New York Convention Roadshow in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs welcomed ICCA to Addis Ababa for a two-day event on 23 and 24 September, for ICCA’s first Judicial Roadshow in Ethiopia. Chaired by Mr. Reta Alemu, Director General of the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ International Legal Affairs Department, the Roadshow was held at an important time for Ethiopian arbitration, as a dialogue is ongoing between governmental, legislative and judicial stakeholders as to whether Ethiopia should ratify the New York Convention.
The Roadshow was opened by H.E. Ambassador Fesseha Yimer, Special Adviser to the Ethiopian Minister of Foreign Affairs, who noted that Ethiopia is one of the ten fastest growing economies in the world today and that the increase of foreign investment and trade in Ethiopia will result in an increase in the number of commercial disputes. ICCA members Ms. Elodie Dulac, Mr. Thomas Snider, Ms. Erica Stein and Mr. Franz Schwarz, together with senior Ethiopian lawyer Mr. Tameru Wondm Agegnehu addressed the approximately 80 participants, who included judges from all levels of the Federal Court system, members of the House of People’s Representatives (including the Vice-Chair of the House of People’s Representatives’ Standing Legal Committee) and the House of the Federation, together with officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Justice, Finance and Economic Development, Trade, and Energy.
During the Roadshow, speakers addressed international arbitration in general and the New York Convention in particular. The participants were provided with copies of the provisions of the 1960 Ethiopian Civil Code and the 1965 Ethiopian Code of Civil Procedure currently regulating the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in Ethiopia, as well as with a copy of the New York Convention and of ICCA’s Judges Guide.
The Roadshow sessions worked very well, with keen interest by the participants in the subject-matter and lively dialogue on the pros and cons of ratifying the New York Convention.