Ministers announce: Scottish government contractual disputes to be resolved through Scottish Arbitration Centre

17 Apr, 2014

According to, Legal Affairs Minister Roseanna Cunningham said:”Arbitration can play an important role in meeting the needs of businesses, their customers and their employees in finding cost-effective resolution to complex issues.

“There is a fantastic level of expertise within Scotland’s legal community in arbitration, and we want to capitalise on this to make Scotland a world leader in the lucrative arbitration market.

“We have been determined in our commitment to provide businesses and lawyers with the infrastructure they need to make Scotland an international centre for arbitration and enhance this country’s global competitiveness. As part of our efforts, this government is actively inserting Scottish arbitration clauses in all Scottish government contracts.”

The Scottish Arbitration Centre was established in 2011 and is governed by the provisions of the Arbitration (Scotland) Act. The regime set out in the Act is broadly similar to that applicable in England and Wales, according to the centre’s website, but includes a number of provisions designed to increase confidentiality and reduce unnecessary court challenges. In particular, the duty to treat arbitral proceedings as confidential is backed up by a statutory guarantee.

Contracting parties can specify Scotland as the seat of arbitration in any domestic or international arbitration clause. Depending on the nature of the clause, arbitrations can either be run in accordance with the Scottish Arbitration Rules or using various institutional rules, subject to the Arbitration (Scotland) Act and the jurisdiction of the Scottish courts.

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