ICSID arbitration—annulment procedure (article 52)
ICSID arbitration—annulment procedure (article 52)

The following Arbitration guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • ICSID arbitration—annulment procedure (article 52)
  • What is annulment in ICSID arbitration proceedings?
  • Applying for an annulment in ICSID arbitration proceedings
  • The ad hoc annulment Committee
  • The five grounds for annulment
  • The annulment proceeding—procedure
  • Stay of enforcement of the original ICSID award
  • The decision on annulment and its effect
  • Costs of annulment proceedings
  • Examples of annulment decisions

What is annulment in ICSID arbitration proceedings?

One of the distinguishing features of arbitration under the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) Convention (as implemented by the ICSID Arbitration Rules) is the availability of the remedy of annulment. Annulment is one of a small number of post-award remedies available to parties within the autonomous, self-contained ICSID system.

The annulment procedure allows a party to seek annulment of the award on the basis of five procedural grounds (set out and discussed below). In this regard, it is often said that the annulment procedure is designed to safeguard the integrity, rather than the outcome, of ICSID arbitration proceedings (eg Hussein Nuaman Soufraki v United Arab Emirates).

The annulment procedure does not permit a party to seek a re-opening of the tribunal’s consideration of the evidence or decision on the merits (eg RSM Production Corporation v Grenada). Indeed, many ICSID ad hoc committees have adamantly stressed the distinction between annulment and appeal (eg Tulip v Turkey). As there is currently no appeals process in the ICSID regime, and an ICSID Convention award is not subject to review under any national laws, the annulment procedure is commonly invoked by parties dissatisfied with the decision in the award to seek to challenge the award on procedural grounds and, at the very least, to defer