Ethiopia ratifies the New York Convention.
Papua New Guinea accedes to the New York Convention
On 20 July 2014, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the decision of the US District Court for the Southern District Court of New York to to vacate its earlier judgment enforcing an arbitral award that had been annulled by Malaysian courts (Thai-Lao Lignite (Thailand) Co. v. Government of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, No. 14-597, 2017 WL 3081817 (2d Cir. July 20, 2017)).
In March 2017, Ontario adopted a new law on international commercial arbitration (International Commercial Arbitration Act, 2017, SO 2017, c 2) repealing its 1990 version (International Commercial Arbitration Act, RSO 1990, I.9).
Cypriot Supreme Court vacates first instance decision which found that the conditions of Article IV of the New York Convention had not been met, upholding the underlying objective and spirit of the Convention (Intersputnik International Organization of Space Communications v Alrena Investments Limited (Civil Appeal 298/2013, April 4 2017)).
New York State Appellate Division affirms orders which prevent efforts of the award creditor to enforce a vacated award and to oppose the award debtor’s efforts to vacate an order of a French court to recognise the vacated award (Matter of Citigroup Global Makts., Inc. v. Fiorilla (New York State Appellate Division, First Department, Decision of 29 June 2017)).
On 25 March 2017, the US District Court for the District of Columbia granted Crystallex’s request to confirm an arbitral award rendered by an ICSID Additional Facility tribunal in the amount of USD 1.2 billion (Crystallex International Corporation v Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, US District Court for the District of Columbia (25 March 2017)).
Angola is currently in the process of becoming the 157th Contracting State to the New York Convention.
On 9 June 2016, the US District Court for the District of Columbia denied a motion to confirm a foreign arbitral award which was set aside by the Common Court of Justice and Arbitration because the arbitral tribunal breached the Arbitration Rulels of the Common Court of Justice and Arbitration and solicited increased fees despite being ordered not to do so. The District Court did not find the annulment repugnant to U.S. public policy and declined to enforce the award (Getma International v. The Republic of Guinea, No. 1:14-1616(RBW) (D.D.C., 9 June 2016)). The District Court previously stayed the case, pending the outcome of respondent’s attempt to have the award annulled (case summary reported on this site on 8 December 2015 “Stay of enforcement granted pending foreign annulment proceedings - In the matter of the Arbitration of Certain Controversies Between Getma International and The Republic of Guinea, United States District Court, District of Columbia, 3 November 2015”).
On 31 May 2016, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed by majority the district court’s decision which had denied the enforcement of a foreign arbitral award for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction. The New York Convention was applicable in this case and the Czech Republic had not waived its sovereign immunity under the Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act (Diag Human, S.E., v. Czech Republic – Ministry of Health, No. 14-7142 (D.C. Cir., 31 May 2016).
On 10 May 2016, the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit addressed the question of whether a cruise ship employee who is injured on the job, and whose employment contract contained an arbitration agreement governed by the New York Convention and Chapter 2 of the Federal Arbitration Act, can bar arbitration by showing that high costs may prevent him from effectively arbitrating his federal statutory rights. The Eleventh Circuit referred to its New York Convention precedent that suggests but does not hold that a party may only raise such public-policy defense in opposition to a motion to enforce an arbitral award and not in opposition to a motion to compel arbitration. However, the Eleventh Circuit did not need to definitively answer this question, because plaintiff failed to establish that the costs of arbitration would preclude him from arbitrating his federal statutory claims. The Eleventh Circuit, therefore, affirmed the district court’s order compelling the parties to arbitration and denied the defendant’s motion for sanctions (Suazo v. NCL (Bahamas), Ltd., No. 14-15351 (11th Cir. May 10, 2016)).
On 13 May 2016, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit affirmed the judgment of the US District Court for the District of Columbia enforcing an arbitral award against the Government of Belize (Newco Limited v. Government of Belize, No. 15-7077 (D.C. Cir. May 13, 2016)).