Arbitration in Banking and Finance

This website is part of a joint research project of the Institute for Banking Law and the Center for Transnational Law (CENTRAL) at the University of Cologne, Germany. The project explores the potential of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), especially arbitration and mediation, as instruments for a more cost- and time-efficient resolution of b2b-disputes in banking and finance. The resolution of such disputes requires both industry-specific know-how and specialized legal knowledge. They can arise out of a wide variety of international banking and finance transactions, ranging from plain vanilla loan or project financing agreements to highly sophisticated derivative transactions, sovereign debt and asset management or private wealth agreements.

The increasing complexity and sophistication of financial markets and financial products as well as the lessons learned from the financial crisis of 2007/2008 all call for a larger variety and more sophisticated methods of dispute resolution in cross-border banking- and finance-transactions. The Corona crisis, Brexit, and the specificities of Islamic finance, whose increased breadth, sophistication and involvement of Islamic law bears a huge potential for arbitration as a viable alternative to dispute resolution by domestic courts, provide additional support for this idea. A Report published in March 2018 by a Task Force of the Commission on Arbitration and ADR of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has confirmed that financial institutions across the globe are not exploiting the potential benefits of international commercial and investment arbitration to the full extent possible.

The website provides first-hand information as well as practical know-how on the use of arbitration and mediation for dispute resolution in international banking and finance transactions as well as sample contract clauses to ensure efficient resolution of disputes arising out of such contracts and a compilation of the growing literature in this field.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have questions, comments or ideas to improve this website further.

Klaus Peter Berger