Although I am not a specialist in investment arbitration, my remarks assess whether NAFTA1 arbitration is an authentically international form of arbitration or a more national, albeit sui generis, version of arbitral adjudication. Presumably, the question arises because of NAFTA’s circumscribed geographic scope; it is, after all, a purely North American framework. Additionally, it seeks to resolve trade policy issues exclusively between the three participating States and their nationals. On the other side of the ledger, NAFTA arbitration--like ICSID,2 which is a truly international form of arbitration—is regulated by treaty and seeks to lessen the impact of sovereign standing and prerogatives on private commercial transactions.
Table of Contents:
I. The Impact of NAFTA Arbitration
II. Defining International
III. National Laws on International Commercial Arbitration