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International commercial arbitration

International commercial arbitration (ICA) is a private dispute resolution process in which parties from different countries choose to have their disputes decided by one or more arbitrators, without the involvement of the courts of a particular country.

We provide advice to government on issues relating to the international arbitration framework in Australia. We also work closely to support the activities of the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (ACICA), the peak international ICA organisation in Australia.

International Arbitration Act 1974 (Cth)

In Australia, ICA is governed by the International Arbitration Act 1974 (Cth) (IAA). The IAA seeks to facilitate international trade and commerce by encouraging the use of arbitration as a way to resolve disputes. It implements a pro-enforcement, streamlined arbitration regime that reflects international best practice.

The IAA gives effect to the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law's Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, which outlines the mandatory procedures for all ICA proceedings in Australia.

The IAA also implements Australia's obligations under the following conventions:

  • Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (entered into force for Australia on 24 June 1975)
  • Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (entered into force for Australia on 1 June 1991).