4th Annual ITA-IEL-ICC Joint Conference on International Energy Arbitration - The Call for Specialised Arbitrators, Forums and Procedures in Energy Arbitration

The 4th Annual Joint Conference took place last week in Houston with a panel discussion on the benefits and risks of tailoring international arbitration for energy disputes.  A panel moderated by Tomas Vail (White & Case, London), and comprising Professor Peter Cameron , CEPMLP Director, Ginny Castelan (King & Spalding, Houston), Lauren Friedman (Kirkland & Ellis, New York), and Aaron Rofkahr (Chevron Upstream, San Ramon) considered the use of specialised fora for energy disputes, lists identifying experienced energy arbitrators, and bespoke procedural rules, like time limits on rendering awards.  

Highlights included Professor Cameron's overview of the International Centre for Energy Arbitration's Initial Report into Dispute Resolution in the Energy Sector, as well as a lively debate on the feasibility and usefulness of creating specialised energy arbitral fora and procedural rules.  The majority of panellists and audience members expressed scepticism about the utility of specialised institutions and rules, voicing concern that such mechanisms might not be suitable for the diverse range of disputes arising in the energy sector.  To the extent that energy arbitration users desired reform -- for instance, time limits on rendering arbitral awards -- the panellists cautioned that such measures should build in flexibility to allow users and arbitrators to take account of the breadth and potential complexity of energy disputes.

CEPMLP were sponsors for this event which also welcomed the support and contributions from several leading oil companies namely Chevron, Baker Hughes, Conocophillips, Occidental and ExxonMobil.