“VIVAT, FLOREAT, CRESCAT!”: Herbert Smith Freehills’ International Arbitration practice celebrates 60 years of the New York Convention 1958

A panel of esteemed guest speakers in London examined the Convention’s impact over the past 60 years, its current status and what the future may hold for this crucial international agreement.

The firm’s International Arbitration practice recently invited guests to a unique event marking 60 years of the New York Convention 1958. The event, held in London, was the first of a number of similar events to be held around the network. It featured a diverse panel of speakers, chaired by Global Head of Arbitration Paula Hodges QC. The panel included:

·        The Rt Hon. the Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury, of One Essex Court and Former President of the UK Supreme Court;

·        Professor Albert Jan van den Berg, a leading authority on the New York Convention;

·        Dr Jörg Weber, Head of Investment Policies Branch, Division on Investment and Enterprise, UNCTAD; and

·        Mimi Lee, Managing Counsel at our key client Chevron, who leads Chevron’s international disputes team out of San Ramon, California.

The panel discussed whether the Convention still meets the needs of the global community and what could or should be done to fix any shortcomings. It also examined the English judicial view of the Convention and its application in comparison with the French courts, its real world impact, and the link between the Convention and Foreign Direct Investment. It also provided insight on the importance of the Convention for a real world user of arbitration. The event’s Latin tagline translates as “May it live, grow, and flourish!“, and was originally used by Professor Pieter Sanders in his foreword to ICCA’s Guide to the Interpretation of the 1958 New York Convention: A Handbook for Judges.

Members of our arbitration practice were joined by high-profile guests including clients, members of the arbitration community, barristers, fellow practitioners and academics. The evening concluded with a reception, offering guests the chance to continue the discussion over drinks and canapés.

Paula Hodges QC commented: “This was a most unique event, and we were delighted to host such an esteemed panel of speakers, who provided fascinating insights into the impact of this crucial international treaty from a variety of different perspectives.”

Paula Hodges QC
Paula Hodges QC
Partner, Head of Global Arbitration Practice
+44 20 7466 2027