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Settling international business disputes in Asia: pitfalls and prospects

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The importance of the issue of settlement of international business disputes in Asia by alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods cannot be overlooked in the present day of international business transactions in that part of the world. Such an issue will be evermore increasingly prominent in the context of an ever stronger regional Asian market in the framework of economic regionalism of ASEAN Plus three, prospective regional energy co-operation in Asia and also in a wider context of the Asia-Pacific region in the foreseeable future. Such regional energy co-operation may take place in various forms such as the South Asian power grid, the Southeast Asian power grid, the ASEAN power grid, the Myanmar-Bangladesh-India cross-border gas pipeline project (recently proposed), the Trans-ASEAN pipeline network for gas transit across the ASEAN countries, Trans-Asian gas pipe-line project, the interconnection of power grids in the APEC member countries, etc. Apart from that, in many international energy contracts that concern Asian countries as host countries for the exploration and exploitation of oil, gas and energy, the host country is, more often than not, agreed by the parties concerned as the venue for the settlement of disputes arising out of these contracts by ADR methods. Is may be, however, due to the stronger bargaining power of the host country. ere is also an increasing tendency among Asian parties to refer their disputes with foreign partners in international business transactions to international arbitration centres close to their home country. All these recent trends explain why the issue of settlement of international energy and business disputes in Asia should be taken very seriously. ere are various ADR methods in practice for dispute settlement in international business transactions. They are, in the wide sense, negotiation, arbitration, conciliation or mediation, and mini trial, etc. With this broad perspective of ADR in mind, this paper will be mainly concerned with the problems and prospects of arbitration and conciliation or mediation in the Asian context.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-38
Number of pages38
JournalMealey’s International Arbitration Report
Volume20
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005

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