The Role of Arbitration in International Business


International commercial arbitration is the most common method for resolving disputes arising from agreements between businesses in different countries. In this detailed presentation, Igor Ellyn, QC, an experienced arbitration counsel and a chartered arbitrator, describes the systems and procedures applicable to international commercial arbitration and helps business people understand what to expect.

The information on these slides help the reader understand why planning for how to deal with a dispute can be just as important as the business agreement itself.

Mr. Ellyn answers the important question: As an entrepreneur, not a lawyer, why do I need to know about arbitration? International entrepreneurs benefit from an appreciation of the ins and outs of resolving disputes which frequently arise in the implementation of commercial agreements.

These power point slides are organized under the following headings:

- What is international commercial arbitration?

- As an entrepreneur, not a lawyer, why do I need to know about arbitration?

- How does arbitration differ from other forms of dispute resolution?

- How is arbitration used in international business?

- The ABCs of arbitration: Ajudicative, Binding and Consensual

- Arbitration binds only parties to the agreement

- The agreement to arbitrate: Location, Language, Governing Law and Rules

- Designing the arbitral process

- Ad hoc and institutional arbitrations

- Confidentiality and loss of confidentiality in arbitration

- Selecting and paying the arbitrator or arbitral panel

- Laws affecting arbitration

- The arbitrator’s jurisdiction

- How the arbitration is conducted

- Procedural matters during the arbitration: preservation, security, procedure

- How documentary, oral and expert evidence are adduced in the arbitration

- The arbitral award and its interpretation

- Rights of appeal and court intervention

- Enforcement of the arbitration award

This article was prepared for a presentation to MBA students at York University, Toronto. The author expresses his thanks to Prof. Sigal Haber, visiting professor of the International Entrepreneurship course at Schulich School of Business for the opportunity to make this presentation. This presentation is for information only and is not legal advice. Readers may contact the author for more information.

Igor Ellyn, QC, CS, FCIArb. is the senior partner of Ellyn Law LLP Business Litigation &Arbitration Lawyers, Toronto. He is Chair of the Business Litigation and Arbitration Practice Group of He is also a member of the Toronto chapter executive of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a member of the Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society. Mr. Ellyn is a member of six arbitration panels including the Arbitration Committee of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.

ELLYN LAW LLP has expertise in a broad range of complex commercial disputes including corporate and shareholder disputes and also aspects of arbitration and mediation. The lawyers of the firm recently published the Canada chapter of Liability of Corporate Directors (Juris). The seminal article, Shareholders Remedies in Canada is now in its fourth edition and has been widely read online. Igor Ellyn has also written and presented extensively about international matters. These articles are posted on

Further information is available on

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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