A Dialogue entitled “Relative Role of International Law and Domestic Law in International Commercial Arbitration” was held on Tuesday at a local hotel organized by Bangladesh International Arbitration Centre (BIAC). The keynote speaker at the Dialogue was the former Solicitor General of Australia Dr. Gavan Griffith, BIAC Chief Executive Dr. Toufiq Ali welcomed the participants and requested Dr. Kamal Hossain to moderate the event.
Dr. Hossain observed that in international commercial arbitration, national law and municipal law play important roles. But all concerned need to remain careful so that these do not lead to unnecessary delay or enhance cost in resolution of disputes.
In his keynote speech, Dr. Gavan Griffith took the audience through the evolution of the legal regime of international arbitration. In modern world, there is a clear preference for arbitration as the arbitration award is final and non-appealable, and enforceable in all the 148 signatory countries of the New York Convention. Parties have freedom to appoint their arbitrators. These provide comfort to parties in entering into contracts with foreign partners. Without these, parties will feel insecure or ask for a premium. On the other hand, efficiency in arbitration is related to prudence of the arbitrators, failing which international arbitration will experience regressive development.
BIAC Chairman Mahbubur Rahman observed that our economy is developing very rapidly, bringing its businesses into close contact with the outside world. Many foreign companies are now investing in Bangladesh. This interaction with the business world outside will require Bangladeshi firms to be aware of the international laws and conventions that deal with commercial arbitration. It is in this context that Dr. Griffith’s presentation is particularly valuable to us.
Distinguished Jurists including former Chief Justices Latifur Rahman, KM Hasan, Syed JR Mudasser Hossain, Justice Awlad Ali, Barrister Rafiqul Huq, former Caretaker Adviser Abdul Muyeed Chowdhury, Ajmalul HossainQC, former Attorney General Fida M Kamal, Barrister Rokanuddin Mahmud, and business leaders including Rokia A Rahman President MCCI, M Shahjahan Khan President DCCI, attended the Dialogue and took part in the deliberations.