New York Convention Roadshow in Cairo, Egypt
Report by Dr. Mohamed Abdel Raouf, Director of CRCICA
On 21 May 2016, the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (CRCICA) hosted a Cairo New York Convention (NYC) Roadshow in cooperation with ICCA and the National Centre for Judicial Studies. The event took place at the CRCICA Conference Centre in Cairo, Egypt.
The event was attended by 56 Egyptian judges from the Egyptian Court of Cassation, the Cairo Court of Appeal, the Southern Cairo First Instance Court, the Giza First Instance Court and the Cairo Economic Court, in addition to public prosecutors at the Court of Cassation.
Discussions were led by the seven experts: Prof. Dr. Ahmed S. El Kosheri (Founding Partner, Kosheri, Rashed and Riad, Cairo-Egypt and Advisory Member of ICCA); Prof. Dr. Borham Attallah (Civil Law Professor, Faculty of Law, Alexandria University); Judge Dominique Hascher (French Cour de Cassation and ICCA Governing Board member); Judge Bohan Amrallah (former President of the Cairo Court of Appeal); Judge Nabil Omran (Vice-President of the Court of Cassation); and Judge Ismail Al-Ziady (Cairo Court of Appeal), in addition to CRCICA Director and ICCA Governing Board member, Dr. Mohamed Abdel Raouf.
The program of the one day event commenced with three lectures covering the following topics: 1) An overview of the NYC, its objectives, means of interpretation and salient comparative judicial application; 2) the importance of the NYC as a means of assuring legal security; and 3) the role of the national judge in the international arbitration process from the perspectives of both practitioners and judges.
The lectures were followed by panel-led discussions covering: 1) Article I to IV of the NYC relating to its scope of application, the arbitration agreement, the enforcement procedures and the requirements to be satisfied by the parties seeking to recognize/enforce foreign arbitral awards; 2) Article V of the NYC relating to the grounds for refusing the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards; 3) Article VII of the NYC with special emphasis on the relationship between the NYC and the Riyadh Convention of 1983 covering inter alia the enforcement of Arab arbitral awards in Arab states; and 4) the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards set aside at the seat of arbitration.
The texts of the NYC, the Egyptian Arbitration Act, the relevant provisions of the Egyptian law on civil procedure, as well as the Arabic version of ICCA’s Guide to the Interpretation of the 1958 New York Convention were made available to participants, in addition to five relevant judgments rendered by the Egyptian Court of Cassation and the Cairo Court of Appeal and three doctrinal articles regarding the application of the NYC.
Participants agreed that the Roadshow was a great success, and it generated interesting discussions on topics such as the discretion of national judges in enforcing arbitral awards while one or more of the causes of refusing enforcement exist; the importance of having a harmonized application of the provisions of the NYC in accordance with the standards and principles of interpretation of international law; the public policy defence under the NYC; and an analysis of the position of the French courts regarding the enforcement of arbitral awards that have been set aside at the seat. Participants also showed interest in ICCA’s Virtual Forum for Judges, and expressed an interest to learn more about international arbitration in general and the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in particular.
CRCICA expresses its thanks to Judge Nabil Omran for his tremendous efforts in successfully conducting the Cairo NYC Roadshow. CRCICA also acknowledges the valued cooperation of Judge Borhan Amrallah and Judge Omar Hafiz, as well as the latter’s colleagues at the National Centre for Judicial Studies.