British Virgin Islands: New Arbitration Act Set to Come into Force


Above: the British Virgin Islands

By the Caribbean Journal staff

The British Virgin Islands’ new Arbitration Act is set to come into force in October.

In a statement, the territory’s government said it would “usher in a modern era for the British Virgin Islands in domestic and international arbitration.”

According to Arliene Penn, director of communications, the act establishes a “fair, equitable and efficient arbitration framework that gives parties flexibility in the settlement of disputes.”

Notable features of the act include provisions for interim protection from an arbitral tribunal, an emergency arbitrator of the court; enforcement in the BVI of arbitral awards from countries signatory to the New York Convention and non-convention countries; and, crucially, the establishment of the British Virgin Islands International Arbitration Centre.

Penn said the provisions of the act were based on the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Model Law.

The modern act was passed in January to replace the territory’s existing arbitration act, which had been in force since 1976.