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Government seeks international guidance on arbitration

The government has enlisted the services of a renowned international arbitration expert from the University of Miami as it continues in its push to become a leading arbitration hub. (Harry Cutting photo/©Dupuch)

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TheBahamasInvestor.com
Friday, October 31, 2014
Friday, October 31, 2014

The government has enlisted the services of a renowned international arbitration expert from the University of Miami as it continues in its push to become a leading arbitration hub.

Minister of Financial Services Ryan Pinder (pictured) announced this morning that Jan Paulsson, head of the International Arbitration Institute of the University of Miami and former president of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration will act as personal advisor to the government in its drive to build an arbitration centre in The Bahamas.


In this role, Paulsson, who is a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, will council the government on the necessary amendments to the existing legal framework, developing a platform for arbitration and engaging the judiciary.

Minister Pinder said Paulsson’s appointment is part of his Ministry’s efforts to reach out to international partners and learn from the expertise of leaders in the field.

“You have to have a spirit of confidence and engagement to develop a viable arbitration centre. Engagement is fundamental to build confidence and to leverage their expertise,” he said speaking at a half-day conference organized by the Bahamas’ branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Senior partner at McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes Brian Moree, who also spoke at the event, agreed and encouraged “extensive international cooperation to engage all the stakeholders”.

He advised The Bahamas to reach out to bodies such as the International Centre for Dispute Resolution and the American Arbitration Association.

“We cannot go it alone,” he said. “We need to look very closely at developing and fostering these key alliances. We need to get their advice and support because they bring credibility and currency to our jurisdiction.”

cmorris@dupuch.com

The attorney general Allyson Maynard-Gibson has called on The Bahamas' legal and financial services sectors to "build a culture of alternative dispute resolution," saying that the creation of a regional and international arbitration hub in the country would deliver significant economic benefits.

Prime Minister Perry Christie announced October 31 that a new company will take over $100 million in troubled commercial loans from Bank of The Bahamas, thereby removing this risk from BOB’s books and allowing for expansion. Read his statement here.

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