Does Investment Arbitration Have a Future in the Asia-Pacific Region? - Panel Discussion - Chapter 13 - Investment Treaty Arbitration and International Law - Volume 4
Originally from Investment Treaty Arbitration and International Law - Volume 4
MR. WEILER: We are ready for the last panel of our day. I’m happy to introduce Timothy Nelson, who is not English. Actually, Timothy Nelson is an American lawyer. He may sound like he’s from Australia, but he showed me his citizenship certificate. So he is indeed American and he talks about American politics as if he’s from here. Timothy Nelson is a partner at Skadden Arps. I don’t really know what to say about him. That’s probably worse for him because it means I’m just going to make up stuff. But he’s a brilliant lawyer who has been involved not just in investment arbitration but all forms of arbitration. Beyond that, he has also been involved in dispute settlement at various levels and in very unique contexts. If this was a war story panel, he could just regale us with a number of different stories about some very interesting disputes he’s found himself in. Timothy will be guiding us through and taking us home to the final moment. Thank you very much for coming, Timothy.
MR. NELSON: Thank you very much, Todd. Thank you for that extremely libelous, but nevertheless well-intentioned introduction. The libel is that I am a dual citizen. I’m also Australian. I am conscious as we debate the future of Asia Pacific arbitration that this does not look like a particularly Asian panel. But, we do have Larry Shore from Gibson Dunn, a senior statesman of New York arbitration and John Townsend, another senior statesman of American litigation and arbitration and Hughes Hubbard partner in Washington, D.C. We also have my compatriot, Kim Rooney, originally Australian, but based in Hong Kong as a barrister, and John Savage, who is the Shearman Sterling partner in D.C., but has spent an awful lot of time in Asia, including a stint based in Singapore. So we do speak with some authority on matters of Asia Pacific, although we stipulated we will concentrate on Asia, because Pacific is really a bit over inclusive.
The topic is does investment arbitration have a future in the Asia Pacific region? That topic reminded me of a book when I was growing up in my homeland of Australia called "Can God Survive in Australia?" The critics said, “God is a deity. There’s no question of survival and his grace is eternal." At which the answer was well, maybe not in Australia. But the question does investment arbitration have a future in the Asia Pacific region also deals with an omniscient and omnipresent feature of the Asia Pacific legal environment, the investment protection web. We will hear from our panelists that this indeed is a very extensive and maybe not divine, but certainly all pervasive mechanism for protecting investments within Asia. There is a comprehensive network now of investment protection agreements within the Asia Pacific region.