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The Impact of the Arab Spring on International Arbitration

Author: Laurence FRANC-MENGET

Type: Article

ref: 22017133-148

N0:2 of 2017

Pages: 133-148

Following the 2011 uprisings in many Arab countries in the Middle East and North Africa ("MENA"), commonly referred to as the "Arab Spring", these States have become the epicentre of a wave of political, social and economic transition which is still far from being over to this day. In some countries, the events have led to the appointment of new governments, like in Egypt or in Tunisia, or to the installation of a new regime, as in Libya, others are still at war, such as is the case in Yemen, Iraq, or even Syria.The physical and legal insecurity generated by the events resulting from these revolutions, the ensuing changes in the affected States' leadership, the asserted wish to break with the past, and the situation of general chaos in the region, have had a considerable impact on the performance of current contracts and, more generally, on foreign investment in these countries.These events therefore have, on the one hand, generated a significant amount of investment and commercial arbitrations, as was the case following several serious political or economic crises elsewhere in the world. On the other hand, these events have also raised concerns as to the fate of having recourse to arbitration in these States in the future. These are the two areas of focus which appear useful for the purposes of our analysis, which will therefore include a tentative classification of arbitrations relating to the Arab Spring ,followed by an analysis of the possible consequences of the revolutions on the use of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism in the region.