Sri Lanka has all the elements to become a regional commercial arbitration hub in the region. The Sri Lanka National Arbitration Centre (SLNAC) is an excellent neutral location as it has the ability to resolve commercial disputes expeditiously and cost effectively under the due process of law, its Chief Executive Officer Hiran de Alwis said.
“Sri Lanka is a neutral venue and has a commercial law based on international standards which could be promoted as a hub in the region.
“We could offer the service more cost effectively than other countries,” de Alwis said.
He said that sector has huge potential with the expansion of economies in the world. At present Singapore and Dubai are multibillion dollars worth industries with a lot of state patronage.
“Sri Lanka has a lot of potential to promote as an arbitration hub in the region at a competitive price or half the amount of those countries,” he said.
“Further, one of the strengths the center has is the co-operation agreement with the Giant Triple A of the USA, Korean Commercial Arbitration Organisation and also with Australian International Arbitration Centre, Hong Kong and Singapore International Arbitration Centers,” he said. Sri Lanka’s arbitration law is based on modern law and a special High Court has been set up to enforce arbitration awards.
“Therefore, we could conclude an arbitration case within one year. Since, this could be promoted in the region because Sri Lanka has the best methods to resolve disputes outside court in a more confidential and cost effective way especially for commercial disputes, he said.
It is noticed that during the recent past there has been an increase in the number of shipping disputes, disputes that arise due to contract an increase in the disputes in Islamic finance. These disputes can be resolved through arbitration more expeditiously,the CEO said.
Sri Lanka Arbitration Act enacted in 1995 is one of the best Acts in the region. The English speaking ability, professional persons and excellent venues are plus factors that Sri Lanka could be promoted as an international commercial arbitration hub in the region, Alwis said.
Further, SLNAC is hoping to promote this concept at the Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting (CHOGAM) business forum as well.(Daily News)