral business between Palestinians and Israelis, open new markets and attract local and foreign investments. “This is an important national achievement that will impact the development of the Palestinian private sector and the Palestinian economy over the next few years,” said Munib R. Masri, Chairman of the Board of ICC Palestine. “My colleagues and I strongly believe that membership of ICC is an integral and complementary part of the process of putting the state of Palestine on the international map.” The Jerusalem Arbitration Centre will serve as a joint credible legal framework providing a fair, speedy, and relatively cost‐efficient dispute resolution mechanism for both Palestinian and Israeli businesses alike. “This is a kick-off event for a larger series of initiatives that will aim at capacity-building and strengthening the Palestinian legal profession, judiciary and business professionals to enable them to participate more effectively in international arbitration,” said Catherine Rogers, a professor at Penn State Law School, one of the event organizers. Other sponsor organizations include ICC Headquarters, ICC Palestine, Queen Mary Law School Center for Commercial Studies, the Open Society Foundation’s Palestinian Rule of Law Project, the JAMS Foundation, and law firms Crowell & Moring and Wilmer, Cutler,