Challenges to the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council

  • Ahmed Almutawa

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


The topic of this thesis is the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in the GCC states with the aim of offering a proposal for unifying the substantive and procedural rules for enforcing foreign arbitral awards under the ambit of the New York Convention for the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, the Riyadh Convention, and the ICSID Convention to which all the GCC states are signatories. The significance of this thesis is its comprehensive comparison of the Shari’a, international arbitration agreements, and the arbitration laws of GCC states.

The research argues that the weaknesses in the arbitral enforcement mechanisms of GCC states do not necessarily stem from the Shari’a, as most Western scholars suspect, but from the very same problems facing non-Islamic countries regarding the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards. These include the failure to create an international consensus on the enforceability of a foreign arbitral award that has been previously set aside, overt judicial activism, and protectionist attitudes against foreign arbitral awards.

As research into the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards under the New York Convention have been shaped largely by the interpretation and analysis of Western scholars, this thesis gives voice to the perspectives of Shari’a scholars to address many of the uninformed criticisms lodged at the GCC states regarding arbitration as a whole and the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards more specifically.

The methodologies employed in this thesis include both (1) a review and comparison of the existing literature, including scholarly works on the topic, cases in the GCC states and elsewhere, national rules and legislation in the GCC states, and regional/international agreements or conventions; and (2) a survey of those engaged in the field of arbitration in the GCC states, using survey methodology and Survey Monkey, an online survey design, collection and analysis tool. The survey measures the perspectives of practitioners engaged in the field of arbitration in the various GCC states.
Date of AwardMar 2014
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Portsmouth
SupervisorMunir Maniruzzaman (Supervisor) & Greg Osborne (Supervisor)

Cite this